In support of a bill that bars students from using bathrooms, showers and locker rooms corresponding with their gender identity, South Dakota state senator David Omdahl stated during a legislative coffee event last Saturday, that transgender people are “twisted” and need psychological help, Argus Leader reported.
“This is about protecting our children. I’m sorry if you’re so twisted you don’t know who you are, a lot of people are”, Omdahl stated.
After that the audience gasped audibly and was told by the moderator to quiet down.
“Theyre treating the wrong part of the anatomy”, Omdahl continued. they ought to be treated up here (points to head). So let’s get this bill passed to save our kids”.
Representative Steve Haugaard, R-Sioux Falls, called transgender identity a “choice of lifestyle” and said society has been too concerned about the “epidemic” of arguments coming out in favor of the self-identity.
“For us to perpetuate confusion in the lives of anyone is a disservice to them”
Kendra Heathscott, a transgender woman and member of the Center for Equality commented to local tv station KSFY that statements like this are ignorant:
“We know for a fact that transgender people, it’s not a mental illness, if that, they may be struggling with depression because of comments that are made like that. I think that the comment the legislators made this morning just promotes more bullying, it promotes more misinformation. It doesn’t teach people the correct things and how trans people want to identified, and how they want to be talked about and how they want to be discussed,”
Civil liberties advocates have called the bill “discriminatory” and launched social media campaigns asking lawmakers not to be “potty police.” The bill passed in the House on a 58-10 vote and is set to come up for debate in the Senate.