11 States Just Jumped on the Bathroom Freakout Bandwagon

They’re suing the federal government to block the Obama administration’s transgender rights directive.

<a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/cat.mhtml?lang=en&language=en&ref_site=photo&search_source=search_form&version=llv1&anyorall=all&safesearch=1&use_local_boost=1&autocomplete_id=&searchterm=bathroom%20signs&show_color_wheel=1&orient=&commercial_ok=&media_type=images&search_cat=&searchtermx=&photographer_name=&people_gender=&people_age=&people_ethnicity=&people_number=&color=&page=1&inline=392752957">Studio C </a>/Shutterstock

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Eleven states sued the federal government Wednesday after the Obama administration told public schools to let transgender students use bathrooms corresponding to their gender identity.

“Defendants have conspired to turn workplaces and educational settings across the country into laboratories for a massive social experiment.”

“Defendants have conspired to turn workplaces and educational settings across the country into laboratories for a massive social experiment, flouting the democratic process, and running roughshod over commonsense policies protecting children and basic privacy rights,” argued the plaintiffs in a suit filed in federal court in Texas.

The lawsuit is being brought by the states of Texas, Alabama, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Utah, and Georgia; the governor of Maine; the Arizona Department of Education; and school districts in Texas and Arizona. You can read the full complaint below.

Earlier this month, the federal departments of Justice and Education sent a directive to all public school districts in the country, saying schools could lose federal funding if they blocked transgender kids from using the bathrooms of their choice. The directive, which does not carry the force of law, came after the Justice Department and North Carolina sued each other over North Carolina’s decision to restrict bathroom access in public schools and public buildings according to the sex listed on people’s birth certificates. The Justice Department has threatened to pull federal education funding from North Carolina because of the law, which it says violates federal civil rights laws.

 

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You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

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