Conservative Californians opposed to the state’s equal access laws for transgender students have been caught fabricating a second story about restroom harassment on school grounds. Think Progress reported that blogger Cristan Williams revealed that the group Salt and Light Ministry made up from whole cloth a story about a trans girl harassing other female students in a Los Angeles public school bathroom.
Salt and Light Ministry — a division of Calvary Chapel Bible Fellowship in Temecula, California — is a partner in the conservative coalition determined to invalidate California’s Assembly Bill 1266, which was signed into law in August. The law stipulates that transgender students cannot be forced by school or other officials to use sex segregated facilities — like bathrooms or locker rooms — that do not correspond to their expressed gender.
The coalition of anti-LGBT groups is pushing a referendum called “Privacy for All Students” that aims to invalidate A.B. 1266. Williams — who is transgender — pointed out in her post that the alliance is deploying false, transphobic smears in an attempt to trump the anti-discrimination law.
First came the story of a transgender girl harassing students in a girls’ bathroom in Colorado. That canard was propagated by the Pacific Justice Institute, an anti-LGBT group that the Southern Poverty Law Center lists among its roster of hate groups.
The Colorado story was summarily debunked by Williams, who has now moved on to fact-checking Salt and Light leader Dran Reese and the bouquet of falsehoods she presented to Michael Chen of San Diego’s Channel 10 News.
“Reese pointed out a recent case in which a Los Angeles-area high school student complained to her school that a transgender boy harassed her and peeked at girls over the stalls,” wrote Chen, who declined to contact the students involved, their school or the L.A. County School District. “The girl’s family hired an attorney, but has yet to file a lawsuit,” he parroted.
Williams contacted the school district and found that no such incident had been reported.
“They did get the complaint,” a spokesperson for the school district said, “and it turned out that it was fabricated by one of the parents who opposes transgender students in schools. So it was an unfortunate situation, to have to put the students through, but it was fabricated.”
Listen to Cristan Williams’ call to the school district, embedded below via Soundcloud:
[image of Cristan Williams via transadvocate.com]