To pee or not to pee?

Claire Boysen, opinions writer

You raise your hand and ask if you may use the restroom. The teacher says “sure”, so you get up and walk to the hallway. And that’s when you realize, you must make a choice: women’s or men’s. Which will you choose? Or, like some students at KHS, is it neither?

With people identifying as a gender besides female or male, a question to ask is, “Where does everyone else go to the bathroom?” At KHS, there are four ‘unisex’ or ‘gender-neutral’ bathrooms, one of which is the nurse’s bathroom and the other one being a family bathroom. According to Dr. Michael Havener, principal, they were created to ensure every student feels safe when choosing which restroom to use.

Bathrooms are an important part of making sure that people who identify without a gender feel accepted and welcomed into our school. It also shows that at KHS we’re a community who strives to make sure everyone at this school can feel comfortable with themselves and that we are willing to embrace diversity. Without the gender-neutral bathrooms, KHS would be creating the notion that those who use non-gender specific bathrooms don’t deserve to feel safe and comfortable with who they are and where they use the restroom.

Though 68% (148/219) of students think the gender neutral bathrooms are important, there are always students who don’t. I would suspect students who are against gender-neutral bathrooms are against them because of their own personal beliefs. However, according to one student, gender-neutral bathrooms are a bad thing. Not only do they provide a false notion that there are more than two genders, but it also makes it harder for students who are transgender to feel comfortable in their gender.

While I believe in more than two genders, the gender-neutral bathrooms could be seen as a barrier for people who are transgender wanting to conform with a specific gender identity. But in order for us to protect trans people using non-unisex bathrooms, we need to create enforced policies. Even with stricter codes, we all know bullying and harassment goes unseen, even when it’s not about gender identity.

Though the gender neutral bathrooms are a step in the right direction, those who would rather use the women’s or men’s bathroom should be able to in the future without the fear of harassment; the question of which bathroom to use should no longer be difficult to answer.