Archives For public bathrooms

gender neutral bathroom 6859753101_20c04253d6_z

 

 

Dear Target management:

 

Your corporate announcement April 19 reiterating your "stand for inclusivity" in relation to transgender bathroom laws failed to include me. And, since you stated on your corporate webpage that you "strive to make (y)our guests and team members feel accepted, respected, and welcomed in (y)our stores and workplaces every day," I figured you would value hearing why I feel incredibly rejected, disregarded and unwelcome in your store.

 

I am a mother of a child sexual abuse victim. Issues of child safety are not political to me. They are very personal. So, please, in the name of "inclusivity" allow me to express my objections.

 

Allowing anyone of any biological or perceived gender at any time in any bathroom (or dressing room) of their choice for any reason with anyone else is outlandish. Your global policy statement opens many questions for which there seem to be no reasonable answers. 

 

First, how will you protect children and women from sexual predators who on any given day may choose to self-identify as transgender just so they can gain access to their next victim? Second, what about sexual abuse victims rights of privacy? Don’t they have a right to privacy in public places where their own personal space is most vulnerable? Third, how will anyone supervise the security of these "inclusive" facilities? Will you hire security force bathroom attendants to keep voyeurs out? And how will the untested laws provide boundaries of what is appropriate bathroom behaviors for those who just want what has now become a legal peek? And what about a large percentage of us who just want our privacy while we are performing bodily functions? Why aren’t we included in your "inclusivity" to NOT have members of the opposite biological gender in a stall next to us performing their bodily functions? And, how can your corporate policy statement issued at the national level mandate local government policy interpretations in my local region?

 

Lest you choose to identify my aforementioned arguments as "hysteria" or "discrimination," I encourage you to click on the links where many of the situations I listed above have already happened. Then I also ask you to view the video Women: Decide For Yourselves and then explain to me how you will assure that I, as well as other women or children, will be safe in your stores when your policies are in full swing. Are you not concerned about the potential lawsuits to your stores in the face of potential crimes?

 

Once I learned of your new corporate decision, I immediately called my local Target store. A very sweet lady answered and attempted to refer me to the corporate headquarters phone number. (800-440-0680)  I was polite with her, but asked her to please take my concerns to her local manager. You see, the bathrooms you are writing policies for are not at your corporate headquarters building. They are in my local small town community. And as a community leader, I do not want to see any of our local children or women become the victims that ignites court cases which would eventually reverse these dangerous activist policies!

 

Do you see now why I feel excluded? How will you include my needs in your inclusive policies? How will you include the needs of the more than one in four women who have been victims of sexual abuse and who struggle with issues of personal safety and sexual privacy? Sure the needs of the 0.3 percent of the population that identifies as transgender deserve attention. But opening the 99.7 percent up to negative consequences is not the way to help. Private accommodations in separate facilities are the sensible and kind solution.

 

I believe I speak for a large group of concerned citizens who, in the past have been your faithful customers. For our safety and that of our families, we will not continue to do business in your store until these issues are appropriately addressed. We are watching the LGBT activists in the business world draw their lines and we, as law abiding citizens and business customers who consider this issue morally reprehensible and dangerous, are ready to draw our lines as well.

 

Thank you for your consideration in these matters. I look forward to receiving a response to my inquiry.

 

 

Sincerely,

 

Lisa Cherry

 

 

 

Postscript to readers:

 

The dark force of lawlessness has hit our nation like a flood. It is time we not only support those in the public leadership who are attempting to affect change on our behalf, but also to wade into the deep waters ourselves and courageously take a stand. 

Here are three very important action steps to consider right now:

 

  1. Call your local store. Ask how they will handle the store policies and voice your concern.

 

  1. Repost this article on Facebook and discuss the issues with your neighbor. We have to take action now to stop this insanity.

 

  1. Be willing to take steps of action. No, it may not be convenient to stop shopping at Target, but if we don't make the sacrifices now, what other freedoms are we willing to lose as we watch these new laws exclude us from our rights?

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Lisa Cherry's  passion is to encourage and equip today's Christians. She is the author of “Like A Flood: Live Boldly. Love Truthfully. Stand Fearlessly in a Post Christian America,” “Not Open: Win the Invisible Spiritual Culture War” and “Unmask the Predators: Every Parent's Battle to Protect Their Children.” She may be contacted via her ministry website Frontlinefamilies.org.

 

Image: Jeffrey Beall "Gender Neutral Restroom" via Flickr Creative Commons

License: Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-SA 2.0)

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Last week, Mississippi's Republican governor, Phil Bryant, signed a new religious freedom bill into law. This was on the heels of another bold act by North Carolina’s governor, Pat McCrory, who signed House Bill 2, the Public Facilities Privacy and Security Act, on March 23. Both of these governors’ actions set off a firestorm of controversy that lit up the online newsfeed with debate as the conservative Christian view of their actions and in these bills seems pretty clear. These men are heroes. And for very good reason.

For in spite of the massive backlash they may face, these courageous men are willing to say a distinct "no." Today as never before we need more of these heroes who are willing to stand up and say,

“No, I will not agree that fifty-eight gender identities are normal.”

“No, I will not agree that anyone can marry anyone and God says it’s okay.”

“No, I do not believe that a woman has a right to kill a baby just because.”

“No, I do not believe all roads lead to God and all religions are therefore ‘peaceful.’”

“No, I will not arbitrarily deny the reality of gender in DNA.”

“No, I will not tell my children that however, whenever, and with whomever they want to have sex is totally up to them to decide.”

“No, I will not alter 2,000 plus years of biblical interpretation for the sake of those among us who want a new deal.

“No, I will not pretend that “free love” is loving, or that “politically correct” is correct, or that “tolerance” is tolerant, or that “social justice” is just.

We must choose to stand with courage and answer a just plain "no." We will not be tricked, coerced, bribed or threatened. We will not change and we will not move. And, no matter what anyone says, we are not going to apologize and we are not sorry.

Oh that felt good to express that, didn't it? The volcanic pressure building inside us yearns to address the darkness that has enveloped our land like a flood, and to expose it for what it is: a massive spiritual deception. We might fantasize about walking through the public square and asking complete strangers, "Excuse me, but can you agree that something has gone terribly wrong in our land and our world? Can you see it? Are you aware? Wickedness, sin, and lawlessness are flooding our streets, and it is dangerous and deeply disturbing!" But will we actually do it?

That is why we look for heroes who do what we dream about.

This is an Isaiah 59:19 moment in history. The enemy has come in like a flood sweeping our families and friends off their feet and toppling foundational beliefs that have endured for thousands of years with its tsunami force. We are desperate for the Lord to make good on His promise in the second half of this often quoted Bible verse:

" When the enemy comes in like a flood...the spirit of the Lord will raise up a standard against him.” Isaiah 59:19

We are eagerly awaiting the Spirit of the Lord to do His work and squash the devil's schemes. It is as if we are saying, "We need some massive angelic assistance down here, Lord. We need You to show up with Your heavenly host to put dark perverse forces on the run and set leaders in place to save the day. And we need it like yesterday, please!"

So we get excited when we see courageous acts such as these of these two governors and think someone might be functioning as an agent for this God work.

But is it possible that while we have been waiting for God to do something supernaturally miraculous to stop the flood, God has something else in mind? Could it be that He is raising up a standard and that standard is actually us, the common ordinary Christians, who take the Isaiah 59:19 promise through the grid of our New Testament realities? For according to the words of Jesus and the entire doctrine of the New Testament, we are His agents on the earth.

So while we are crying out for Him to do something about the darkness, He is saying, "You step into the flood, because when you do, I, in you, will raise up the standard against the enemy's best plans.”

So, I agree with those who are offering support of Mississippi Governor Bryant. Indeed he has taken his part as a standard bearer. But the question becomes, will we do the same in our own lives when we are called to be the Standard?

Somehow it is easier to remain in our cozy armchairs, to criticize the people we think should have stood in the flood and failed. Go ahead and get mad at Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe and Georgia Governor Nathan Deal who, according to our view, seemed to wimp out.

But let's get honest. When the issues get closer to home, we sometimes shake in our own pious boots. Stepping into the flood and becoming a standard bearer is not comfortable, popular or risk-free. Sure, not many of us are like the leaders of North Carolina who have over 100 major American business leaders breathing economic threats down their backs at the hands of the Human Rights Campaign LGBT activist group. Not many of us are feeling the pressure of PayPal or Pepsi or the NBA. But that does not mean our standard bearing role is insignificant.

The honest truth is that most of us are struggling with the inconvenient cost of our "less glamorous" roles. We don't want to be labeled bigots or haters. We don't want our family or friends to reject us with our views. We don't want to risk our jobs, suffer economically or be inconvenienced.

So we play the game. We do nothing while the loud minority seems willing to lay everything down.

Oh, we cajole ourselves with the line that our "little man actions" will do nothing significant to raise up a standard. Hey, what can a few million of us do anyway, we chide ourselves, while the activists smugly call the shots?

Cancel our own Paypal account? How disruptive!

Give up our Starbucks? You've got to be kidding!

Get involved politically? How utterly useless!

So, I guess the plans of the enemy work, and we sit home complaining it is all out our control.

We stay at our post on the sidelines of the battle cheering the standard bearers who dare to wade in. But maybe it is time to do more than cheer. History will record what each of us does with our own standard-bearing moments. Some of us will embrace the cost to take our place as the Dietrich Bonhoeffers of our generation who, even in the face of death, refuse to back down. Others will be like the German establishment church, who rolled right in with the darkness in fear of personal inconvenience and suffering.

Oh, I can predict the objection to the previous paragraph's comparison: Don't be so melodramatic! We are just talking about bathrooms for goodness sake. To which I would say, "That's ridiculous and incredibly naive!" The dark flood that is steamrolling our generation is after every bit of holiness God designed. It is Romans chapter one. This screeching voice of change wants nothing less than complete lawlessness to rule. And we, as believers, should be able to see into the spirit of antichrist (1 John 4:1-4) that is at work.

So, if not now, then when? If we cannot be inconvenienced and suffer now, what makes us think we will do it then? Will we suddenly get brave when we are faced with a little mark that, without which, we will not be able to buy and sell? Will we get ready to face our fears, laziness and insecurities later when the threat gets a little more “real”?

How much more intense do the threats need to get?

You see our little idea of screaming “NO!” is only part of the needed answer. We as the church of Jesus Christ will also need a strong "YES" if we are really to be able to step into the flood as the standard. We will need to say,

“Yes Lord, we will take up our cross daily.”

“Yes, we will embrace the persecution that Jesus promised would be ours.”

“Yes, we will prepare our lives as one of Your five wise virgins.”

“Yes, we will receive Your power to be the standard in this most critical hour.”

___________

 

P.S. On Thursday I had a chance to share the message of Like a Flood on the Harvest Show. Click on the links below to see that interview.

Lisa Cherry | Harvest Show Interview Part 1 | 4/14/2016

Lisa Cherry | Harvest Show Interview Part 2 | 4/14/2016

 

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Today is the day! 

Please help us boost to #1 today.

Like a Flood National Launch: Saturday, April 16

6 a.m. - 8 p.m.  CST

Today is the national launch of Like a Flood.

Please help us make it a big success, so that we can reach a wide audience with this very important message.

Be sure to purchase your copy today here on Amazon.com between 6am-8pm CST. Thanks!

* * * Excerpt from Like a Flood * * *

Our nation has clearly made a wrong turn. If America's greatness has in any way been tied to our worship of Almighty God and our promotion of godly morality and character, we, by very definition, are in trouble.

But the condition of our nation is only a part of the dark flood story. Over the course of human history, nations come and go So American's sowing toward wickedness will inevitably create a harvest of wickedness. How horrible! None of us want this to happen.

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Maybe you read the sad stories reported recently of two McDonald's bathroom disasters.

First, a cruel "prank" by teenage girls that left superglue on a little girl’s bottom.

Second, a tragic pedophile attack against a little six year old boy.

I was furious when I read these accounts as I am sure you were too. My heart goes out to both the victims and the parents.

These stories have unleashed a flurry of online discussion asking this question:

How old should a child be to go to a public restroom unsupervised?

I would imagine that both of these parents that came forward to tell their stories deeply regret that their children were injured and wish they could go back and make that day's bathroom decision over again. So, I am not trying to add pain to their already hurting hearts.

But we do need to have a frank conversation here on this post as this is a tough issue for most of us to figure out for the following reasons:

  1. We do not want to raise paranoid children or fearful children.
  2.  We want our children protected at all cost from all forms of sexual assault and harassment.
  3.  We all have to use public bathrooms and many of us have opposite sex children who are too old to enter the restroom with us.

Moms at mall found this sign posted on the door of the women’s restroom: “Please boys over 6 years of age use Men’s restroom. Thank you.” The image was later posted on Facebook with commenters debating how to handle this.

I would love to hear how your family has solved this difficult issue.

Here are 10 thoughts I have on this issue that has been in my daily world for over 25 years! (not necessarily in order of importance)

1.  Don't care what people think:   I am going to make the best decisions I can for my children even if others around me are not in agreement

2.  Err on the side of caution:  If there will be an error, I choose to lean on the conservative side of safety rather than the side of independence or convenience.

3.  Trust no one:  Obviously, that sounds quite inflammatory! But in a public rest room I have no reason to trust anyone no matter how "nice" they look. I am too smart to believe that pedophiles wear signs around their necks. But I do put my trust in the Lord who gives us wisdom and discernment as well as divine protection.

4.  Teach your kids at home:  Be the annoying mom or dad that regularly reviews your family's safety rules and procedures. Do not think kids heard it once and never need reminders. Walk through common scenarios. Equip yourself with this podcast: “Teaching Our Kids Self-Protection Skills” with Protection Trainer Alli Neal.  

5. Pre-think bathroom issues:  Think ahead about bathrooms if at all possible. Cut the odds by having everyone use the bathroom before departure. This one tip faithfully implemented has caused me a great reduction in public bathroom issues.

6. Learn where your best family friendly options are located:  Once my mom became handicapped it is amazing how I took note of the best handicap stall options in town and learned to plan our shopping around them! The same is true for young parents needing to protect children.

7. Buddy systems throughout the visit:  Obviously, the buddy system is a help. However, kids will often run out ahead of each other and not stay together unless reminded.

8. Carry a potty chair: This is for the youngest readers among us but a great one to consider. Because I had so many kids so close together, there were many years that I carried a potty chair in my car as a matter of habit because I could not handle them all safely in public rest rooms without mess! Call it the "travel potty" instead of the potty chair. In a pinch 5 or 6 year olds can use travel pots.

9. Be the loud mom or dad:  When Josiah my youngest has to enter the men's room now and I have no other option (i.e. no family bathroom available and no buddy system in place), I announce very loudly right by the entrance to the men's room: "Josiah, I am standing right out here by the door waiting for you. Call me if you have any problems." I figure this is a good deterrent!

10. Support parental choices: I hesitate to put an exact age on when a boy should no longer enter the women's room. So when I see one that appears "bigger," I always give the mom a nod of support. She may even know something we don't. Her son may have special needs.  I figure we can all give each other some room and help keep our kids safe! The same is true when I see a helpless dad sending a little girl in by herself. I watch over that child without touching them or causing them to "talk to strangers."

What other ideas have you and your family found helpful?

Here is another blogger’s post on this topic:   Kids Should Not Go to the Restroom Alone

And this mom had a system, but it fell apart when they were out with family: Boys and Public Restrooms: When Is It Okay to Go Alone?

One final thought:

[Love]...always protects... 1 Corinthians 13:7

Image:  Wikipedia