June 29, 2022 The Newspaper Serving LGBT Los Angeles

Anti-Trans Liberty Counsel: Bring Your Gun to Pee

Anita Staver has a gun for transgender people.
Anita Staver has a gun for transgender people.

BY KAREN OCAMB | The White House deplored the murder of Xulhaz Mannan, editor of Bangladesh’s first LGBT magazine, who was hacked to death with his friend on Monday while much of LGBT America focused on North Carolina as protesters pressured the Legislature to repeal the anti-trans “bathroom bill”http://www.hrc.org/blog/hundreds-of-thousands-call-for-repeal-of-north-carolina-anti-lgbt-law-as-le that has cost the state millions in lost revenue.

But it was Anita Staver’s response to Target’s gender-neutral bathroom policy that shot shivers through the Twitterverse.

Target’s pro-equality stance has generated more than 500,000 pledges to join a conservative-Christian boycott the company, perhaps as a “religious liberty” effort to counter the powerful response from businesses and the entertainment community to shun North Carolina as a result of their recent anti-LGBT law.

Orlando, Florida-based Liberty Counsel Founder and Chair Mat Staver and his wife Anita, Counsel President, are the primary forces behind the “bathroom bills,” which have succeeded in Republican-led legislatures after twice dramatically failing in California.

Perhaps most remember Staver as the defender of Kentucky clerk Kim Davis who refused to sign and certify same sex marriage licenses in defiance of the Supreme Court. Staver told CBS News last week that the religious liberty laws are only intended to “protect those who cite religious beliefs for refusing to serve or employ gay or transgender people” in at least 20 states.

“It is only about being free to pursue your faith,” Staver said. “We have no interest in discriminating against anyone.”

But what’s wrong with a little intimidation? On Monday, Anita Staver (pictured above in a photo from her Facebook page) did more than encourage a little pledge-signing or hugging a bigot: she called for women to bring guns into the bathroom to protect themselves from men pretending to be women in order to attack women and girls. It doesn’t matter that there have been NO recorded instances of such criminal behavior. Fear is a potent weapon in the ongoing culture wars that LGBT-haters can’t bear losing.

Anita Staver's threatening Tweet


And when others complained that Anita Staver was encouraging violence, they were met with demeaning sexism.


A


Here are statements from Equality Florida and TransAction, the two groups most involved with the LGBT community in Florida – groups that worry about murder too easily being visited upon LGBT people in their state as it is worldwide:

Statement by Nadine Smith, Executive Director of Equality Florida
“The president of Liberty Counsel, the religious law group behind the recent wave of anti-transgender bathroom bills, announced that she plans to carry a gun with her to the women’s restroom.
Anita Staver’s twitter message comes in response to an announcement by Target that the company will not discriminate against transgender customers or employees.

Liberty Counsel’s tweet advising people to bring firearms into bathrooms is outrageous, dangerous, and irresponsible. The type of fear-mongering promoted by this hate group is not only reprehensible, but it is putting lives in danger.

I have contacted Liberty Counsel directly and hope they will accept the invitation to meet with Equality Florida and sit down with members of the transgender community to see the people who suffer most directly the consequences of their dangerous and dehumanizing rhetoric.

Fortunately, this type of appeal to fear is being broadly denounced. Conservative commentators, law enforcement officials and those on the frontline combating violence have called this misguided and dangerous; a draconian solution to a non-existent problem.

We hope Liberty Counsel will back away from this reckless strategy and stop inciting hostility toward transgender people.”

Statement from Equality Florida’s Transgender Inclusion Director Gina Duncan:
“TransAction Florida, Equality Florida’s Transgender Rights Division is both outraged and alarmed by the recent tweet by Anita Staver, President of The Liberty Counsel, a hate group dedicated to discrimination against the LGBT community. Her tweet clearly advocates violence against an already vulnerable community. The transgender bathroom issue has been debunked time and again. It is an inflammatory issue designed to mobilize hate and misinformation about the transgender community. National and state studies consistently show that there have been absolutely no increases in public safety issues where fully inclusive diversity policies have been passed.

In short this is a solution to a manufactured issue in search of a problem that does not exist.
Today’s tweet, however, goes too far and is totally unacceptable. Advocating the need for a hand gun as a “bodyguard” in a bathroom is inflammatory hate-mongering that can truly lead to loss of life for simply using the bathroom.

Equality Florida is taking decisive and immediate steps to stem the tide of this hateful rhetoric and to elevate the truth around bathroom safety issues and transgender rights.

We call on all Floridians to renounce this hateful and unfounded rhetoric and reject any public policy actions designed to further marginalize our transgender community. Our young people are frightened and are looking for us to stand our ground against this vicious attack against the transgender community. We call on the Liberty Counsel to meet with Equality Florida to justify their advocacy of carrying fire arms into public restrooms when there is entirely no justification for doing so.

It is time we move past this politically motivated hate speech designed to denigrate the transgender community. Discrimination wrapped in religion is still discrimination.

Stop the hate speech, stop the lies, stop the violence.”

Related Posts

Santa Monica’s Building Bridges Art Exchange Presents: J.J. Martin’s “Role Models”

June 28, 2022

June 28, 2022

A traveling exhibit in partnership with Indianilla Cultural Center, Mexico City and Real de Catorce Cultural Center, Real de Catorce,...

Los Angeles Frenchie Reaches Record Age Milestone for Its Breed, Surpassing Recent Life Expectancy Report by Three Fold

June 23, 2022

June 23, 2022

Learn about Rocco the French bulldog  By Susan Payne Native to Brazil, Rocco the French bulldog has reached an age...

44 Years Later, MLB’s First Openly Gay Player Glenn Burke Now Celebrated by Dodgers

June 23, 2022

June 23, 2022

Glenn Burke celebrated at Dodgers Pride night By Susan Payne The Los Angeles Dodgers’ ninth annual LGBTQ+ Pride Night celebrated...

The Book Jewel Celebrates Pride Month as a Community

June 22, 2022

June 22, 2022

Westchester bookstore hosting series of events this month The Book Jewel in Westchester is hosting several events this month that...

A Staple Tamales Vendor’s Truck Was Stolen. Friends of the Vendor Are Asking for LGBTQ+ Support to Bring Back Her Only Source of Income

June 17, 2022

June 17, 2022

By Susan Payne For nearly 16 years, a 52-year-old single mother of two has been serving the Los Angeles LGBTQ+...

LGBT Center Welcomes Incoming CEO Joe Hollendoner

June 17, 2022

June 17, 2022

By Susan Payne In an in-person sustaining donor event last November, longtime Chief Executive Officer Lorri L. Jean for the...

Culver City Pride Ride and Rally Around the Corner

June 14, 2022

June 14, 2022

Sunday, June 26, 2022, 9 AM Pride Ride | 11 AM Rally Culver City’s second ever Pride celebration is set...

Police: Catholic High School Football Players Sexually Assault New Student

June 10, 2022

June 10, 2022

By Susan Payne Months of controversy over an alleged hazing scandal at a private high school in Santa Ana have...

Media Matters: Anti-Trans Violence Increases as TV News Coverage Drops 20%

June 10, 2022

June 10, 2022

By Susan Payne A report released by Media Matters’ LGBTQ Program found that national cable and corporate broadcast TV networks...

Oil Can Harry’s Named Historic-Cultural Monument

June 10, 2022

June 10, 2022

By Susan Payne For its historic and social significance to San Fernando Valley and the LGBTQ+ community, Oil Can Harry’s...

Music of Queen Preformed by the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles at Fairmont Century Plaza

June 7, 2022

June 7, 2022

Free event June 18th at 7p.m. To celebrate PRIDE the Fairmont Century Plaza located will host an incredible performance by...

SaMo PRIDE Returns!

June 3, 2022

June 3, 2022

Month-long Pride celebration brings together community, families and LGBTQIA+ supporters of all ages SaMo PRIDE has returned! The city-wide celebration...

Rainbow on Royce Hall for Pride 2022

June 2, 2022

June 2, 2022

To mark the beginning of Pride Month on June 1, UCLA lit up one of its iconic buildings to acknowledge...

Pride Is Here. Here’s What You Can Expect in West Hollywood, Santa Monica, Los Angeles and Long Beach

June 2, 2022

June 2, 2022

By Susan Payne West Hollywood Pride: With Liberty, Diversity, Inclusion and Progress for All As California enters Pride month, WeHo...