Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson is making news again. This time, he’s leading a group of twelve states in support of the Obama Administration’s use of executive fiat to prohibit schools and businesses from maintaining sex-separated facilities.
The bathroom directive mandates schools to allow students to use whichever showers, locker rooms, housing, changing facilities, and restrooms are consistent with their internal gender identity, regardless of their biological sex.
In May, officials from eleven states led by Texas filed a lawsuit against the federal government and Obama administration officials after federal officials threatened to withhold federal education funding from states and schools that refused to comply with the new directive. An additional ten states joined together on a separate lawsuit a few months later in an effort to block the Obama Administration’s executive action, led by Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson.
Attorney General Bob Ferguson, on behalf of Washington State and eleven other states and Washington, D.C., filed an amicus brief today imploring the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas to deny Texas’ request for an injunction to block the administration’s directive.
Writing in support of the new federal directive that opponents say undermines federalism and infringes upon states’ rights, Ferguson condescendingly speculated that the only possible reason for the states’ opposition to the bathroom directive is their “negative attitudes, misunderstandings, or misplaced fear about transgender people.”
Ferguson also asserted that “their [the states] allegations of safety risks are unsupported hyperbole.” In fact, according to Ferguson, the federal government’s bathroom directive will “overwhelmingly benefit the public.”
Attorney General Ferguson must be unaware of the rash of numerous unsettling incidents sparked by policy changes allowing anyone into whichever facility they choose. The University of Toronto temporarily suspended its policy allowing students to use the showers that correspond with their gender identity last fall after male students were accused of recording females showering in the women’s locker room.
Earlier this month, police in Idaho arrested a man, who identifies as a transgender woman, after he took pictures of a woman changing in a Target dressing room. Other similar incidents have occurred at Target stores in North Dakota, Massachusetts, Texas, and Ohio.