Obama’s directive and DOJ’s lawsuit against North Carolina seen as controversial
To many, the debate over the “Bathroom Bill” – the North Carolina law known formally as HB2, mandating that transgender people use the restroom corresponding to their biologically assigned gender – is a nonissue, an inherent distraction from the many important policy debates worth engaging between now and November’s election.
After all, the law was passed on the pretext ensuring “safety” for women and young children, but no transgender person has ever assaulted someone in a public restroom.
This must be a law only supported by evangelical extremists and Tea Party conservatives, right?
A new poll conducted by CBS News/New York Times shows the nation equitably divided strictly along party lines over whether transgender people should be allowed to use the public restrooms of their gender identity.
In the poll, 46% said transgender people should be required to use the restroom corresponding with their biological gender assigned at birth, while 41% said they should be able to use the restroom corresponding to their actual gender identity.
Unsurprisingly, Democrats, college graduates and those under the age of 45 were more likely to be supportive of the latter, while their counterparts remain fervently in support of HB2 and other bills seemingly on the horizon.
Additionally, nearly six in 10 Americans say that regardless of their opinions on transgender rights, individual state governments should have the autonomy to decide this issue free from federal intervention.
In response to this particular question, 51% of Democrats thought the federal government was justified in its involvement, and more than 75% of Republicans responded in favor of states rights.
The nationwide poll was conducted in the aftermath of President Obama issuing a directive to public schools last week outlining the different ways to avoid discrimination against transgender students, which was released immediately following the lawsuit and countersuit filed against each other by North Carolina and the Department of Justice (DOJ) last week regarding the legality of HB2’s implementation.
The Obama administration has stood by its belief that the legislation violates the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.