04 October 2012

Potty Mouth In Calgary

It's always about the bathrooms.

At least, it is whenever someone wants to oppose equal rights for transgender people.

That's exactly what's happening now in Canada, the country that beat its southern neighbor in legalizing same-sex marriage.

MP (Member of Parliament) Rob Anders of Calgary is calling on his fellow Canadiens and Canadiennes to oppose Bill C-279, which would recognize gender identity and expression in the hate crimes section of Canada's Criminal Code. It also would offer protection to gender-variant individuals protection under the Canada Human Rights Act.

Anders and other opponents of C-279 have dubbed it the "Bathroom Bill."  (Original, isn't he?)  In a petition on his website, Anders claims that the bill's aim "is to give transgendered men access to women's public washroom facilities."

Anders' colleague in the Canadian Parliament, Randall Garrison, said that Anders' petition shows a basic misunderstanding of the bill's concepts.  "He obviously missed the fact that similar provisions have been adopted in [the Northwest Territories], Manitoba and Ontario, with none of the absurd consequences he fears," Garrison wrote in a statement.  "At best, Mr. Anders failed to do his homework."

Let's hope that Anders is merely a poor researcher or simply read the bill in a rush.  Otherwise, he is, as Garrison says, "deliberately promoting prejudice against transsexual and transgender Canadians by equating them with sex offenders and paedophiles."

Given Anders' history, he may well be exploiting stereotypes.  Or, he may simply be a "shoot from the lip" type of person.  Recently, he claimed that current New Democratic Party leader Thomas Mulcair deliberately hastened the death of his predecessor, Jack Layton. 

Perhaps he's so obseesed with what happens (or, more precisely, doesn't happen) in bathrooms because he spends so much time in them. What comes out of his mouth may be evidence of that.

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