NEW YORK — The Democratic mayor of New York City has launched a citywide ad campaign in recognition of “LGBT Pride Month” that touts the city’s policy requiring that citizens be permitted to use the restroom that correlates with their “gender identity.”
Mayor Bill De Blasio and the New York City Commission on Human Rights announced the campaign on Monday, which will include print ads and videos that will appear on subway cars, bus shelters, phone booths, and in newspapers and various social media placements.
“Use the restroom consistent with who you are,” the ads read, featuring photographs of transgendered residents. “Look past pink and blue.”
The advertisements also advise, “In NYC, it’s the law. No questions asked.”
“New York City has long been a leader in the fight for LGBTQ equality, and these ads are further evidence of the City’s unwavering support of our diverse communities,” De Blasio said in a statement. “While other cities and states are legislating intolerance and taking away individuals’ right to use bathrooms consistent with their gender identity, we are proudly standing with our transgender and gender non-conforming New Yorkers.”
As previously reported, De Blasio signed an executive order in March that allows men who identify as women and vice versa to use city-owned restroom facilities and locker rooms in accordance with their preferred identity. It applies to both transgender and “gender non-conforming” persons, the latter of whom are defined as those “who do not follow other people’s ideas or stereotypes about how they should look or act based on the female or male sex they were assigned at birth.”
In December, the New York City Commission on Human Rights also announced new guidelines under the city’s Human Rights Law that imposes fines on employers who use masculine pronouns for male workers who wish to identify as women and vice versa.
Its interpretive guide includes a prohibition on “[i]ntentionally failing to use an individual’s preferred name, pronoun or title,” such as “repeatedly calling a transgender woman ‘him’ or ‘Mr.’ when she has made it clear that she prefers female pronouns and a female title.”
The guidelines further state that employers “should not limit the options for identification to male and female only,” as “[s]ome transgender and gender non-conforming people prefer to use pronouns other than he/him/his or she/her/hers, such as they/them/theirs or ze/hir.”
Violations could result in penalties up to $125,000 and up to $250,000 for transgressions of the law that are considered to be “willfull, wanton or malicious conduct.”
But not everyone is supportive of the national push to allow men in women’s restrooms and vice versa. In his blog “America, Look Up,” Pastor Bryan Ridenour commented on the Obama administration’s recent mandate that public schools allow students to use the restroom that correlates with their “gender identity.”
He pointed to Scripture’s exhortation in 2 Timothy 2:22, which reads, “Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.”
“Instead of fleeing evil, our world chases after it like a moth to a flame,” Ridenour wrote. “Opening the door of our bathrooms and locker rooms to all genders or gender identities opens another Pandora’s Box in our already sin sick world.”