And this is why the haters are going to lose.
They're winning battles right now (North Carolina, Mississippi), just like they won battles during fight for marriage equality (the 11 state constitutional amendments banning same sex marriage that passed in 2004). But the fight they've picked this time—where trans people pee—is forcing a huge political and cultural conversation about who trans people are. (It's also forcing a conversation about who really threatens the safety of women and girls in public toilets. Spoiler: it's cisgendered men, not trans women.) This conversation will result in people hearing not just about trans people—and not just about them from haters and demagogues—but from trans people and their allies and their lawyers.
The same thing happened during the fight for marriage equality: haters wanted to have a one-side, demagogues-only "conversation" about how same-sex couples wanted to destroy the institution of marriage, destroy the family, destroy the country—prominent haters even ran around arguing that allowing same-sex couples to file joint tax returns would lead to the extinction of the human race.
Those ridiculous lies won 'em some battles—they carried the day before the Washington State Supreme Court—but they didn't win 'em the war. Because their lies couldn't survive us. They couldn't survive us getting out there and speaking for ourselves, they couldn't survive the scrutiny of decent and reasonable people, they couldn't survive our lawyers, and they couldn't survive satire and ridicule. A million mocking stories were written after the Dowager Pope argued same-sex marriage threatened the "future of humanity itself." My contribution was posted to YouTube by a rightwing nutjob who didn't realize he was helping the marriage equality side:
That rightwing nutjob posted that on YouTube thinking it made me look bad.
The haters are winning some battles right now, and that sucks, and their hateful rhetoric makes an already dangerous world for trans people even more dangerous. But their "wins" are putting trans people in the spotlight. Trans people are speaking for themselves, disproving the lies, and joining in or leading the joyful mocking of the haters—just as the fight against same-sex marriage put same-sex couples (some half or wholly trans) in the spotlight. We spoke for ourselves, we mocked the haters, we gathered supporters, and we won the war.
I'm not arguing for complacency—we won the fight for marriage equality because we got out there and fucking fought it. We're gonna have to fight this fight too. And we are fighting it and we are going to win.
We are winning.
UPDATE: Have the convo, win the war...
This study is a big deal for trans rights and suggests we shouldn't be so pessimistic about changing ppl's mindshttps://t.co/3DPjyRH9KL— Jesse Singal (@jessesingal) April 7, 2016