One of the most exciting days of my life was the day I finally got to vote. One-hundred years before, I could have been jailed for the simple act of casting my ballot. This week we celebrate the official ratification of the 19th Amendment – the Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that protects the right to vote for both men and women. The ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920 was a huge step forward in our nation in creating a more perfect union.

While the political Left has tried to hijack women for their cause – saying they have to think a certain way or support certain candidates – the 19th Amendment is not about identity politics. The 19th Amendment is about recognizing the dignity and worth of women to our society. Just like the 15th Amendment further worked out the philosophy of the Founders to include all races, the 19th Amendment was a further unveiling of the original ideas of the Founders.

Women have pushed back against the Left’s attempt to hijack us for their cause. Women like Phyllis Schlafly,who stood up against the push to pass the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) that would have eradicated our ability to regulate the abortion industry and erased hard won victories for women. She paved the way for so many women to advocate for their conservative belief systems. While not perfect, God used her to help wake up the church and women all across the nation from their apathy about politics.

But the Left is at it again trying to erase women from the story. Maleness and femaleness are gifts from God and therefore defined by Him. But the Left wants to buck God’s design and re-write truth. They are pushing not only the ERA on a national level but are also working to reverse or stop all state initiatives to protect life and girls’ places in our society. In fact, a major goal of the of the Biden-Harris ticket for 2020 is to stop state laws that protect life.

This is exactly what our state Supreme Court tried to do through its radical abortion ruling in 2019 that took away our ability to regulate the abortion industry for the safety of women and girls in Kansas. While pro-life advocates worked to give Kansans a say in the process, Governor Kelly and the Democrats tried to silence the voices of women and men across our state by blocking Value Them Both – a constitutional amendment to correct what the Court declared.

The wonderful thing is that we have strong female legislators in Kansas that fight for babies in the womb, who advocate for the safety of all women, that will stand up for fairness in sports, and who do not cower when the Left tries to mandate who they have to be, what they have to believe, and what they have to say to be deemed a woman. It is an honor to stand alongside these women to fight for life, religious freedom, and families every day. Together we are a force to be reckoned with as we continue to work to pass Value Them Both this next legislative session.

I am thankful for the opportunities that I have and do not take them for granted. I can only pray, that like Phyllis Schlafly and our female legislators in Kansas, that the work I do leaves a legacy for each woman in Kansas to be free to become who God intended for her to be. May we never take for granted the gift of womanhood or the ability to vote in our country.

For the women of Kansas,

Brittany Jones
Director of Advocacy

The Fairness in Women’s Sports legislation has passed the House—but we need your help to get it through the Senate and to the desk of the governor for his signature.

This legislation, sponsored by Rep. Barbara Ehardt (R-Idaho Falls) and Sen. Mary Souza (R-Coeur d’Alene), would end the Idaho policy allowing biological boys to play in girls’ sports after receiving cross-sex hormones for one year.

The Fairness in Women’s Sports Act recognizes the common-sense truth that boys should not play on girls’ teams. Our girls should not be deprived of athletic opportunities, victories, and scholarships because they were forced to compete against men.

Ask any student athlete, high school coach, or parent—allowing biological men to perform in girls’ sports unfairly puts biological girls at a competitive disadvantage. The size, strength, bone structure, lung volume, and heart supply of the average male far outpaces even the most elite female athletes, even after the biological male undergoes hormone therapy.

This legislation doesn’t exclude anyone from sports. Instead, it simply requires that boys compete with boys and girls compete with girls—and that’s something we all should agree on.

HERE’S WHAT YOU CAN DO: Use our Action Center to send an email to your senator and the governor. Ask them to support this important legislation protecting girls’ sports. It only takes thirty seconds of your time, but you can make a difference by acting now!

Standing with you and our daughters,

Blaine Conzatti
Director of Advocacy

Yet again, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has proven it cares more about its agenda of social engineering than carrying out its role as an impartial arbiter of justice according to the rule of law.

With all the media coverage, there’s little chance you’ve missed the story: Mason “Adree” Edmo must be provided sex reassignment surgery by Idaho Department of Corrections, a three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit ruled last week.

The panel agreed with a district judge who had previously ruled that the state’s refusal to provide the surgery amounts to “cruel and unusual punishment” under the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Edmo was sentenced to ten years in state prison for sexually assaulting a child under 16 years old.

Thankfully, Governor Brad Little has publicized his intention to appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. He argues that hardworking Idaho taxpayers shouldn’t be forced to pay for a convicted child molester’s sex-change operation.

But one overlooked part of this story is even more troubling than the surgery’s price tag: If Edmo undergoes sex reassignment surgery, he will be transferred to a state women’s prison.

This move would echo the disturbing trend of other attempts to allow – or, some might argue, force – biological men into spaces created to keep women safe.

Take, for instance, the Hope Center, a Christian shelter in Anchorage that provides, among other services, overnight accommodations to women victimized by rape, domestic violence, and sex trafficking.

When a drunk and injured biological man identifying as a woman attempted to obtain overnight shelter with the women, the Hope Center paid for the man’s taxi ride to a local hospital. As the lawyer for Hope Center later pointed out, abused women “shouldn’t be forced to sleep or disrobe in the same room as a man.”

Shortly thereafter, the Anchorage Equal Rights Commission filed complaints against the Hope Center. They allege the shelter discriminated against the man based on his gender identity, thereby violating the local SOGI (sexual orientation/gender identity) nondiscrimination ordinance.

Although the final decision for the discrimination complaints will not come until next year, a federal judge ruled earlier this month that the Hope Center could continue offering overnight shelter services to women as the lawsuit moves forward.

Sadly, sex-segregated spaces designed for the benefit, protection, and privacy of women are under attack. Whether it’s dressing rooms at retail stores, public restrooms, high school locker rooms, state prisons, or women’s shelters, radical activists are demanding that biological men be granted access to women’s facilities.

It’s an easily observable truth that there are only two genders, determined by biology. This conception of sex and gender serves as the only factual and just basis for public policy. Moreover, we must protect the rights of women and girls to be safe and secure in spaces designed for their protection and comfort.

As the Idaho corrections case shows, these truths must be defended, even in Idaho. And Family Policy Alliance of Idaho® will keep standing strong, doing just that.

Standing with you,

Blaine Conzatti
Director of Advocacy

 

By Stephanie Curry, Esq. Public Policy Manager for Family Policy Alliance®

In 2012, federal prison guidelines required prisons to start considering “gender identity” when placing inmates. This meant a man could be issued women’s clothing, use women’s showers or even be transferred to an all woman’s prison by saying he identified as a woman, without having had a sex change operation. Just as disturbing is that a woman could be transferred to an all men’s prison as well. Once these guidelines were passed and implemented, the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) was the target of multiple lawsuits from women who were threatened and abused as a result of the new policy.

The Women of Fort Worth

One group of prisoners who sued the BOP were female inmates in Fort Worth, Texas. Their lawsuits declared that it was dangerous and degrading for the Bureau of Prisons to allow men (who identified as women) into women’s bathrooms and showers. The behavior of the men caused the women to suffer “disgust, embarrassment, humiliation, stress, degradation, fear and loss of dignity.”

Certainly, prisoners live in a world very different than the one we’re accustomed to. But the Supreme Court has been very clear that prisoners have basic constitutional rights that belong to all citizens and cannot be taken away by the government. For example, prisoners have the right to be free from cruelty, inhumane treatment, and humiliation. This means even inmates retain the right to bodily privacy and dignity.

In a larger sense, the right to bodily privacy means that prisoners cannot be subject to physical humiliations, such as the refusal of clothing or showers. It also means being free from sexual violence and harassment and having the right to use a bathroom with privacy, especially and particularly from the opposite sex. This is not only to protect the prisoner’s safety, but also to protect their dignity.

The good news is the Bureau of Prisons recently updated their policies (in light of the multiple lawsuits and Trump Administration guidance) declaring prisoners’ safety to be paramount above gender identity considerations. Biological sex will once again be the first factor considered when placing prisoners.

But that leads us to our next question:

If bodily privacy is a basic right that belongs to prisoners, why doesn’t it also belong to our students in schools?

Standing for Students

The women of Fort Worth asked themselves that same question when the Obama Administration handed down the “Transgender Mandate,” a policy that would allow men and boys into girls’ bathrooms and locker rooms in public schools. These female inmates were horrified at the government’s willingness to compromise our children’s safety in schools. These women had experienced men in their bathrooms and found it to be a traumatic violation. The women rose up on behalf of students in Texas schools– from their prison cells. They requested to be intervenors in the lawsuit to stop the Obama administration rule from going into effect. (Intervenors are those who are not a party to a lawsuit, but they offer an important perspective on an issue.) They certainly had a unique perspective because they had lived through this policy being implemented and found it to be dangerous, fundamentally unfair, and a deep violation of their privacy and bodily integrity.

A Texas Federal Court did block the school Transgender Mandate.  The Trump Administration also issued a memo officially reversing the school Transgender Mandate from Obama’s era. But the damage had already been done.

Schools are still implementing policies that allow men and boys into girls’ bathrooms! Of course, it is absurd to think that prisoners have a more protected right to privacy than our children. Yet, that is what is happening across the country as schools implement “non-discrimination” policies or “transgender rights” policies.

Family Policy Alliance and our allied groups in over 40 states want to partner with you to protect your child’s privacy at school in your state. The government does not and cannot have the power to take away the privacy, safety, or dignity of our children. If you have children in schools, learn your school’s bathroom and privacy policies. If you have questions about the policy or if the policy violates your child’s privacy rights, please reach out to Family Policy Alliance or your state-based ally. Finally, please support candidates in the upcoming election who are willing to protect the privacy and safety of our children in schools!

The #MeToo campaign is everywhere.

It’s on social media, in the papers and on television. Although #MeToo actually started in 2007, it only gained widespread attention recently when actress Alyssa Milano asked women who had ever been victims of sexual abuse or harassment to tweet “#MeToo.” Within hours, women all over the world came forward and bravely acknowledged they had been victims. Unfortunately, it is now being co-opted by some who want to twist its fundamental message into a conversation about the evils of men and restrictions on abortion. However, the larger message remains intact, highlighting the sheer number of women who have been victims.

One notable thing I have found missing in the #MeToo discussion is the issue of sexual predatory practices that can result from the “progressive” movement to push the gender-identity agenda. That agenda advocates for actions that would further contribute to the problem.

When bills like HB 1386, introduced into our state Legislature earlier this year, become the rallying cry of the LGBTQ community for special treatment, the obvious safety issues are ignored or even denied. The fact is this bill, and similar ones across the nation, would allow men and boys to use girls’ locker rooms and bathrooms – if they’re willing to say they identify as female. Such laws perpetuate the underlying #MeToo problem that women and girls are devalued and that activism takes priority over safety. Thankfully, with the testimony of Family Policy Alliance of North Dakota and our partner organizations, and with your direct involvement contacting your representatives, our Legislature struck down the bill.

So, to answer the question I posed in the headline: “How do we end the #MeToo campaign?”

By recognizing that moms and daughters are created in God’s image.

By remembering that God commands us to love and cherish them.

By striking down any legislation or policy that would provide opportunities for further sexual assaults and harassment.

If we address the root problems, it is my hope and prayer that the #MeToo campaign would end – because it is no longer needed.

Family Policy Alliance created the “Ask Me First” project to provide a place for women to share their stories – stories the activists on the other side would rather you didn’t hear.

Then, won’t you please go to our Action Center and join with us in letting our legislators know we value moms and daughters? Thank you for standing up for what’s right and in accord with God’s plan for our wives and daughters!

Mark Jorritsma
President and Executive Director
Family Policy Alliance of North Dakota

 

common-sense

The bathroom issue will be front and center in many states this year, and Texas is no exception.

Right now, the state Senate is considering SB 6, the Texas Privacy Act, that would stop men from getting access to women’s bathrooms, locker rooms and changing areas.

“Texans overwhelmingly oppose these attacks on women’s privacy and safety,” said Jonathan Saenz with Texas Values. “Our Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Sen. Lois Kolkhorst are to be commended for introducing this legislation.”

A recent Texas voter survey found a majority of Texans agreeing that public restrooms should be restricted by gender.

“This bill is written not to bring a controversy,” Kolkhorst said. “The Texas Privacy Act is a thoughtful solution to a sensitive issue. It preserves an expected level of privacy for our public schools and buildings. At the same time, it also allows for schools and universities to make personal accommodations for those requesting an alternate setting. The responsibility falls on all of us to protect citizens and ensure that their personal and private rights are secured.”

Do you believe that boys should have access to girls’ locker rooms, showers and bathrooms? President Obama does. His “bathroom mandate” is using Title IX federal funding to force public schools to allow just that.

 Autumn Leva, policy director for Family Policy Alliance, tells us why we’ve formed an unusual alliance to make our voice heard at the U.S. Supreme Court.

Download a copy of the amicus brief as filed with the U.S. Supreme Court.

4th Circuit Bathroom GraphicFamily Policy Alliance is proud to work with nearly 40 state-based family policy councils, including The Family Foundation of Virginia. Victoria Cobb is president of the organization. This op-ed appeared in the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Stephanie is the adoptive mother of two girls who were sexually assaulted, each of whom suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. In a raw and powerful letter addressed to members of the Virginia General Assembly telling her story, she wrote: “A particular risk to my daughters is exposure to the anatomy of the opposite sex. To my daughters, the male anatomy is a weapon by which they were assaulted. But the risk extends to even being in the presence of biological males in situations where my daughters feel vulnerable, such as when they are using the bathroom, changing clothes, or showering.”

Now, according to a federal court, assault victims like her daughters will just have to deal with that horrible fear.

Are we really willing to force sexual assault victims into situations like these?

Even for most adults, preferring to shower or dress in the most private atmosphere possible is completely rational. Remarkably, that natural desire for physical privacy in public restrooms, locker rooms and showers shared by the overwhelming majority of Americans is being attacked as unreasonable, discriminatory — even bigoted. Worse, some are attempting to force our school children into vulnerable interactions with kids of the opposite sex in restrooms, locker rooms and showers, in addition to those who have suffered sexual abuse.

Last week the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals opined that a federal law prohibiting sex discrimination in schools should be interpreted as prohibiting discrimination on the basis of gender identity. Despite erroneous media reports, the court did not mandate that schools immediately require access for students to restrooms of the opposite sex, despite a request by the plaintiff and ACLU for just that. Instead, the case was sent back to the lower court for further proceedings.

Yet for the first time, rather than following the plain language of law, a court concluded that the term “sex” no longer refers to the reality of biological differences between males and females. Rather, it refers to an individual’s subjective and changing feelings of “gender identity.” No other court in the country has come to this conclusion.

More important, as Judge Paul Niemeyer said in his dissent, the decision “overrules custom, culture, and the very demands inherent in human nature for privacy and safety. . . . An individual has a legitimate and important interest in bodily privacy such that his or her nude or partially nude body . . . (is) not exposed to persons of the opposite biological sex. Indeed, courts have consistently recognized that the need for such privacy is inherent in the nature and dignity of humankind.”

The court argues that ignoring the realities of biological sex is necessary because the plaintiff may feel “irreparable harm” at not being able to use the restroom of her choice.

But what about the irreparable harm and humiliation children might feel being exposed to someone of the opposite sex in a locker room or shower? Is their humiliation and discomfort at having their bodies exposed to someone of the opposite sex irrational?

And while the ACLU may argue this case involves only restrooms and not locker rooms and showers, logic dictates — as Judge Niemeyer rightly stated in his dissent — the new definition of sex cannot be compartmentalized and must be applied to showers and locker rooms.

Unfortunately, the court failed to properly consider the vast harms that will result from allowing boys to share private facilities with girls. Students from all walks of life find it deeply humiliating and offensive to be forced to share showers, restrooms and locker rooms with the opposite sex.

For those students, there is no “appropriate use” that justifies the deeply harmful intrusion on their privacy. This is especially true for victims of sexual abuse, which some reports put at 1 out of 10 students under the age of 18, and for whom the very presence of a biological male in a female restroom will trigger psychological and emotional harm.

The privacy rights and safety of vulnerable school children shouldn’t be cast aside or used as a political pawn for special-interest groups that desire to impose a genderless society.

Remarkably, the court seems to have concluded that a single student’s need for public affirmation trumps the desire inherent in human nature for privacy and safety, dismissing even the fear of sexual assault victims. Hopefully, a reasonable court will step in and reaffirm that our children have the dignity of basic privacy rights in bathrooms and showers. Anything short of that will put vulnerable children at tremendous emotional, physical and developmental risk.

Target Email GraphicA federal appeals court ruled in favor of a transgender teen. It’s the first time a court has ruled that the term “sex” no longer applies to the biological differences between men and women, but rather how a person feels about their “gender identity.”

Victoria Cobb is president of The Family Foundation of Virginia, one of Family Policy Alliance’s nearly 40 state-based groups. She says the ruling simply puts women and children at risk.

“Even for most adults, preferring to shower or dress in the most private atmosphere possible is completely rational,” she wrote in an op-ed for the Richmond Times. “Remarkably, that natural desire for physical privacy in public restrooms, locker rooms and showers shared by the overwhelming majority of Americans is being attacked as unreasonable, discriminatory — even bigoted. Worse, some are attempting to force our school children into vulnerable interactions with kids of the opposite sex in restrooms, locker rooms and showers, in addition to those who have suffered sexual abuse.”

Target’s decision to publicly share a long-standing policy allowing men entrance into women’s restrooms and changing rooms brought a chorus of opposition from parents and concerned citizens.

The American Family Association has more than 600,000 signatures on a petition pledging to boycott because of the policy.

“Target’s policy is exactly how sexual predators get access to their victims,” AFA wrote on their website. “And with Target publicly boasting that men can enter women’s bathrooms, where do you think predators are going to go?”

Izzy Avraham talked to his young daughter about Target’s policy and suggested they go to the store and speak to the manager about it.

“We kept talking and I explained to her that we should be kind and loving to everyone,” he said, “because everybody is a person with a heart and feelings. But that you can also disagree with the way they’re acting, and think it’s weird.”

The Avrahams were disappointed with the manager’s response, but thousands of people on Facebook shared his post and used his hashtag, #byetarget.

The Pennsylvania Family Institute, Family Policy Alliance’s allied group in that state, shared a video from Defend My Privacy showing a mom and her daughter cutting up their Target REDCard because of the announcement. The video has gotten thousands of views and shares and continues to make the rounds on social media. You can view it through the link below.

By some estimates, one in 10 women have been the victim of sexual abuse. That leaves them particularly vulnerable to situations that make them feel unsafe. Stephanie, an adoptive mom of two girls in Virginia, says her daughters are at risk because of their abusive background.

“A particular risk to my daughters is exposure to the anatomy of the opposite sex,” she said. “To my daughters, the male anatomy is a weapon by which they were assaulted. But the risk extends to even being in the presence of biological males in situations where my daughters feel vulnerable, such as when they are using the bathroom, changing clothes, or showering.”

Despite the pushback, homosexual activist groups continue to push for bathroom policies that are uncomfortable at best and dangerous at worst.

“The privacy rights and safety of vulnerable school children shouldn’t be cast aside or used as a political pawn for special-interest groups that desire to impose a genderless society,” Cobb wrote. “Hopefully, a reasonable court will step in and reaffirm that our children have the dignity of basic privacy rights in bathrooms and showers. Anything short of that will put vulnerable children at tremendous emotional, physical and developmental risk.”

TAKE ACTION
Sign the petition asking Target to rethink their policy or see less of us in the future!

If you use Twitter, please use the hashtag #iexpectmore in your tweets.
You can see the Defend My Privacy video on our Facebook page.

The privacy and safety of women and children protected

North Carolina lawmakers are protecting the privacy and safety of women and children. They unanimously passed a bill that would prevent men from entering women’s restrooms, locker rooms and showers. The governor has already signed it into law.

This is good news for North Carolina families – and all families – but the need to protect women and children doesn’t stop here. CitizenLink and our family policy alliance are working hard in legislatures across the nation to safeguard families – including yours. But that’s only possible with your support.

Will you partner with CitizenLink today to stop men from using women’s restrooms and allow businesses to operate according to their deeply held beliefs?