The city of Royal Oak, Michigan was on track to become the 22nd city in the state to establish LGBT nondiscrimination protections, but that measure is now being challenged at the ballot through a citywide referendum. State House Rep. Tom McMillin (R) issued a news release explaining why he thinks the protections would “violate the privacy rights of women and children”:
MCMILLIN: Why the city would want to force places like schools, businesses and fitness centers to allow men to use a women’s restroom or locker room – and allow boys to access girl’s restrooms and locker rooms in schools, is beyond me.
It certainly violates the privacy rights of women and children. At the very least, the council should have also included a requirement for warning signs on women’s and girl’s public restroom and locker room doors saying that women and girls may be confronted there by men who think they are women.
Like Arizona state Rep. John Kavanagh (R), McMillin seems to be afraid that women and children might see a transgender woman’s penis. But transgender women are not “men who think they are women,” they are women. They are not predators, nor does anybody need to be warned that they might be in the same space. Indeed, McMillin seems to have little concern for transgender people’s same right to privacy or for their basic dignity and safety to use a gender-appropriate facility.
McMillin’s statement also claimed that requiring Christians not to discriminate against LGBT people is tantamount to “bullying”:
MCMILLIN: The discrimination and coercion this ordinance supports — that a Christian photographer or baker must, if asked, offer their services to a so-called ‘gay wedding’ or face a $500 per day fine is wrong… Bullying Christians is wrong, too.
Tom McMillin has previously said that homosexuality is a “lifestyle” and a “choice” that people have “come out of.” In 2011, he proposed a bill to ban any Michigan municipality from extending LGBT nondiscrimination protections.