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The Coming Nightmare of a “Transsexual Rights
and Hate Crimes" Law in Massachusetts:

Why Bill H1722 Must Be Defeated

by Amy Contrada, MassResistance

Table of Contents

Text of H1722

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PART 3:  Public Accommodations
Bill H1722, Sections 24-26


These sections are most dangerous to the public good. “Gender identity or expression” would be added as a category that cannot be discriminated against in “public accommodations.” This could include almost any place outside of private homes, even churches and schools.

If H1722 is passed, public accommodations must allow any sort of “gender identity and expression” imaginable to be displayed, since the phrase is essentially undefined in the bill. And the definition of “public accommodations” invites trouble. It could include any place outside of private homes -- public sidewalks and streets, “common halls of buildings” (any buildings), and even churches and schools. While “public accommodations” are named in some detail, the statute (Ch. 272, Sec. 92A) does not limit them to the specific named places:

A place of public accommodation, resort or amusement within the meaning hereof shall be defined as and shall be deemed to include any place, whether licensed or unlicensed, which is open to and accepts or solicits the patronage of the general public and, without limiting the generality of this definition, whether or not it be ... [lists types of places; emphasis added]

Private homes may be the only places in Massachusetts where one will be able to object to transgenderism if H1722 is passed.

Further, “gender identity or expression” would be declared a “civil right” through the public accommodations statute, if H1722 is passed. This fact is buried in a referenced statute, Ch. 272, Sec. 98: 

All persons shall have the right to the full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities and privileges of any place of public accommodation, resort or amusement subject only to the conditions and limitations established by law and applicable to all persons. This right is recognized and declared to be a civil right. [emphasis added]

Once “gender identity or expression” is embedded in Massachusetts public accommodations law as a “civil right,” our courts would then define this disordered behavior in public a civil right across the board, granting transgender rights in adoptions, marriage (not just same-sex marriage, but “transgender” marriage – whatever that may be), health coverage, etc.

Bottling up public free speech everywhere

Existing Massachusetts law (Sec. 98 of chapter 272) seems to imply that even speaking publicly against the transgender non-discrimination law, much less leading an effort to overturn it, could result in fines &/or imprisonment:

Whoever makes any distinction, discrimination or restriction on account of race, color, religious creed, national origin, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, which shall not include persons whose sexual orientation involves minor children as the sex object, deafness, blindness or any physical or mental disability or ancestry relative to the admission of any person to, or his treatment in any place of public accommodation, resort or amusement, as defined in section ninety-twoA, or whoever aids or incites such distinction, discrimination or restriction shall be punished by a fine of not more than twenty-five hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than one year, or both, and shall be liable to any person aggrieved thereby for such damages … [emphasis added]

This is about banning free speech and freedom of religious expression about sexual orientations, transgenderism, and the expected explosion of public sexual behaviors. Section 24 of H1722 would even ban establishments from allowing any notice to be posted or circulated …

intended to discriminate against or actually discriminating against persons of any …sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation… [emphasis added]

Is any attempt by people to preserve traditional religious and moral values in this area an “intention to discriminate”? All discussion of homosexuality, transgenderism, transsexuality (or their “expression” in “marriage”) outside of a private home could be cut off if H1722 is passed. No public forums. No debates. No sidewalk signature collections on citizens’ petitions to overturn the new law. No individual, organization, church or public building could allow any posting (including a public library or notice board in a café or supermarket) announcing a class or discussion group (of like-minded people!) on preserving traditional values and gender roles -- even a flyer promoting the Boy Scouts, which could be construed as discriminatory since the group ascribes to traditional masculine (binary gender) values. (But would the courts consider it discriminatory if a transgender group put up a notice, and a heterosexual found it discriminatory?)

GLBT activists have made it perfectly clear already that any expression of disapproval for their behaviors, or any advocacy for traditional values, is considered “homophobic” (soon we’ll hear “transphobic”) and therefore unallowable “hate speech.” A pertinent case was just decided in the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court in California, where Christian employees of the City of Oakland lost their jobs because they posted a flyer for a Christian study group promoting traditional, “natural family” values.  

Hospitals and "required" sex-change surgery

Will public accommodations come to include schools, churches and religious institutions? Most churches, after all, advertise and welcome the general public! And what about hospitals, specifically named as a public accommodation in the statute? Recently in California, a man wanting breast augmentation surgery sued a Catholic hospital for refusing to allow it there. No Catholic hospital in Massachusetts would have a prayer to ban such “sex-change” surgery if H1722 is passed.

This male-to-female transsexual recently sued a Catholic hospital in California for refusing his breast augmentation surgery. H1722 would require Catholic hospitals in Massachusetts to perform such surgeries. There is no exemption for religious institutions or businesses.

In the past few years, we saw former Governor Romney allow homosexual demands to overtake our supposed freedom of religion: First, Catholic Charities’ ban on adoptions by same-sex couples was disallowed (though there was not even a law requiring this, just administrative regulations!). Then, Romney’s Dept. of Public Health forced Catholic hospitals to dispense morning-after pills. In both of those cases, even former Governor Dukakis said there were no laws requiring those policies. So, given that hospitals are specifically named in the existing public accommodations law, this new situation would be even more cut and dried.

Whips, chains, and public accommodations

A hotel or convention site will not be allowed to turn down a transgender/cross-dresser or BDSM (whips & chains, sadomasochism) convention. A restaurant will not be able to turn away a special party for she-male prostitutes and their clients, or cross-dressers. A museum or library will not be allowed to turn away a GLBT activist seminar promoting BDSM, public nudity, public sex, or legalized prostitution. A function facility will not be allowed to refuse a seminar on breast removal and hormone treatments for women “transitioning” to men. A Catholic church could even be forced to hold a forum on homosexual or transsexual “marriage” or polygamy. These behaviors and activities could all be considered “gender expression” and these venues are could all be considered “public accommodations.”
 
In Danvers, Massachusetts in January 2007, the Sheraton Hotel hosted the New England Leather Alliance convention (for people who torture their partner to “express” themselves). Perhaps the hotel feared they’d be taken to court for discrimination against “sexual orientation” if they refused the group? H1722 would ensure that no hotel could refuse such a group.

The New England Leather Alliance held conferences at the Sheraton Danvers in 2007, and at the Boston Park Plaza Hotel in 2004. Even then, the public accommodations law ban on discriminating on the basis of “sexual orientation” led hotels to accept this group. NELA is a close ally with PFLAG (Parents Families & Friends of Lesbians & Gays, very active in our schools) and transgender activists. NELA is “dedicated to making a safe place in the world for all leather/fetish/sm [sadomasochist] people.”

This bill will bring fines and imprisonment if a “public accommodation” allows anything to be posted which could be considered discriminatory against “gender identity or expression.” Or, if one’s “treatment” of someone may be considered discriminatory. After all, it’s the transgender individual who decides what his or her “identity” or “expression” should be, not the other party, and whether his or her “treatment” was fair. If the other party doesn’t play the game right in the way he addresses the transgender person (Sir, or Madame, or Miss?), which pronouns he uses (he or she?), how he looks at him or her, and even if he’s observed by John/Julie (according to John/Julie’s perception) to be uneasy in any way. Section 26 of H1722 says:

“Whoever makes any distinction, discrimination or restriction on account of … sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation … relative to the admission of any person to, or his treatment in any place of public accommodation, resort or amusement, as defined in section ninety-two A, or whoever aids or incites such distinction, discrimination or restriction, shall be punished by a fine … or by imprisonment … and shall be liable to any person aggrieved thereby for such damages …” [emphasis added]

This is about a family not being able to complain when they are forced to share a hotel elevator with a “dominatrix” and her client. (Ch. 272, Sec. 92A specifically names elevators as a public accommodation where one may not discriminate.) This very scenario occurred recently in a prominent Boston hotel.

The New England Leather Alliance had rented space at Boston’s Park Plaza Hotel in January 2004 for their “Fetish Fair Flea Market.” A unknowing older gentleman, in town for a christening at a nearby church, got into an elevator with his wife and little granddaughter and was forced to ride with scantily clothed fair attendees (complete with BDSM accoutrements). He complained to the hotel management, but to no avail. If Bill H1722 is passed, not only could hotels not ban such groups or their lewd public behavior, but a complainer such as the grandfather could be subject to a fine of $2,500, a year in prison, plus damages of an undesignated amount for discriminating against this newly protected class of victims for “inciting” or “instigating” discrimination in a public accommodation. At Boston's Park Plaza Hotel in January 2004:

As the elevator door opened, in walked a woman in a leather bustier leading, by a dog leash and collar, a man wearing nothing but a string thong. …"She's not a small woman," [the offended guest] said. "She's overflowing out of this thing, and she has fishnets on.” … the Fetish Fair Fleamarket was being held in the upstairs ballroom all weekend… [and] a bored-looking manager explained to [the offended guest] that the Park Plaza was a convention hotel and, as such, refused to discriminate against any group…. the lobby was literally filled with hulking cross-dressers gallivanting about in skirts, men in leather chaps and little else, obese people with whips, and dwarfs in masks -- all of them ready to celebrate…. attendees could visit vendors such as Dungeonware and Happy Tails or take classes such as The Joy of Canes and Flogging 101…. [The event organizer] said of her group: "If people are in their rooms having a lot of sex, they're not getting drunk and running down the hallways." 
“They had reservations,” Brian McGrory, Boston Globe, 1-20-04

Right: they’re in their rooms … except for when they’re using the hotel elevators, lobby, hotel restaurants and bar, moving between guest rooms from partner to partner, or using the sidewalks outside – wearing only a string thong.

Restrooms, locker rooms, health clubs

If H1722 is passed, public restrooms in any “public accommodation” (including privately owned businesses, hotels, restaurants, gas stations, retail establishments, even health club locker rooms, etc.) would be used by members of the opposite sex who "identify" as the gender labeled on the restroom door, though their private parts tell otherwise. It’s the transgender individual who gets to decide which restroom he or she will use. Section 25 of H1722 specifically says persons will be allowed

… the full enjoyment of the accommodations consistent with an individual’s gender identity or expression. [emphasis added]

Single-sex health clubs are actually singled out (Section 25) as having to admit transgenders (i.e., a “male-to-female” to a female club, and vice versa). In August 2006, Bay Windows (GLBT Boston newspaper) reported on a male-to-female filing a lawsuit against the Bally Fitness Center in Worcester, which denied him access to its women’s locker room. He was told to use the daycare bathroom or the men’s room, and he was incensed.

Health club harasses transwoman ; Told to use either daycare bathroom for children or men’s room (from Bay Windows, 8-17-06)

Natasha Lee West, a transgender woman, was a member of the Bally Total Fitness club in Worcester for one year in what she calls “male mode”  before deciding to take the step to present herself as female at the gym last June. For the past three years she has lived as female everywhere except for on the job and at the gym, but after finalizing her name change, getting breast implants [but no mention of penis removal] and getting a new driver’s license with her female name and photo, she decided the time was right to live as female full time. West said when she first told the management at the gym in June that she was going to be living full time as female, manager Dale Stoddard seemed supportive. She showed Stoddard the document approving her name change from her birth name to Natasha as well as her new license. “I presented this information to them and they didn’t seem to have a problem with it,” said West…. [emphasis added]

Male-to-Female transsexual  “Natasha Lee West” wants to use the women’s locker room at a Worcester health club. West is also treasurer of the Transgender American Veterans Association Mass. Chapter (TAVAUSA) (photo on left: Bay Windows) (photo on right: TAVAUSA).

If H1722 passes, transgenders and transsexuals (and “bi-genders”) will have guaranteed access to the facilities of the sex they choose … on any particular day. In all buildings or restroom facilities everywhere in Massachusetts. Including schools!

There will also be demands for gender-neutral single-person restrooms in all publicly accessible places, already the rage at colleges across the country -- a very expensive add-on.  "Peeing in Peace" is, in fact, the title of a major resource of trans activists listed on the MTPC web site. MTPC recently held a seminar locally called "Toilet Training". News stories indicate that this solution (single-person restrooms) may also be considered “discriminatory” by the transgender person.

Recently in Lawrence, Massachusetts, a female physical education major at Northern Essex Community College, who had her breasts removed but “still had some female anatomy,” demanded to use the male locker room, but was told she must use the women’s locker room. She charged the college with discrimination. The Boston Globe, which complied with the AP style guidelines and called this young woman “he” (because that’s how she wants to “express her gender identity”), reported:

Ethan Santiago, a physical education major in his first semester at Northern Essex Community College, had been using the men's locker room for weeks when he decided he needed a spot to stash his gym bag. So, he applied for a locker. He said a school administrator denied his request, citing safety reasons. Santiago, a transgendered student, still has some female anatomy. The rejection spurred the 20-year-old to file an affirmative action grievance against the school in October, alleging that he was discriminated against because of his gender identity. Santiago said he just wants to be treated like other male students on campus. Instead, he said, the college offered him the use of a locker room generally reserved for athletes from visiting schools, as well as use of a handicap-accessible bathroom near the NECC men's locker room. He said both options made him feel like a second-class citizen.

"Let's put you where people won't see you, where people won't find out . . . like I'm some kind of dirty little secret," Santiago said, describing administrators' reaction to his gender identity. "I'm not in the closet. I'm not afraid." … Santiago, who has since cut his hair and dresses in men's clothes and has had breast reduction surgery. …[T]ransgender advocates say it seems as if Northern Essex is behind the times.

At least 18 higher educational institutions in Massachusetts have nondiscrimination policies that include gender identity and expression, including Harvard, MIT, Tufts, and Salem State, according to the Transgender Law & Policy Institute, based in Brooklyn. Emerson College and Tufts University also have gender-neutral bathrooms. And the University of Massachusetts at Amherst has gender-neutral housing where students may have a roommate of either gender….

"A transgender man is a man," [Shannon] Minter [Legal Director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights] said. "He may have a different body in some respects, but his gender identity, which is the real aspect of human existence, is male."

Meanwhile, Santiago said, he'll continue his fight at Northern Essex. He's been in contact with the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition, a nonprofit that has offered to help guide his next steps. [emphasis added]

"Student alleges bias over locker" Boston Globe (1-13-2008)

So does a man who dresses as a woman have the right to use the ladies' room? If Bill H1722 is passed, yes. That's because if he "identifies" as a woman, he is a woman (according to transgender advocates). Therefore, it's not a man using the ladies' room. It's a woman, even if there's a male organ. So no one has any grounds for complaint. And if you (or the management of the building in question) do complain (once this bill passes), you'll be guilty of unlawful “treatment” discrimination. Ditto a female "identifying" as a male. If she wants to use the men's room, that's fine, because she is a man... according to her/"him". That's all that matters: how that individual "identifies" or "expresses" him/herself.  Mass. Transgender Political Coalition's Talking Points for high schools and colleges is a masterpiece of Orwellian doublespeak, offering this explanation of their restroom demands:

Does this mean that women will have to share bathrooms with men, and vice versa?

This policy will prevent requiring people to use bathrooms that do not correspond to their gender identity. It will not mean that women will have to share bathrooms with men. All people must have access to safe and dignified bathroom facilities, regardless of their gender identity or expression.

  • The City of Boston ordinance addresses restrooms and other such facilities separated by sex by allowing individuals to use bathroom facilities based on the gender identity that they “publicly and exclusively assert or express.” This language prevents employers and proprietors of public accommodations from requiring people to use bathrooms that do not correspond to their gender identity. It does not mean that men will be sharing bathrooms with women, or vice versa. Rather, the ordinance prevents the obvious disruptions that arise when people are required to use bathrooms inappropriate to their gender identity. Transgender people whom [sic] publicly and exclusively assert and express themselves as women belong in, and have the right to use, the women’s restroom. Transgender people who publicly and exclusively assert and express themselves as men belong in, and have the right to use, the men’s restroom.

    Allowing individuals to use the restroom that corresponds with the gender identity that they “publicly and exclusively assert or express” makes sense. There is simply no legitimate way to do “anatomy checks” or “chromosomal checks” before determining who can use what restroom. Nothing in this ordinance alters an individual’s reasonable privacy and safety expectations in restrooms. Legitimate safety concerns, of course, need to be addressed regardless of whom [sic] poses them. If a customer or patron complains, treat each party with respect and discretion.

    Notably, in all of the other jurisdictions that have passed similar ordinances, there has not been a single reported case of men in the women’s room. All people must have access to safe and dignified bathroom facilities, regardless of their gender identity or expression. Proprietors of public accommodations have an obligation to make restroom facilities safe for all people. However, we cannot let legitimate safety concerns become a proxy for bias and prejudice.

  • What the policy will do is prevent the obvious disruptions and problems that arise when people are required to use bathrooms inappropriate to their gender identity, (for example, when transgender women [i.e., men dressing as women] are forced to share bathrooms with men, or transgender men [i.e., women dressing as men] are forced to share bathrooms with women). This policy simply will allow individuals to use bathroom facilities based on the gender identity that they "publicly and exclusively assert or express." By adding this language, this policy will help resolve awkward bathroom situations, not create them.
College dorms and beyond

College dormitories will not be able to prevent a "transmale" (a biological female claiming she is "male") from marking "male" on all her identifying documents, and therefore being placed in a male dormitory room. (H1722’s lead sponsor, Rep. Carl Sciortino, was a college activist pushing for this very policy at Tufts University.) Colleges and even secondary boarding schools will have to provide “gender blind” dorm rooms, as is already the case at U. Mass. Amherst. Harvard Business School is already showing the way on its application for admission, giving the options for sex as “Male; Female; Transgender.”   Will other schools, companies, and institutions be sued under the new law for discrimination if they don’t give this third option on applications, and in dormitories? (Will traditional-thinking attendees be able to mark “no transgender roommate” on their applications?)

HGLC Home Logo

Harvard University’s Gay and Lesbian Caucus is also pushing transgender demands on campus. Will Massachusetts law soon force the university to comply with every idea they try out? The Harvard Business School already allows applicants to check off “transgender” instead of “male” or “female.”

Organizing, Serving, and Defending the Harvard Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Community

Public accommodations will come to include such private institutions as colleges and private schools, whether religiously-affiliated or not. They are open to the general public in the sense that anyone can apply for admission, or for employment. Even a VFW or Rotary Club seems to fit the bill. Here’s the list – remember that this is not meant to be limiting – of the public accommodations that would be overtaken by transgender madness (Ch. 272, Sec. 92A):

A place of public accommodation, resort or amusement within the meaning hereof shall be defined as and shall be deemed to include any place, whether licensed or unlicensed, which is open to and accepts or solicits the patronage of the general public and, without limiting the generality of this definition, whether or not it be (1) an inn, tavern, hotel, shelter, roadhouse, motel, trailer camp or resort for transient or permanent guests or patrons seeking housing or lodging, food, drink, entertainment, health, recreation or rest; (2) a carrier, conveyance or elevator for the transportation of persons, whether operated on land, water or in the air, and the stations, terminals and facilities appurtenant thereto; (3) a gas station, garage, retail store or establishment, including those dispensing personal services; (4) a restaurant, bar or eating place, where food, beverages, confections or their derivatives are sold for consumption on or off the premises; (5) a rest room, barber shop, beauty parlor, bathhouse, seashore facilities or swimming pool, except such rest room, bathhouse or seashore facility as may be segregated on the basis of sex; (6) a boardwalk or other public highway; (7) an auditorium, theatre, music hall, meeting place or hall, including the common halls of buildings; (8) a place of public amusement, recreation, sport, exercise or entertainment; (9) a public library, museum or planetarium; or (10) a hospital, dispensary or clinic operating for profit; provided, however, that with regard to the prohibition on sex discrimination, [following passage in current law which would be overturned by H1722, section 25:] this section shall not apply  to a place of exercise for the exclusive use of persons of the same sex which is a bona fide fitness facility established for the sole purpose of promoting and maintaining physical and mental health through physical exercise and instruction . . . [emphasis added]


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