Letter to the editor: Fight over bathroom access comes to Edmonds


Dear Editor:

Local petitioners supporting I-1552 supported by the group Just Want Privacy (JWP) (https://justwantprivacy.org) were seen Thursday morning on Sunset Avenue looking to approve a state-wide version of the North Carolina bathroom bill. The petitioner was heard stating that there are children who are attempting to use the bathroom and shower in with children of the “opposite sex” and that they would like to vote in a state-wide anti-transgender initiative.

Nearly 50 percent of all transgender youth have seriously thought about suicide, which makes a bill targeting transgender youth disturbing to the transgender ally community. (http://www.yspp.org/about_suicide/statistics.htm). As of 11 p.m. the petitioner had many signatures from local residents.

Washington state’s open bathroom policy took effect December 26, 2015. Transgender activists see the fight for bathroom accessibility as a fight for equal rights and the current backlash as transphobia and hate. UCLA’s Williams Institute reports that nearly 70% of transgender people experience harassment in binary gender restrooms (http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/Herman-Gendered-Restrooms-and-Minority-Stress-June-2013.pdf).

There is no evidence that there have been any occurrences of inappropriateness by transgender persons in bathrooms. Just Want Privacy needs 330,000 signatures by July 7 to move the initiative forward, of which they have approximately half. The group No On I-1552 is collecting signatures via a digital petition Decline to Sign (https://secure.wawont.org/page/s/declinetosign) in opposition to the Just Want Privacy initiative. JWP accepts national funding from conservatives wanting to change local policies on transgender inclusiveness.

Rev. M. Jamil Scott
International Order of Buddhist Ministers
Woodinville Unitarian Universalist Church




Rev. M. Jamil Scott
International Order of Buddhist Ministers
Woodinville Unitarian Universalist Church


  1. I am saddened to hear that this group was able to gather several signatures in Edmonds. I grew up and have lived in areas that were LGTBQ-friendly, so it is hard for me to understand the fear that drives people to pursue legislation that would take away the hard-fought rights of my friends and neighbors–trans adults and children, when the facts don’t support any of the fears people have about this issue.

    I hope that anyone who feels that trans people are a threat to their safety will *please* take the time to learn about the myths, and the reality of who trans people are and the very real threats they face. There is a lot of ugly misinformation being passed around on the internet. Here’s a link to an article that dispels some of the common myths: http://www.cnn.com/2017/03/07/health/transgender-bathroom-law-facts-myths/index.html. Much thanks to anyone taking the time to do a bit of research and make up their own mind.

  2. Letting men into women’s and girl’s dressing rooms because they say they are trans is endangering the most vulnerable in our society. Anyone can enter a women’s bathroom or dressing room with any intent and police cannot stop them. This is not hate behind this petition, it’s common sense. For years transgenders have used women’s restrooms and no one had an issue. It’s been politicized to divide and distract from real issues in our government. This law opens the door for any man, with any intention to use women and girls bathrooms, dressing rooms, showers at will. Yes, there have been issues and clearly the stage is set for perverts to abuse the law.
    Common sense should be used here. Nobody hates transgenders, but what is hated is putting all the children and disabled at risk because of less than 1% of the population that nobody took issue with to begin with. Thank God there are people trying to protect the children! We need everyone to sign the petition before July 6 to stop the insanity.

    • I agree with you that people are using this issue to distract from real issues 100%. But, it is NOT common sense. There have been no attacks by transgendered people, because of this legislation. Meanwhile, trans people forced to use restrooms that correspond with their birth genders HAVE been attacked.

      Pervs will be pervs no matter what the law is, but the vulnerable people here are trans folks who would be forced to use bathrooms that don’t correspond to their gender.

  3. That is sad to hear. I know that Edmonds strives to be a place of acceptance for all people. Thanks you Catherine for urging people to become informed.

  4. How does one prevent heterosexual boys from claiming they are trans in order to shower with the girls? Is there a trans test you must pass? Would a better solution be single occupant facilities for kids uncomfortable with group situations, much like you have family restrooms at malls etc?

    • You would prevent it the same way you prevent kids from doing any and all illegal and immoral activities. Raise them to know right from wrong. Just because theoretically a person could abuse the law doesn’t mean that gangs of teens boys are going to become criminals.

      I’m with you on single occupant bathrooms though. Or even bathrooms with more privacy. In other countries I noticed that bathrooms doors didn’t have cracks and were actually private even in group restrooms. I don’t know why the US likes big cracks in the doors. Private options for everyone seems so much more civilized.

  5. I’m more concerned about these people that are paying such close attention to who’s in the bathroom. Take care of your business and move on with your lives.

  6. So let me get this straight, all this law is saying is you must use the bathroom gender (women/men) that you were born to be at birth? And people are against this? Edmonds should be glad we have bathrooms!!! It only took 20 plus years to get public restrooms here. If your not careful you meaningful people will end up shutting our long sought after restrooms down over such controversy. How lucky we are that we have a door on the bathroom, many countries don’t. Can we for once be happy to have these bathrooms and not go overboard? I’m getting pretty tired all this political stuff. I don’t care whom you marry, have sex with, dress up to be, whatever…..Just stop for a minute and look at the things that are GOOD IN EDMONDS. I call you do gooders….stirring the pot.

  7. When I was approached for signature the person was very intentional with her words. “Protect our children. Adults of the opposite sex want to be in the bathroom at the same time as your child.” Once I started asking questions she quickly walked away from me, knowing that she wasn’t going to get my signature. Always ask questions before you sign a petition .

  8. Dear Rev. M. Jamil Scott:

    You said in your letter: “There is no evidence that there have been any occurrences of inappropriateness by transgender persons in bathrooms.”

    Well, just because you hold yourself out there as a reverend, that doesn’t mean that you’re being truthful. Or maybe you just don’t know much about the subject matter.

    Here’s the proof.


    Here’s another one for you.


    Would you like another?


    The key to fixing this bathroom and locker room issue is to give everyone safety and privacy. That’s right, put “everyone” in the “other” bathroom. And I say that as a famous non-binary, transgender person. Feel free to Google my name.

    We have this endless, unproductive battle going on because while women and children are being harmed in the foreground, in the background all the parties doing the fighting are too heavily invested in their battles over identity; than they are in actually protecting the women and children. Are all the rape kits tested in your jurisdiction?

    For the trans community it’s a battle over the right to be males and females. And for the religious and conservative communities, it’s a battle over who has a right to be males and females. I’ve got news for both of you groups: your fight isn’t solving the problem for women and children that are being harmed, right now.

    • So, the best examples you could find were of two men dressed as women (not sure if they were trans) luring a kid to a bathroom in 2001, a trans person who punched someone in self defense after a woman kicked the door in on them when they were going to the bathroom in 1999, and only one recent case that looks like it was a real trans person being creepy in a dressing room. You must have searched hard for those examples.

      You made the point for me that trans people are less of a threat in public restrooms.

      Videotaping people changing is already against the law. Straight/cis-gendered people get busted for the same thing all the time. A person is much more likely to be harassed, raped, assaulted, in a restroom or changing room by a non-trans person. Your examples are a stretch, and as evidence, they fail.

      • First it was “it’s never happened.” I proved that was a lie.

        So then it switches to “well. but, but, we don’t think they’re even trans, those are men.” And that wasn’t 2001, it was 2011. In case you haven’t looked lately, the formal definition for a transgender female is someone who was born male and has a female gender identity. So that means you’re still biologically a male.

        I’d prefer not to spend my days calling out members of my own community for being disingenuous, but the behavior here requires it.

        • The first story about the teen is made up using a photo of a trans person who was arrested somehow in several other states at the time this took place. The second was about a trans person being jailed for self defense. The last is a mentally ill person who has never been evaluated as trans. You however do discredit yourself with your websites with using names of trans people you claim to be contributors without their permission, illegally posting copyrighted material, and seem to want to hurt trans people. Your articles posted in known hate sites and very alt right sites disregards all known scientific and medically factual information on the trans process. You dishonor the LGBT people and your military service. Conduct unbecoming, false statements, and theft to name a few.

  9. People should be able to use the bathroom. Period. Forcing trans women to use the men’s room has put trans women in harms way and many have been killed. Protecting people from harm is the objective. People should be free to use the restroom that is going to keep them safe from violence and harassment.

  10. Let’s think this through. A person born male, looks like a woman, acts like a woman and dresses like a woman. How would that person fare in the men’s room? Or a person born female, looks like a man, acts like a man and dresses like a man should use the women’s room. How would that go over in the women’s room? The truth is, we all likely have been in the same bathroom with a transgender and never knew. This is hysteria about a problem that doesn’t exist, kind of like voter fraud.

      • Frankly that seems like the sort of extreme example that can’t usefully be extrapolated from. It happened – but can you protect from EVERYTHING, all the time – especially when the thing guarded against is so rare? Surely that penalizes all the people who have no harm in mind at all, but simply go about their normal life as who they are.

        As to stereotyping, the transgender people I have known – maybe 12 or 15 – have passed perfectly as the gender they transitioned into; sending them to the bathroom of the opposite gender to their identification and appearance would cause endless problems and embarrassment, and that seems both cruel and counterproductive.

        What is your idea for a solution?

        • Jaime Shupe so you want to make a single public accommodation space for everyone which of course is financially impossible and that the rate of violonce from trans people is so minute that you would have abetter chance of simultaneously winning the Powerball, Megamillions, and your state lottery five times in a row. You should really know your facts rather than reciting TERF and Alt Right alternative facts and propaganda.

  11. 99.99% of the time the argument boils down to bad behavior by men. Transgender women are afraid to use the men’s bathroom because of what men might do to them. Women are afraid that a man pretending to be transgender will enter a bathroom and hurt them. Instead of arguing about who should use which bathroom, we should be focusing on how boys and men are socialized in our society. That is the real crisis! Something is very, very wrong when most women and many men live in fear of being harmed by men.

  12. 99.99% – really? Is that fake news?

    Move on – what about paying more property tax here than in Ritzeville for schools?

    That’s unacceptable.


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