President Obama: ‘I’m not the one making an issue of transgender bathrooms’
President Obama has said he’s not the one making a big deal over transgender bathrooms.
The President was holding a town hall meeting in Indiana when he was asked why he is making a “big deal” of bathrooms in public schools.
Arvis Dawson asked Mr Obama, “of all the pressing issues you have before you right now, why is the issue of which bathroom a person uses such an issue?”
The man added he was a strong believer in equal rights, but his religion gave him pause.
The President responded by saying he was not “the one making a big issue of it.”
“Schools are asking for guidance about how to handle transgender students,” Obama said.
“Somehow people think I made it an issue. I didn’t make it an issue.
“There are a lot of things that are more pressing, you’re absolutely right. “We should deal with this issue the same way we’d want it dealt with if it was our child, and that is to try to create an environment of some dignity and kindness for these kids.
“And that’s sort of the bottom line. I have to just say what’s in my heart, but I also have to look at what’s the law.”
Adding that he considered his own faith when making his decision, the President added: “My reading of scripture tells me that the ‘Golden Rule’ is pretty high up there.
“In terms of my Christian belief, that doesn’t mean that somebody else has to interpret it the same way. That does mean as President of the United States, those are the values I think are important.”
The Daily Mail reported that Mr Obama said the policy will eventually be set by the courts.
“It’s not like I woke up one day and I said, ‘Man, you know what we really need to do, is let’s start working on high school bathrooms.’ I was thinking about ISIL, and I was thinking about the economy and I’m thinking about jobs.”
Recently, a US court refused to hear an appeal from a school wanting to ban a trans student from the male bathroom. It was the first time the court had interpreted sex discrimination laws to include trans people.