For more than a year, social media has been flush with images that, on the surface, seem contradictory to the cause of transgender acceptance: trans men snapping selfies in ladies rest rooms, trans women doing the same in mens rooms. They did so to make a point: that it’s wrong to prevent transgender individuals from using the lavatories that match their gender identity.
And as opponents and transphobes have stepped up their efforts to create laws that would make it illegal for trans people to pee in peace, gender nonconforming and nonbinary individuals and allies have raised an alarm that these images do potential harm by reinforcing stereotypes of men as predators and women as sex objects.
Here’s just a sample of the impactful, and often controversial, images from across the internet:
1. James P Sheffield
@JayShef It's now the law for me to share a restroom with your wife. #HB2 #trans #NorthCarolina #shameonNC
Friends, this is me. In a women's restroom. In Charlotte. North Carolina. BREAKING THE LAW BY MY MERE PRESENCE.
And I will KEEP breaking this unjust law. Not only does my conscience demand it—my safety requires it. And I will speak out boldly and I will give sacrificially until this law and all others like it are consigned to the dung heap of history, where they belong...
...regardless of the consequences. If you want to stop me, Governor McCrory, you're just going to have to arrest me.
According to North Carolina law, this is the locker room I belong in.
They say I am dangerous. They say I am a threat. They say I am in disguise and will harm women and children. They wrote bigotry and discrimination into their state bylaws and attempted to filter it through religious liberty. I am one of many. I stand strong and firm within the center of a Divine sense of history and tribe. And I will not be moved. But in here ...I am unarmed and unprotected.