Liberty Counsel Files Amicus Brief Regarding Public School Transgender Bathrooms

Dec 1, 2015

Newport News, VA – Public schools adopting “gender identity” instead of biological sex abandons science, creates a hostile environment, and threatens the safety and well-being of children, Liberty Counsel told the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in an amicus brief

When the Gloucester County School Board in Virginia adopted a policy requiring students to use private restrooms or restrooms designated for their biological sex, a female student, who self-identifies as a boy, sued. 

The Obama Administration’s Department of Education (DOE) insists that school districts like Gloucester County disregard the safety and privacy of all students in order to accommodate a student who is gender-confused. Under the guise of enforcing Title IX, DOE is threatening schools to open bathrooms and locker rooms based on gender identity or lose federal funding. 

Abandons Science   Over 40 studies have established that “sex change” is biologically impossible, and efforts to medically and surgically “re-assign sex” exacerbate a mental disorder. A 1979 investigation at Johns Hopkins revealed that “sex reassignment surgery” did not lessen the psycho-social problems of adults who identified as “transgender,” and the clinic, along with other university-based clinics, stopped performing the surgeries. 

Dr. Richard P. Fitzgibbons wrote in The Psychopathology of “Sex Reassignment” Surgery: Assessing Its Medical, Psychological, and Ethical Appropriateness that no scientific evidence exists to support the conclusion that gender identity disorder is biological in origin. A “baby is conceived genetically male or female. Prenatal brain development is influenced by the same hormones that trigger the development of the reproductive organs,” Fitzgibbons wrote. “The sex of each individual is encoded in the genes—XX if female, XY if male.” 

Creates Hostile Environment   “To satisfy transgender students’ requests to use facilities designated for their gender identity instead of their biological sex will mean that individuals who have male genitalia, but who identify as female, will have to be permitted to use the girls’ restroom or locker room, or, vice versa,” said Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. “While that will purportedly make the school environment less hostile to the gender-confused student, it will make it more hostile to students who are distressed and feel unsafe undressing and using the restroom in the presence of the opposite sex. Students who object will face charges of discrimination or even aggression,” Staver pointed out. 

Threatens Children’s Well-being   Evidence shows that children are put at risk when schools encourage them to identify themselves as “gay” or “transgender” at an early age. In fact, for each year children delay labeling themselves as “LGBT,” their suicide risk is reduced by 20 percent. Up to 94 percent of children who identify as “transgender” in adolescence grow out of their desire to change genders if they are not pressured by society to undergo treatment. 

Psychiatrist Dr. Keith Ablow has discussed the potentially traumatic consequences of instructing children to deny biological reality: “The mere fact that teachers and administrators will have to explain to kindergarten and first grade students that they might see girls in the boys’ restroom, or boys in the girls’ locker room, but that those really aren’t kids of the gender they appear to be, could do harm to their own developing sense of self by suggesting to them that their gender is fluid, that it well might change for them, too, and that they should be on the lookout for signs that they want to switch.” 

“The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals should uphold Gloucester’s policy of restricting bathroom access to biological sex,” said Staver. “The regulation might not be politically popular with those who want to overthrow millennia of social norms and morals, but it complies with Title IX and protects the health, safety, and rights of privacy for all students in the district,” concluded Staver. 

Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit, litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics.