Opinion: Gavin Grimm case to set important precedent

Bobbie Szabo

Bobbie Szabo

The rights of transgender students to use the bathroom corresponding to their gender is not a states’ rights issue — it is an equal rights issue, and no one should frame it differently.

The United States’ current presidential administration has announced plans to rescind guidelines administered by the Obama administration under the guise of protecting states’ rights. According to our current president, discrimination against individuals based on gender identity is completely legal and appropriate, as long as the states are in control.

Earlier in the year, our Republican president tweeted the following: “Thank you to the LGBT community! I will fight for you …, ” but his most recent decisions prove he cannot and will not keep that promise.

Despite the presidential push toward inequality, the rights of transgender individuals to pee in the correct bathroom will be decided by the Supreme Court. Gavin Grimm, a student from a Virginia school who was segregated for being transgender by his local school board, is the plaintiff, and he is being represented by the American Civil Liberties Union.

The Supreme Court’s decision on this case is going to establish a precedent — a strong precedent either in favor of LGBT rights or against equality. It will create a tone of acceptance or a tone of condemnation. Grimm has been compared to Obergefell, McCorvey and other landmark Supreme Court case plaintiffs.

To put it simply, G.G. v. Gloucester County School Board is important.

It might be delayed until a new justice is appointed and confirmed. Yet, equality cannot and should not be delayed.

Ultimately, the issue is not bathrooms. The issue is not states’ rights. The issue is not schools.

The issue is discrimination. Transgender individuals have a right to be safe, and we must do all we can to ensure that safety — especially in supposedly safe places like schools.

Bobbie Szabo is a columnist, contact her at [email protected]