Just so we’re clear: Pepper spraying an adult for molesting you on the street is illegal. But pepper spraying a transgender kid for going into a stall, locking it, and urinating in private, before unlocking said stall and washing their hands at the sink is completely legal.
“A school board in North Carolina, which voted to adopt a policy allowing pepper sprays in high schools, is now ‘rethinking’ its decision after feedback from the community, a board member told BuzzFeed News Wednesday.
The Rowan-Salisbury Board voted Monday to amend its policy prohibiting high school students from carrying pepper sprays on campus, the Salisbury Post first reported.
However, Chuck Hughes, a board member who voted in favor of the policy, told BuzzFeed News he will personally vote against it in the next session on May 23, after he realized that the ‘cons far outweighed the pros.’ He also said that ‘many board members’ he had talked to ‘will think this over again.’
During Monday’s session, Hughes was reported to come out in favor of allowing sprays citing HB2 concerns. According to the Salisbury Post, he said, ‘Depending on how the courts rule on the bathroom issues, it may be a pretty valuable tool to have on the female students if they go to the bathroom, not knowing who may come in.’
Hughes backtracked [today], telling BuzzFeed News that his comments were ‘inappropriate’ and that they had nothing do with the LGBT community.
‘I was not thinking about the LGBT issue,’ Hughes said. ‘Perverts and pedophiles taking advantage of this law in bathrooms was my major concern.'”
Nevermind that this idea hadn’t struck Hughes until last week, but such an admittance speaks of the immense incompetence of not only himself, but of the entire school board. What kind of administrative board doesn’t conduct comprehensive background checks on every single applicant looking to work with the children of their district? Why would there be any “perverts” working in any of those schools? Don’t they utilize behavioral questionnaires in their interview processes? Don’t they conduct the mandatory psychological exams on teachers, coaches, nurses, administrative staff, guidance counselors, and guards?
“North Carolina and the Department of Justice have sued each other over House Bill 2 (HB2), which was passed into law in March and bans transgender people access to restrooms that match their gender identity in government buildings and schools.
The law has sparked protests and several companies and performers have refused to work in North Carolina.
Hughes said he thought of pepper sprays as a ‘defensive tool’ when he voted to allow it on campuses but he realized it could also be misused by students.
‘The LGBT issue has never been a problem to my knowledge,’ Hughes said. ‘People have a different sexual identity, they go about their business. You don’t even know that a transgender is in your bathroom. They’re not there to create havoc. But perverts are.’
Hughes said he was not homophobic and that the LGBT community had rights to be protected. ‘They’re not the ones to look out for,’ he said. ‘My statement was misinterpreted and when I hear other people talking about it, I can see how it was misinterpreted.’
He said he could see teenage boys pretending that their gender identity was female to enter bathrooms ‘as a joke.’
He said that after hearing the ‘negatives’ from the community on allowing students to carry pepper sprays, the ‘cons outweighed the pros’ and that he put ‘more faith in teens than perhaps I should have.’
Hughes said the board had the opportunity to hear from the community and would take their feedback into consideration during their next session where they will vote on the policy after a second reading.”
I’d honestly like to know what kind of kids go to these schools. What teenage boy decides, even on a prank, to go into the girl’s bathroom? Not only would one imagine that it’s the same as the boy’s bathroom (because why wouldn’t you?), but who thinks that much about the restroom to devise a plan to walk into a room that’s empty for the vast majority of the day? If anything, a teenager would sneak into a locker room, but even then, they’d have to walk past the coaches in order to get to the showers, the toilets, and the lockers/changing areas (again, which are only occupied for about fifteen minutes prior to gym class, because, hi, no one changes for gym).