Transgender Texans like myself are deeply concerned about the upcoming legislative session. The Last session we threw ourselves into the fray with a miss placed sense of optimism begat by ignorance. If I had known the nature of the vile Texas “freedom Caucus” I would have done things a lot differently.
So what are the chances that a bathroom bill will be introduced this session? I’d give it an about 100% chance.
Last session the Republican-dominated Senate passed bathroom bills despite overwhelming vocal opposition from every sector of society. They just don’t give a rats ass about how many gender non-binary children die or how many adults lives they destroy in order to satisfy their hateful agenda.
The saving grace came in the form of a San Antonio Republican, House Speaker Joe Straus, a moderate who actually listened and let his moral compass guide him.
Well, as we know Joe Straus retired. So what about the man who replaced him?
Republican Dennis Bonnen is set to become the next House Speaker. While Bonnen didn’t get a chance to vote on a bathroom bill on the floor of the house, that was only because of Straus.
But it does appear that he supported a last-ditch end-around attempt to get a bill he was championing through his house committee with a bathroom bill amendment intact.
From 2017 the San Antonio Express News
House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Rep. Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, who sponsored Senate Bill 2078, the school safety bill to which the bathroom amendment was added, said it “pretty clearly states that, based on a student’s biological sex, they can’t be in a multiuse facility of a different sex.”
He said “proper enforcement” of it by the state attorney general would ensure “separation between sexes.”
Asked if the House proposal amounted to a ban on transgender students using the facilities of the gender with which they identify, Bonnen said, “I don’t like using the word ban. I think creating separation between sexes is the right thing to do, and that is what the bill accomplishes and with proper enforcement from the attorney general’s office that can happen.
Although the Texas Legislature has received over 300 bills in early filing for this session, none of these have lower numbers indicating that it is a priority. But the haters have already gathered in September 2018 to publicly gloat in the upcoming slaughter of innocent children.
INTO reports that Sen. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham), the author of SB 6, confirmed to the anti-LGBTQ group Texas Values that she would push another “bathroom bill” next year. The conservative legislator claimed the alleged problem of “men in women’s bathrooms” is the “women’s rights issue of our time.”
“The only way that you fail is to not try,” Kolkhorst said in Sept. 2017.
Gov. Greg Abbott, who handily won re-election on Nov. 6, claimed the issue is not on his “agenda” in 2019 but notably declined to say whether he would sign anti-trans legislation if it crossed his desk.
ballotpedia indicates that this wasn’t a one-off for the far right Bonnen as he supports the religious freedom to discriminate, opposes women’s right to body autonomy and healthcare.
It would be safe to say, save a miracle, the Texas Legislature will kill us this spring.