Michelle Duggar of TLC's 19 Kids and Counting has a new robocall asserting that a law to protect citizens against discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations, which includes gender identity as one of the protected classes, will allow men who are child predators to claim to be women and be protected in criminal actions.
Of course, it's total bullshit.
The city of Fayetteville, Arkansas is considering new civil rights act to end discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, socioeconomic background, marital status, or veteran status. The act defines discrimination as any "act, policy or practice that has the effect of subjecting any person to differential treatment as a result of that person's real or perceived race, ethnicity, national origin, age (if 18 years of age or older), gender, gender identity, gender expression, familial status, marital status, socioeconomic background, religion, sexual orientation, disability or veteran status."
Good stuff! So what's the problem? Oh yeah, that repeated canard about trans women actually being child predator men. Let's take a listen:
Hello, this is Michelle Duggar. I'm calling to inform you of some shocking news that would affect the safety of Northwest Arkansas women and children. The Fayetteville City Council is voting on an ordinance this Tuesday night that would allow men – yes, I said men – to use women's and girls' restrooms, locker rooms, showers, sleeping areas and other areas that are designated for females only. I don't believe the citizens of Fayetteville would want males with past child predator convictions that claim they are female to have a legal right to enter private areas that are reserved for women and girls. I doubt that Fayetteville parents would stand for a law that would endanger their daughters or allow them to be traumatized by a man joining them in their private space. We should never place the preference of an adult over the safety and innocence of a child. Parents, who do you want undressing next to your daughter at the public swimming pool's private changing area?
I'm getting awfully tired of having to explain some really basic shit, but here we go again:
Trans women are not men. Trans women are women. The cisgender men who would seek to harm just aren't doing it by pretending to be women. It's not their method of operation. It's not happening. It ignores that child predators are about power and opportunity. So not only would they not "demean" themselves (in their eyes) by "pretending" to be women, but doing so would be outside of their patterns of behavior. It's not just a red herring, it's the whole damn school of crimson hued fish.
No matter how many attempts are made to place these two disparate groups together, it's never going to change the facts. At least the City Attorney, Kit Williams, isn't having any of this garbage. He responded with this memo:
The claim that this ordinance would provide predators with access to women's restrooms in order to assault or leer at girls or women is nothing more than fear-mongering. This ordinance does allow transgender people to use the bathroom in which they feel most comfortable and physically safe. Transgender people — who are far more likely to be the victims of harassment and violence if forced to use a bathroom that is inconsistent with their gender identity or expression — deserve to have the ability to use the bathroom in peace and safety. Using the bathroom is a basic human function and denying that to a person is inhumane. This ordinance has nothing to do with the concerns and examples...provided — the acts perpetrated by the criminals in those stories will continue to be criminal acts.
It's worth noting that the robocall is claimed by FreeFayettville, which has ties to the Arkansas Research Council, which itself is tied to the Family Research Council, for which, wouldn't you know it, Michelle Duggar's son just happens to work.
UPDATE: Fayetteville City Council passed ordinance banning sexual orientation, gender identity/expression discrimination at 3:20am in a 6-2 vote.
Image via Getty.