Unlike the major social reforms in America’s history, it was enacted without debate.
Obama’s transgender bathroom, locker-room, and shower-stall decree belongs high atop the list of edicts that President Donald J. Trump should obliterate. From priorities to prematurity to procedure, this is public policy at its worst.
Obama jointly used his departments of Justice and Education to declare that all learning institutions that take federal funds — from kindergarten through graduate school — must allow students to enjoy the lavatories, locker rooms, showers, other facilities, and sports teams that correspond not to their objective genitalia but to their subjective “gender identity.” According to the DOJ and the DOE: “Gender identify refers to an individual’s internal sense of gender. A person’s gender identity may be different from or the same as the person’s sex defined at birth.”
At that time, Americans were enduring flaccid, 0.5 percent GDP growth, ever-longer wait lists at VA medical centers, and an explosion in homicides, including a 57 percent hike in murders of Chicagoans. Among those killed, 78 percent were black.
What a perfect time for Obama to cleave the country over an issue that was hardly on anyone’s menu. Yet again, his priorities were beyond baffling.
Liberals love “national conversations.” Agree or disagree with the conclusions, Americans indeed engaged in national conversations before major social reforms.
We certainly had wide, open, vigorous debates before women secured the right to vote in August 1920, via the 19th Amendment, and afterward, throughout the feminist movement.
Decades of debate and discussion preceded the Civil Rights Acts of 1964 and desegregation.
The Supreme Court’s Obergefell v. Hodges decision in June 2015 followed a national dialogue on gay marriage. Americans concurrently discussed Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and other gay-rights topics.
But where was the equivalent national conversation on transgenderism?
Rather than act after (or even during) such back-and-forth — perhaps by calling on Congress to send him relevant legislation or even deciding (how refreshing!) to stay out of this and let the states and the people figure it out — Obama made his decree the opening argument on this matter.
Earlier national conversations usually have been advanced by influential, often charismatic Americans. Samuel Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and Thomas Paine were among those who led the 13 colonies in considering independence.
Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas conducted a legendary conversation over slavery, abolitionism, and whether the union could remain united while half free and half in chains.
Susan B. Anthony and her arguments led the suffragettes toward the ballot box.
In August 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. stirred 250,000 at the Lincoln Memorial — and the entire nation — with his “I Have a Dream” speech.
“My name is Harvey Milk, and I am here to recruit you,” was the oft-repeated slogan of Milk, an early gay-rights leader. Like King, he was assassinated — while serving on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.
But who is the transgender MLK?
Is it famed drag queen RuPaul? Could it be Chelsea, né Bradley, Manning — originally sentenced to 35 years in prison at Fort Leavenworth for espionage? (Obama Tuesday commuted Manning for release next May; one wonders whether Chelsea would have been treated so mercifully if she still were named Bradley.) Why not Caitlyn, né Bruce, Jenner? Jenner told the Washington Postthat she is not attracted to men. “As far as I know, I am a heterosexual.” If Jenner became involved with a woman, would that make her a heterosexual lesbian? Jenner cleared this up: “Let’s go with ‘asexual’ for now.”
Also troubling: The T in LGBT seemed to hop onto the gay-rights bandwagon for a free ride. Shouldn’t the transgendered have had their own suffragette marches and their own Montgomery Bus Boycott before being able to nail their T to the LGB? (Transvestites participated in the Stonewall riots, although that event launched the gay-rights movement, not an appeal for transgenderism.)
Also, did I miss the vote when gay men were asked whether or not we wanted to embrace, as our own, men who amputate their penises and fold them into vaginas? Were any lesbians polled to ask them to accept in sisterhood women who reject their “lady parts,” fashion artificial phalluses, and then rechristen themselves as men?
When was the national conversation on that?
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SOURCE: National Review
Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News contributor and a contributing editor with National Review Online.