Tennessee Lawmakers Bring Back Bathroom Bills

Written by SK Ashby

It's been some years since the last time Republican lawmakers tried to litigate access to public restrooms in this manner, but lawmakers in Tennessee are taking another stab at it.

Republicans who control the state legislature have passed a bill that requires businesses to post special signage if their bathrooms are accessible to transgender people.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee lawmakers have passed a bill that requires businesses or government facilities open to the public to post a sign if they let transgender people use multi-person bathrooms, locker rooms or changing rooms associated with their gender identity.

The Human Rights Campaign, which opposes the proposed requirement, says it would be the first of its kind. [...]

The American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee said it is “evaluating our legal options” on the bathroom sign requirement, which is a signature away from becoming law and would kick in July 1.

You know, we don't wear nametags or announce ourselves.

In any case, the obvious intent is here is to intimidate businesses into writing their own policies against transgender bathroom use or to intimidate transgender people from going out in public in the first place. Republicans want to make it as legally difficult and socially uncomfortable as possible to be transgender in America.

Lawmakers in Tennessee are also advancing several other anti-trans bills including a separate bathroom bill for schools.

In addition to this anti-transgender bill, the legislature has advanced SB 1229 (HB 529), an anti-LGBTQ education bill to Gov. Lee’s desk where he has until May 3 to sign/veto/allow it to become law. The “student bathroom bill 2.0”, HB 1233 (SB 1367) advanced on a concurrence vote on the House Floor and will now move to the governor’s desk. The anti-trans medical care ban, HB 1027 (SB 126) is scheduled for a final House Floor vote on Monday, May 3.

This is all Republicans have left.

Most state legislatures only meet once every two years unless a special session is called and they're using their precious time to legislate transgender people out of public life. They don't do health care, education, or infrastructure unless to cut them. They don't do anything positive or constructive.

There is no one more useless in the world than a Republican lawmaker.