Stop the presses! Someone in the legislature actually did something sensible!
Yesterday we brought you the news that the a bill before the legislature would ban transgender individuals from using a bathroom or changing room other than that of the sex on their birth certificates - i.e., if a man has had sex reassignment surgery to become a woman, she would still need to use the men's bathroom and try on clothes in the men's dressing rooms because she had been born a man, never mind what her genitals now look like. And because the bill was so overarching, anyone could face a $50 fine for using the bathroom of the opposite sex.
Both offensive and silly, the bill drew national outrage yesterday - so much so that its sponsor in the state Senate, Sen. Bo Watson, quickly withdrew the legislation. He told the Chattanooga Times Free Press, "[W]e have more pressing issues before us that we need to focus our attention on and we don't need to get sidetracked." To which we can only say, AMEN.
However, Watson's withdrawal of the bill doesn't mean the issue is over. The bill's sponsor in the house, Chattanooga's Rep. Richard Floyd, doesn't sound like the type of guy to give up on the issue. The TFP reports:
Floyd said earlier Thursday he introduced the bill after reading a news story about a Texas woman who said she was fired from Macy's after stopping a male teen dressed as a woman from using a dressing room.
"It could happen here," Floyd said. "I believe if I was standing at a dressing room and my wife or one of my daughters was in the dressing room and a man tried to go in there -- I don't care if he thinks he's a woman and tries on clothes with them in there -- I'd just try to stomp a mudhole in him and then stomp him dry.
"Don't ask me to adjust to their perverted way of thinking and put my family at risk," he said. "We cannot continue to let these people dominate how society acts and reacts. Now if somebody thinks he's a woman and he's a man and wants to try on women's clothes, let him take them into the men's bathroom or dressing room."
All Floyd has to do is find another sponsor in the Senate for the bill to once more be alive - and given some of the men we know in the Senate, we can't imagine there aren't a handful that agree with him. So keep an eye out for what looking to be the most pressing issue of the legislative season - how fast can Tennessee race to the bottom?