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Reading Summary 4: His & Hers: Designing for a Post-Gender Society


Emily Bazelon writes about the type of discrimination that come with public bathrooms. The bathroom is a place where most be people fell vulnerable and may feel more exposed than they ever have in a public place. Bazelon points out how Women wait for an extremely longer period of time than men to use the bathroom. Groups outside of male and female seem to not have a stance or equality for the necessity of using public restrooms. The fear that a man will hurt a female in a mixed stall has scared people out of equality. Transgender students all over the country are being called by their preferred name and join the sports team identify with which is a step towards equality at all levels but not all. A teenage transgender undergoing hormone therapy is not being treated as the person she is. Her school will not allow her to change with other females in the locker room. This is seen as a problem because children are being discriminated against. At the same time the transgender teen does not fit in ordinary category that has previously existed so some “accommodations must be made. The word accommodation is, “…often sets up a distinction between the normal and the other” (Bazelon). Those who are transgender and some who are not transgender want Transgenderism to be normalized. Making “accommodations”, seem as there is being room made for the undesired. Bazelon tries to prove to the reader that separated bathrooms based on sex is a form of segregation. Some feminist feel as though certain “accommodations”, for men benefit them and do not do the same for females. “Over time, women have become attached to the camaraderie of the ladies’ room” (Bezelon). The camaraderie that women share is also a way to discriminate against transgender people. Women highly enjoy the time spent in the bathroom away from men and the time to spend with a women or someone they see as an equal to them. When a transgender person comes in to join the camaraderie, women do not want to share themselves with a man. Time in the ladies room was meant to be for them and feel as though a “man”, is coming in and stealing their time. Transgenders feel pushed out of society and pushed out of everyday activities such as using public restrooms. Something as simple as using the restroom to a person who is transgender equates to a huge problem that involves the help of the law. To a person who is transgender, walking into a bathroom full of women is normal because although she is not fully a biological one, she feels as though she is. The gender she identifies with is what she feels she should be treated as. Other accommodations are made for children and adults who have certain disabilities to make them feel comfortable in their skin and have the same rights as others. Those who are transgender want to same rights and common privileges as other human beings.

“His & Hers: Designing for a Post-Gender Society – Metropolis Magazine – March 2015.” Accessed February 17, 2016. http://www.metropolismag.com/March-2015/His-or-Hers-Designing-for-a-Post-Gender-Society/.

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