North Carolina Trans Residents Respond to State's Transphobic Law 

Trans North Carolinians

Transgender North Carolinians are responding to the anti-LGBT law passed by state legislators in May, saying it villainizes them and addresses a "problem" that doesn't exist.

The law, passed in March, repeals all local LGBT-inclusive nondiscrimination protections and requires transgender people to use public restrooms and locker rooms that do not match their gender identity. 

Raleigh, N.C.'s daily paper, The News & Observer, posted a video Sunday in which trans residents explain how the law makes them feel. "What man is going to put a dress on and try to pass as a woman so he can use the women's restroom to rape someone?" says Austin Fonville in the video. 

"I think that a lot of our leaders still like to think that the transgender community is far removed from North Carolina," says another participant in the video, Candis Cox. "That here we don't really have 'those people.' They've created this villainized character of the transgender person and a sexual predator, and they need to understand that is not the case." 

Since Republican Gov. Pat McCrory signed House Bill 2 into law, he has been saying the sweeping legislation is about protecting the safety and privacy of women and children. McCrory and his supporters continue to advance the provably false claim that allowing transgender people to use the bathrooms and locker rooms that correspond with their gender identity permits sexual predators to enter gender-segregated spaces and assault people. 

In reality, while more than 200 localities nationwide have trans-inclusive laws on the books, there has never been a single verified report of a transgender person assaulting a cisgender (nontrans) person in a restroom, nor have there been any instances of someone “pretending” to be transgender to gain access to sex-segregated spaces for nefarious purposes. By contrast, however, transgender people face a much higher risk of being the victims of physical and verbal assault in sex-segregated spaces, compared to their cisgender peers.

Last week activist Sam Moore encouraged frustrated North Carolina residents and visitors to contact the governor every time they used a public bathroom “to confirm your adherence or disregard of #HB2.” On Facebook, Moore shared a graphic of a toilet in a private stall, with text indicating the phone number for the governor’s office, accompanied by the hashtags #PeeingForPat and #HB2. 

Watch the video below.

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