S.D. Conservative Pushes For ‘Mandatory Genital Examinations’ For Trans Teens To Play Sports

Last year, the South Dakota High School Activities Association changed its policies to be inclusive of trans teen athletes. This year, South Dakota conservative legislator Roger Hunt put forth legislation stipulating mandatory genital examinations for trans teens wishing to play sports. Before they can play, someone has to get a look at their goods so they can tell them where to shower and take a piss.

Isn’t that what this is really about? We can’t have these kids potentially glimpsing something as natural as genitals, can we? It’s not like they can just hop online and stare at any kind of genitalia they like for as long as they like or anything. And it’s not as if the simple issue of showers and bathrooms can’t be worked out between civil people who are not knee-jerking at the notion of trans individuals, pretending they’re all out to simply get in with the opposite sex for prurient interests, as Mike Huckabee once said.

The reality is that the issues that seem to worry the conservative puritans so much are an incredibly small aspect of shifting to trans inclusiveness. The issue is making sure trans students feel safe, welcome and part of the community — in this case, local schools. How subjecting them to mandatory genital examinations before playing high school sports is supposed to make them feel safe, welcome and an equal part of the community, is incomprehensible.

The alternative, of course, is subjecting all high school students to mandatory genital examinations. After all, there’s still physical education courses that need to be contended with. But with constant abuse of power and daily sexual abuse cases rampant across the nation, do we really want to open our children up to such a thing? Who would conduct such examinations, and how would parents know their children will be safe? How many students will still want to participate in sports if they have to go through such an awkward, even humiliating process?

And let’s be real, not every trans person is easily identifiable as trans. Many one would never know without becoming close enough to that person for such information to be shared or discovered, which begs the question: On what grounds would one be designated trans and therefore subjected to mandatory genital examination? Would that be for self-identified trans teens, or would the school use some other means for such determination? Certainly looks cannot be enough grounds, though that absurd approach would not be the least bit surprising if a school actually adopted that policy. That’s how bass-ackwards this country is on what should be a no-brainer. You accept and love people for who they are. That’s pretty much all there is to it. It’s a matter of respect, equality and those inalienable rights the powers that be are constantly trying to reframe as “privileges” these days.

Hunt, though, says he “believes” one’s gender “begins at conception” and thinks schools should only use birth certificates and “visual inspections” to determine a student’s gender. So strange. After all, if you have the birth certificate, why do you need “visual inspections”? And if you don’t trust birth certificates, why include them at all? Just go for the visual inspections, then.

Because the birth certificates are just a frail attempt at lending authenticity to this loony plan. It’s just something to make manhandling and ogling your kid’s nether regions seem legit.

Hunt told the Rapid City Journal:

“This is South Dakota. We haven’t adopted the East Coast culture. We haven’t adopted the West Coast culture. We maintain our own culture.”

Da fuq?

What, exactly, is Hunt saying there? What is he implying about East and West Coast culture? And what is he saying about South Dakota’s culture?

ThinkProgress writes:

“The current policy requires that parents notify the school of their child’s gender identity and the school collects information from the family, such as parents, friends and teachers, that the student’s gender identity is different than what is listed on their birth certificate or school registration records and receives written verification from a health care professional who can attest to the child’s consistent gender identification and expression.”

Now that sounds reasonable, much safer, and far, far less invasive. And it covers all the same bases resulting in the same end as Hunt’s concerns, currently soaking his pillow in sweaty anxiety every night. This policy is already in place, too!

After a teen’s gender identification can be determined respectfully and discretely, that teen is then welcome to participate in whatever sport as their preferred gender identity for the duration of the school year. The schools’ policy also proactively helps students learn how to navigate respectfully speaking and interacting with trans teens by offering examples of how and when to use what kinds of pronouns regarding trans classmates. They also lay out ground rules for how locker rooms and bathrooms should be dealt with.

So what’s the concern? What’s the worry? What’s the sense in Hunt taking up South Dakota’s time, money and attention with a non-issue just because he’s uncomfortable with the reality of trans teens in local high schools?

Suck it up, Hunt. Your “mandatory genital inspections” will not change a thing. It will only alienate students and likely lead to several sexual abuse cases. The ramifications of that: families ruined, careers lost, life-long trauma for victims, and perhaps even some suicides.

And why? So Hunt can sleep at night without getting uptight that trans people exist in the world and actually wish to participate in the world?

Hardly seems worth it.

You can read up on other, past attempts to block, change and eradicate trans rights and equality in schools, here.

Featured image via WikiMedia