Entries by Joseph Backholm

The Shakedown of Chef John Howie

  A popular chef got cooked last week.  By the tolerance mob. Chef John Howie owns a number of Seattle area restaurants and is also the chef for the Seattle Seahawks.  By all account he’s a really decent guy; generous and active in the community. But isn’t that kind of what you’d expect from the […]

What Makes You, You?

  What makes you, you? And what does it mean to be true to yourself?  On a personal level, we all wrestle with these questions. But the way we answer these questions has cultural consequences as well. One view of “self” claims that “living authentically” means being true to your desires. “If it feels good […]

Why Planned Parenthood is Suing FPIW

  Two days ago, FPIW’s communications director, Zach Freeman, was served legal papers naming him as a defendant in a lawsuit. The suit was filed by 10 unnamed plaintiffs, identified only as “Jane and John Does”, asking the court to prohibit the University of Washington from releasing public records that had been requested by Mr. […]

North Carolina Takes a Stand for Bathroom Privacy

Finally, someone is standing up to the bully. Last week the the North Carolina General Assembly convened a one-day special session to pass a law protecting privacy in locker rooms and bathrooms. In doing so, they repealed an ordinance in the city of Charlotte that would, among other things, allow men access to women’s locker […]

Human Rights Commission at War with Itself

In the wake of a man at Greenlake Park in Seattle who cited the Human Rights Commission’s new bathroom rule as justification for changing in the women’s locker room, the Washington State Human Rights Commission issued a statement defending its new policy. The Human Rights Commission said in their statement that said, “Men cannot go […]

Fear and the Politics of Bathrooms

“Stop being afraid.” That was the message from the Senators who voted against a bill that would have repealed the Human Right’s Commissions open bathroom mandate yesterday afternoon in Olympia. The rule, passed in December, requires a business or school to allow access to private areas based on the gender the person is identifying with […]

How Does the Bathroom Rule Affect Churches?

  The Washington Human Rights Commission recently passed a new rule making it illegal to keep a man out of the women’s restroom if he “identifies” or “expresses” as a woman. One of the most frequent questions people have in response is, “what kind of an impact this will have on churches and religious organizations?” […]