A federal court has ruled that a taxpayer-funded school district in Wisconsin must allow a biologically female student who identifies as a transgender male to use the boys’ bathrooms and locker rooms on school grounds.
In what is being hailed as one of the biggest victories for transgender students so far, a unanimous decision by three judges will allow 17-year-old Ash Whitaker to use the male facilities at Tremper High School in Kenosha for the rest of her senior year. There was already a gender-neutral bathroom provided by the school, yet Whitaker and her lawyers insisted that this was not enough, and would attract “negative attention.”
The court ignored Whitaker’s biologically female anatomy and the sex listed on her birth certificate because she “does not identify as” female, adding that “it is unclear that the sex marker on a birth certificate can even be used as a true proxy for an individual’s biological sex.”
The Daily Caller reports:
The court slapped down the school district’s argument that males should use bathrooms designated for males and females should use bathrooms designated for females. Such a view is “too narrow,” the court said. Whitaker “has a medically diagnosed and documented condition” — gender dysphoria. As such, the judges reasoned, she must live “in accordance” with her “gender identity.”
The court held that Whitaker is likely to prevail on her Title IX claim that she is being “sex-stereotyped” as a girl because of her biological status as a female. Title IX is a comprehensive 1972 federal law that prohibits federally-funded entities from discriminating on the basis of biological sex.
While parents and residents of Kenosha have complained, their claims were dismissed by the court, which said that any harm to the male students who will be required to share the facilities with Whitaker are merely “speculative and based upon conjecture.”