Left-wing media points fingers when school district puts hold on gender-neutral locker rooms

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The Los Angeles Times has published a lengthy piece that delves into the Long Beach Unified School District decision to “pause” gender-neutral locker rooms while pointedly blaming conservative news outlet Breitbart for stirring the transgender waters.

The author, Laura Newberry, reported that after two years the district ironically “drew a clear conclusion: Now was the time for a new kind of locker room, one that would give all students privacy in a space that’s long been a source of teenage anxiety and dread.”

Wilson High School was set to install “private stalls big enough for students to both shower and change in. The aim was to ensure safe access to the facilities for all students, regardless of gender identity or expression.” That is, until pesky Breitbart skewed their plans.

In November 2021, Breitbart ran an article entitled, “Parents Alarmed as California High School Unveils ‘All Gender’ Locker Room.” It correctly highlighted the fear that parents still have concerning boys and girls mingling in locker rooms and the very real possibility of sexual assault.

“The opposition kicked up a few days later when a small group of community members spoke out against the locker room plan at a Dec. 1 board meeting. They continued to rail against the project at the next few meetings, and news outlets picked up the story,” Newberry carped.

That reportedly resulted in the district putting a hold on the locker room project on Feb. 2 until it could gather more “community input.”

Then she turned to what she characterized as “vitriol” at school board meetings across the nation.

“Though the discourse in Long Beach has been peaceful compared with the vitriol that has played out in school board meetings across the country, it reflects a national trend of a public that’s increasingly clashing with school officials over issues such as LGBTQ rights, vaccine mandates and curriculum. And it’s happening against a backdrop of an unprecedented wave of legislation that seeks to restrict the rights of transgender youth,” she asserted.

The piece continues on about how oppressed the minuscule number of transgender students are and then points out that the “district now requires all new school construction to include gender-neutral locker rooms and bathrooms, and encourages middle and high schools undergoing renovations to consider installing them.”

Newberry crows over Wilson High’s locker room design where “each stall includes a shower, changing area, bench and storage nook. The partitions between each stall would extend nearly to the ceiling and floor, and waist-high lockers would allow for coaches to easily supervise the space.” What she doesn’t address are those individuals that use cell phones to record students in various stages of undress in locker rooms and how the coaches can’t be everywhere all the time.

No vote has been scheduled by the Board of Education on the matter yet. The author once again referred to Breitbart’s story and conservative opponents of the locker rooms who spoke at every December and January board meeting against them. She states that they wouldn’t stop until officials had paused the project.

A father of a sophomore swimmer at Wilson, Robert Hamilton, bluntly contended that Lakewood High’s all-gender restroom had become a “cesspool.”

“By building coed lockers rooms, you’ll be intentionally placing our children, my daughter in particular … at much greater risk of sexual assault,” he charged. “This issue will indeed cost some of you your reelections if you’re unwilling or incapable of protecting … the health and safety of our children.”

Scott Rice, who graduated from Wilson in 1985 but doesn’t have children, spoke up saying the locker rooms were “ludicrous and dangerous for kids.”

“We need to put a hold on this project and get real input and not dictates from a woke group,” he proclaimed, according to the LA Times.

“We will lose winners to outside our district if we go by this plan. It’s guaranteed; I’m already hearing parents talk about it,” stated assistant coach Katie Rowe.

The locker rooms were part of a $23 million pool redo. According to Patch, “aquatic athletes and coaches complained that they weren’t consulted or asked for their opinion.”

Newberry writes that “more than two-thirds of LGBTQ youth say recent efforts by states to limit the rights of transgender and nonbinary people have negatively impacted their mental health, according to a poll released by the Trevor Project in January.”

The author fervently defended LGBTQ and transgender rights in the piece. But it would seem that what leftists and the media want for students is not what parents or the majority of students themselves want. The locker room issue may be paused indefinitely.


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