Bathroom Buddies: Trans Woman's Instagram Pic With Texas Gov Goes Viral
"How will the Potty Police know I'm transgender if the Governor doesn't?" wrote Ashley Smith.
As Texas considers a bill that would restrict transgender people's access to public restrooms, a San Antonio trans woman is getting attention for a photo of her with Gov. Greg Abbott, noting that he doesn't know she's trans.
Architect Ashley Smith took the photo Friday at a rally where the Republican governor announced his reelection bid and they discussed education, CNN reports. She shared it over the weekend on Instagram and Facebook with the caption "How will the Potty Police know I'm transgender if the Governor doesn't?" It had gotten nearly 5,000 likes as of Wednesday.
"I wanted to show that transgender are all over the place. Some transgender don't pass as easily as I was able to with the governor," Smith told Reuters Wednesday, adding, "We're just ordinary people and we don't cause trouble in restrooms.".
The Texas legislature went into special session this week to consider a variety of bills, and it is scheduled to debate the restroom measure Friday, The Dallas Morning News reports. Its author, Republican Sen. Lois Kolkhorst, would not offer details or her current legislation, but the bill she introduced during the regular session "would have barred trans kids from using restrooms at school that match their gender identity and would have rendered unenforceable city laws protecting the rights of all trans people to use the bathroom they want," according to the paper.
Restroom legislation is a priority for Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who like Abbott is a conservative Republican. Abbott has said he supports such legislation in principle. House Speaker Joe Straus, a moderate Republican, is opposed to it. He has noted that trans people have a high risk of suicide, exacerbated by discriminatory legislation, and said, "I don't want the suicide of a single Texan on my hands."