If a transgender girl in Minnesota wants her school to affirm her identity, a new bill introduced last week in the state would charge her with a misdemeanor and levy a fine instead.
Them. fills in the details on the bill:
After more than 20 states introduced anti-trans sports bills in 2021, Minnesota’s HF 1657 ups the ante by levying legal penalties against transgender girls who participate on sports teams in alignment with their gender identity. According to text of the bill introduced in the state House of Representatives on Friday, any trans female student who “participates on a female-only team is guilty of a petty misdemeanor.”
Transgender kids who want to play sports could be subject to fines of up to $300 in the state. It doesn’t stop with fines, though.
If a transgender girl attempts to use the bathroom or locker room that corresponds with her gender identity, the bill introduced by Republican Rep. Eric Lucero of Dayton would charge her with a misdemeanor crime. They may also face jail time and further fines. Them. notes that adults charged with this kind of misdemeanor in Minnesota can receive 90 days in jail and $1,000 penalties, though it is unclear what the exact punishments would be for these students.
With transgender youth already overrepresented in juvenile detention centers, this would criminalize their existence more.
Lucero hasn’t spoken in public about his bill. No rationales, no arguments.
Further complicating the case for Lucero’s bill—which, again, he won’t even defend himself in public—is that it goes blatantly against Minnesota’s existing laws.
Telling them, “You’re a lying criminal,” is basically the worst possible way to treat a transgender child.
Why? Let Human Rights Campaign explain:
Gender identity and expression are central to the way we see ourselves and engage in the world around us. This is certainly true of transgender and gender-expansive children and teens, for whom family support is absolutely critical.
Nobody gets to tell kids they aren’t allowed to be themselves. Which is exactly what this bill intends. It would mean that transgender kids can’t be themselves in public, at school, on the field, in the bathroom stall—anywhere. In fact, it would make it a crime.
This intentional cruelty, which stands vanishingly little chance of becoming actual law, won’t help anyone.