The Supreme Court Temporarily Blocks A Trans Bathroom Ruling For A Virginia Teen
The unnecessary war against transgender people using the bathroom that correlates with their true gender identity continues. Gavin Grimm, a transgender teen, won a small victory back in April when the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals granted him the right to use the boys’ bathroom at his Gloucester, Virginia high school. However, on Wednesday, the Supreme Court temporarily blocked the transgender rights decision, essentially siding in favor of the school board for the time being.
The Gloucester County School Board previously said its policy was meant to protect students’ “bodily privacy” and Gavin could use the single-user restrooms located in various parts of the school. But, Gavin argued that these bathrooms were inconvenient for his schedule and wanted to simply use the boys’ bathroom. His case has been highly visible and watched by both school administrations and those who fight for transgender rights. And, just when it seemed like there was progress, it has been suddenly derailed.
The Supreme Court vote was reached with a 5-3 vote. Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan (all women… interesting) voted against maintaining the status quo. Justice Stephen Breyer revealed that he voted to “preserve the status quo” as a courtesy while the Court decides whether to review the decision. Until then, everything is in a limbo and Gavin is back at square one.
One of Gavin’s lawyers, Joshua Block, spoke up about the Gloucester County School Board’s policy, saying it’s in violation of Title IX, a federal law banning sex discrimination in schools. He also believed that the lower court order should remain in place for Gavin.
Block told CNN, “No irreparable harm will occur [if Gavin] is allowed to use the boys’ restroom while this court considers whether to grant certiorari… Banishing transgender students from restrooms used by their peers unquestionably interferes with their equal educational opportunity under Title IX.”
On the other hand, the Gloucester County School Board released a statement praising the Supreme Court decision:
“The school board welcomes the Supreme Court’s decision as the new school year approaches. The board continues to believe that its resolution of this complex matter fully considered the interests of all students and parents in the Gloucester County school system.”
It seems wrong to take a step backward after the local court ruled in Gavin’s favor. Being a 16-year-old is hard enough without having to go through the trials of navigating the world as a trans person. Then, he and his parents took on the major fight of standing up for his right to use the boys’ restroom.
The case becomes not only major news in a conservative Virginia city, but across the United States, as people fight for transgender rights everywhere. Now, like Block stated, he faces a school year with the shame of having to either use the girls’ bathroom or go out of his way to use a private bathroom.
Seriously. It’s a bathroom people. And anyone who is afraid of a trans person in the bathroom should be afraid of the really scary people – those who don’t wash their hands.