Rights Denied: Tennessee Kills Gender Change Recognition Bill
Tennessee lawmakers have voted to kill a bill that would have allowed trans people to amend their birth certificates to reflect a change in their gender expression.
Legislation authorizing amendment of birth certificates of people undergoing sex change operations to reflect their new gender has been killed on a voice vote in a House Health and Human Resources Subcommittee.
Sponsor Rep. Jeanne Richardson, D-Memphis, said Tennessee is the only state in the nation that does not allow for such a revision after a sex change operation.
While the “Don’t Say Gay” bill has perhaps hogged the limelight there’s been plenty of anti-LGBT legislation to choose from in Tennessee of late, and in particular one odious bill aimed at trans people that was a result of one State Representative’s overt bigotry.
The legislation, originally sponsored by State Representative Richard Floyd and sponsored in the Senate by Senator Bo Watson, would have imposed a $50 fine for anyone using a bathroom or changing room that didn’t match the gender on their birth certificate — again, this in a state where trans people cannot amend their identification.
Perhaps even worse than this, Floyd, the original sponsor of the legislation, said that he wanted to stop “perverts” from going into the women’s facilities and said that if he saw a trans person in there he would “just try to stomp a mudhole in him and then stomp him dry.”
He added, “We cannot continue to let these people dominate how society acts and reacts. Now if somebody thinks he’s a woman and he’s a man and wants to try on women’s clothes, let him take them into the men’s bathroom or dressing room.”
The bill was quickly withdrawn after a public outcry.
Tennessee’s continued denial of the right to amend identification as part of a gender transition — a medically recognized procedure to treat GID — seems to be just one more example of Tennessee’s continued capitulation to a far-right social agenda.