Republican lawmakers in Virginia seem intent on one-upping Indiana in their quest to publicly shame trans people. Earlier this week, lawmakers in the Hoosier State introduced a bill that would fine transgender adults $5000 for using public restrooms. Now, lawmakers in Virginia want to create a similar law that applies to trans children. House Bill 663 was filed with the Virginia state legislature earlier this week by Republican Del. Mark Cole. The bill seeks to prohibit elementary and high school students who identify as trans from using the restrooms or locker rooms that don’t match their “anatomical sex.”
According to the bill, a student’s “anatomical sex” is “the physical condition of being male or female, which is determined by a person’s anatomy.” The measure states that “local school boards shall develop and implement policies that require every school restroom, locker room, or shower room that is designated for use by a specific gender to solely be used by individuals whose anatomical sex matches such gender designation.”
If a student is caught violating the law, he or she will be fined $50. So how exactly will schools enforce this proposed law?
According to LGBTQ rights activist Tim Peacock, “adults would be required to inspect children’s genitals before they use the bathroom.”
“This is what the conservative movement has devolved into,” Peacock wrote in a blog post published Tuesday, “forcing children to allow adults to examine their genitals out of misplaced fear that transgender kids and adults might commit a hypothetical never-before-seen act of violence or sexual aggression (that would still be against the law with or without transgender protections).”
In response to Peacock’s post, Del. Mark Cole took to Twitter to clarify that his bill doesn’t call for adults to examine children’s genitals. Instead, he says, the law would be enforced on a “complaint basis.”
“A woman would report a man using the facility and a summons could be issued if warranted,” Cole tweeted. Of course, this raises a question: How would the courts verify the anatomy of the accused?