Editorial: A solution in search of a problem

Staff Reports • Updated Mar 10, 2017 at 4:00 PM

When Donald Trump became president of the United States, one of his early actions was to revoke federal guidance to public schools to allow transgender students to use the bathroom of their choice. 

His logic was that the states and public school officials should have the authority to make their own decisions regarding transgender students and their access to restrooms and locker rooms.

At the state level, Rep. Mark Pody and Sen. Mae Beavers introduced a bill in the legislature that would require students in state high schools and colleges to use restrooms and locker room facilities that align with the sex indicated on the student’s original birth certificate. Pody, however, pulled the bill Tuesday prior to it reaching subcommittee. 

“Never, however, have I gone through a bill – in the years I’ve been up here – and seen an administration changing, courts changing and so many things changing so quickly. It’s almost week to week and, in fact, things changed this week,” Pody said. 

Pody took the bill off notice, which means it could make its way back this legislative session. 

At the local level, Wilson County Director of Schools Donna Wright has said, “It’s not an issue for us. We take care of our kids.” 

She points out that the district is sensitive to the needs of the students, as well as their parents and guardians, and said she was surprised the bill was reintroduced this year.

We believe the local officials are best at knowing what needs to be done in their communities. We applaud Wright for her sensible policies that make this a non-issue in Wilson County. 

With that in mind, we thank Pody for his decision to pull the bill from consideration. Pody said he wanted to create a bill that was common sense and good for everybody and indicated he planned to reintroduce the bill when the language is appropriate. Should he feel the need to reintroduce the bill at some point, it seems to make sense that the school district he represents should be consulted and should agree with the path forward.

We all want what’s best for our community, and we typically get that when we work together.

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