Kat Blaque is Matthew Wilkins.
Kat Blaque is Matthew Wilkins.
Mary Smith (a pseudonym), a 15-year old student at Frederick County Public Schools, and her mother (identified in the suit as Jane Doe) filed a lawsuit against the Frederick County Board of Education in the District Court of Maryland alleging Smith’s “civil rights, including her fundamental right to bodily privacy, are being intentionally violated” as well as Doe’s “fundamental parental rights to the care, custody, control, upbringing, and information regarding her child is also being intentionally violated” by the school board’s new policies which “permit students of one sex to enter and use restrooms, locker rooms and shower facilities (“bath facilities”) designated for members of the opposite sex.” According to the complaint, “The policies also allow for males who identify as females to compete against females under Title IX sports programs and share hotel rooms with them on trips, violating the rights of students who are of the female sex.”
“Defendants purposefully and intentionally violated Plaintiffs’ rights and have further attempted to harass and coerce the minor Plaintiff and her mother into abridging their freedom of speech by threatening retaliation, expulsion and permanent negative academic records for failure to use the pronouns now mandated which upon information and belief, call a male a female when the person or government official requires such pronoun use.”
The lawsuit alleges civil rights violations under the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, Articles 5 and 24 of the Maryland Constitution, Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, invasion of privacy, and violation of Maryland statutes governing single-sex facilities in public buildings. Plaintiffs are seeking “a permanent injunction on the policy and demanding the school district communicate with parents regarding all issues pertaining to a student’s sexuality or gender identity. It also demands that only females be allowed to use the female bathrooms in schools, and that males be barred from competing with females in athletics.”
Roxane Gay is a bisexual woman who spends her time on Twitter contributing to anti-lesbian conversations. In response to a Tweet by Kat Blaque, a man who identifies as a woman and who spends his time harassing lesbians for being lesbians, Gay suggested Blaque “slap” Arielle Scarcella, a lesbian blogger.
Lesbians don’t need non-lesbians telling us what lesbian sexuality is, framing lesbian sexuality as bigoted, or speaking for us at all, ever. We don’t need “queer feminists” telling us there’s something wrong with being a lesbian. We certainly don’t need bisexual women like Roxane Gay (who previously “identified as a lesbian even though she was still attracted to men”) encouraging violence against lesbians on the basis that we’re lesbians.
Shut up about lesbians, Roxane, you don’t speak for us.
Women on Twitter were quick to recognize and address Gay’s blatant lesbian-hating and homophobic remarks for the garbage they are. See Claire’s excellent post on her award-winning blog, Sister Outrider, titled “Dear Roxane – An Open Letter on Queer Feminism & Lesbophobia” for more on this topic.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) filed an amended complaint on behalf of Gavin Grimm, a female teen who identifies as a transgender boy. Grimm’s lawsuit previously sought a preliminary injunction which would allow Grimm to use sex-segregated facilities reserved for male students at Gloucester High School in Virginia. According to the ACLU, “Gavin graduated from high school in June. Rather than continuing to wait for a ruling on his request for a preliminary injunction (which was filed more than two years ago), we’re moving forward with his claim for damages and his demand to end the anti-trans policy permanently.”
The amended complaint alleges discrimination on the basis of transgender status in violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment (claiming “Transgender people as a class exhibit immutable or distinguishing characteristics that define them as a discrete group”) and discrimination “on the basis of sex” under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.
Grimm is seeking a declaration that the Board’s policy violated, and continues to violate “Gavin’s rights under the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972,” nominal damages, reasonable attorneys’ fees, and “A permanent injunction requiring the Board to allow Gavin to use the same restrooms as other male alumni.”
Pine-Richland School District, a Pennsylvania school district, agreed to pay a $135,000 settlement in a lawsuit over the school district’s policy regarding sex-segregated facilities. The three plaintiffs, who identify as transgender and who sued the school because “the school wouldn’t allow them to use the restroom corresponding with gender identity rather than birth gender,” were awarded $20,000 each and $75,000 was awarded to their attorney. In agreeing to settle the dispute, the school district now allows students to use the (previously) sex-segregated facilities that “consistently and uniformly [match their] asserted gender identity.”
On August 9, 2017 the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) and GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders (GLAD) filed a lawsuit on behalf of five service members who identify as transgender challenging the President Trump’s directive to ban transgender individuals from serving in the U.S. Armed Forces. According to the complaint, “The directive to reinstate a ban on open service by transgender people violates both the Equal Protection component of the Fifth Amendment and the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution.”
The lawsuit also notes, “The categorical exclusion of transgender people from military service lacks a rational basis, is arbitrary, and cannot be justified by sufficient federal interests.”
The Plaintiffs seek “a declaratory judgment that the President’s directive to categorically exclude transgender people from military service is unconstitutional;” a “preliminary injunction prohibiting the categorical exclusion of transgender people from military service;” a “permanent injunction prohibiting the categorical exclusion of transgender
people from military service;” and “reasonable costs and attorneys’ fees.”