WASHINGTON, May 14, 2016 – The latest edict by the Obama Administration concerning transgender restrooms is again causing Americans to wonder who exactly holds the authority to rewrite or redefine laws. In this case, the question surrounds the definition of Title IX of the Civil Rights Act.
On May 13, 2016, the US Department of Education and the US Department of Justice sent a letter to every school district in the United States. The missive insisted on an interpretation of Title IX of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which seems contradictory to the original content.
The Act originally stated, “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.”
This piece of legislation made it illegal to discriminate against African Americans and women. It also established an end to unequal applications of voter registration requirements and racial segregation in schools, places of employment, and facilities that served the general public, such as diners and restaurants.
Title IX also covered all educational activities and complaints of sex discrimination in areas such as science or math education or in other aspects of academic life. The legislation was signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson who, in 1967, issued a series of executive orders and made clarifications concerning the law. One of these was Executive Order 11375, which stipulated that all entities receiving federal contracts end discrimination on the basis of sex in hiring and employment.
The word “sex” was included in the act as in reference to women and their protection and/or right to equality. Nowhere does it reference additional gender groups.
In their “Dear Colleague” letter, Catherine E. Lhamon of the U.S. Department of Education and Vanita Gupta of the U.S. Department of Justice not only attempt to reconstruct a system that has proven effective in education, but also decree that schools impose on the privacy and protection of students of all ages.
As reported by Fox News Correspondent Leland Vitter, schools ranging from elementary levels through colleges and universities are being ordered to allow all transgender students access to use whatever restroom or locker room pertains to the gender identity they have chosen. Even though this is not a law, the schools choosing to ignore these orders face the possibility of losing their federal funding.
Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick has spoken out against the “Dear Colleague” letter, saying that Texas will not succumb to what he defines as political blackmail. Patrick also stated that 80 percent of the federal funding Texas receives goes to free school meals, so the loss of funding would result in the government taking food from poor children.
In a poll asking whether schools should lose their federal funding for not following the stated demands, 9.73 percent answered yes while 90.27 percent of respondents said no.
With only 0.3 percent of the general populace identifying themselves as transgender, the chaos being invoked by demanding these changes be followed and adhered to seems pointless.
Just as anger and concern accompanied the decision legalizing gay marriage in all states, the concern is more intense when it comes to allowing biological males into a girls restroom and locker room in elementary and secondary schools.
The key issue is other students’ right to privacy. Public anger is being directed at laws being altered not only by federal circumvention of local government protocol, but by the very fact that local and state laws are being thrown out, replaced by rules made by unelected federal bureaucrats and directed and enforced by those who do not possess the authority to do so.
The Constitution seems to be a fading memory for President Obama. The 9th Amendment states that there are other constitutional rights that may exist in addition to those specifically mentioned, stating further that even though they are not listed, that does not mean they can be violated. For its part, the 10th Amendment speaks to the principle of federalism, stating that the, “federal government possesses only those powers delegated to it by the U. S. Constitution. All remaining powers are reserved for the states or the people.”
Questions continue to surface on this issue, such as:
- Who has the authority to redefine or rewrite legislature that was signed into law 52 years ago?
- Who holds the power to demand the right to privacy be removed and replaced with a more politically correct agenda?
- Who has been given the freedom to dictate how people will change their lives to facilitate those who choose to be different?
When these issues continue to have a negative impact on the freedom and the very lives of average Americans, does it not give proof of government tyranny? Does it not go against everything the Constitution grants American citizens? How can this baseless flaunting of the Constitution continue without destroying the integrity of a great nation whose society was once based on commonly shared morals and values?
People are demanding answers, and rightly so.