North Carolina governor Pat McCrory proposed House Bill 2 in March. According to CNN, the bill implements a statewide policy that bans individuals from using public bathrooms that do not correspond to their biological sex.
Other states including South Carolina, Illinois, Kansas, Massachusetts, Missouri, Mississippi, Tennessee and Wisconsin were quick to follow, as lawmakers considered, and some attempted, restricting bathrooms for transgender people as well.
Most of the politicians concerns are said to be “public safety”, specifically of cis-gendered women and girls who use public restrooms. Former presidential candidate and senator Ted Cruz spoke out about the bathroom bill and gave his opinion.
“You don’t have a right to intrude upon the rights of others because whether or not a man believes he’s a woman, there are a lot of women who would like to be able to use a public restroom in peace without having a man there — and when there are children involved, you don’t have a right to impose your lifestyle on others,” Cruz said.
While Cruz and other politicians are in favor of the bill, there has been national uproar in opposition. Director of Operations for South Carolina Equality Jennifer Tague feels the bill is ludacris and infringes upon the rights of transgender people.
“It just boils down to hate,” Tague said. “The transgender community does not feel validated. They are being treated like second class citizens. It’s just hateful.”
Though the bill is still pending in North Carolina, it has already taken effect on some transgender people. According to The Atlantic, transgender individuals who had been denied access to bathrooms were 45 percent more likely to have tried to commit suicide.
Additionally, many performers such as Bruce Springsteen, the Cirque du Soleil, Mumford and Sons and Tracy Morgan have spoken out against the bill, cancelling shows in North Carolina as a protest.
The bill raised unrest and question in regards to privacy and civil rights, and will continue to raise question and concern within months to come.
By LUCIA BERMUDEZ