Watch ACLU's Chase Strangio Debunk The “Bathroom Predator” Myth Behind North Carolina's Anti-LGBT Law

From the March 28 edition of MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show:

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CHASE STRANGIO: This morning the ACLU along with our partners at Lambda Legal filed a lawsuit against Governor McCrory and other officials in North Carolina over HB2. To us it's very clear that this law is unconstitutional, that it violates the equality and liberty protections under the Constitution. And that it also violates federal law, federal law that protects against sex discrimination in educational institutions receiving federal funding. So our lawsuit has both constitutional claims as well as Title IX claims.

RACHEL MADDOW: You obviously have plaintiffs in this case. Some of the defendants include the governor himself, the University of North Carolina system. Tell us about your plaintiffs and why this would have a day-to-day effect on their lives.

STRANGIO: As you mention, one of the things about this law that is so disturbing is that it really does combine all of the horrible things that we've seen in the almost 200 bills that have been introduced this session targeting LGBT people. And so many of those laws target trans people in particular. This law specifically mandates that transgender people use the bathroom and the locker room in public -- in government buildings and in schools -- across the state that is accords with what's listed on their birth certificate, and not based on who they are. So our clients are two transgender men, who are men, who live their lives as men, who had up until this emergency legislative session gone to school, used the bathroom along with other men, gone to work, used the bathroom along with other men at work. And now all of a sudden the legislature has said 'nope, you can no longer do that,' and so our clients are immediately impacted by this as are all the transgender people in North Carolina. And I think what we know about this conversation, and I think it's really important to note this, is that there has been a lie that's been peddled -- several lies actually, that have been peddled across the country in pushing these anti-transgender bills, as well as in trying to push back against affirmative nondiscrimination protections for LGBT people. And those lies are, first, that protecting trans people somehow allows predators into restrooms to assault non-transgender people. And the even more insidious lie is that somehow transgender people ourselves are a threat to the existence of other people. So our clients are standing up and saying 'no, that is not true.' Trans people deserve to have access to public space. It is not a threat to anyone's public safety to extend nondiscrimination protections to people based on gender identity and sexual orientation. And there has never been ever, in the history of nondiscrimination protections or anything in the United States, an example of someone exploiting a nondiscrimination ordinance for the purpose of assaulting someone in a bathroom.


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