Are Gendered Bathrooms Harming Us?

Well now, I think this is a subject worth studying. One thing we know for sure, is that the actions, looks, sounds, and everything else about an outsider are exemplified. An outsider is a person who is mingling with a group in which (s)he is not a part.

For example, in an international student exchange program, let’s say a Japanese girl and a Caucasian American girl swap families, both of these girls would be considered outsiders to the cultures they now find themselves in.

Let’s assume that the Caucasian family is in a rural white neighborhood. The Japanese girl will surely be noticed more than the average girl in town. She’ll have different color skin, different facial features, different hair, other bodily characteristics, an accent, different movements, and many other things that people will pick up on.

All of these features are exemplified because she is not part of the in group, in this case, the local culture.

What does this have to do with bathrooms? Well, if all of this happens naturally, what are we doing by trying to force the idea that men and women are different by segregating bathrooms?

Why is this accepted anyway? If I had a store and made a special bathroom for black men, surely there would be outrage, yet when it comes to this, a very similar form of segregation, we are okay with it.

By having segregated bathrooms, we are explicitly trying to tell our society that men and women are so different, that we cannot even share a bathroom. We are so different, in fact, that even if it is a one person bathroom with a lock, we often still label it as being only for a man or only for a woman. How silly is this?

Yet, at the same time, we try to force the notion that every career should have a near 50/50 split in regards to gender. In the tech industry specifically, there is an incredible amount of push to try to close the gender gap. Why? If we think men and women cannot manage to use the same toilet, why do we seem to think that men and women have an equal interest in career choices?

I’m not trying to advocate that we ignore workplace discrimination, that is a real problem that needs to be dealt with when it occurs, but when we advocate things such as trying to push more women into tech, we are not only discriminating against men, as it would be suicide to prefer a man over a women if that company doesn’t have enough women, but this also discriminates against women. To prefer a women solely for the fact that she is a she, is insulting.

This, of course, raises further questions such as, “Why are all women companies celebrated?” and “Why are all men companies condemned for not being diverse enough?”

Why are women support groups considered bastions of heavenly goodness and men support groups considered bastions of ultimate horror?

When we discuss differences between men and women, except when it comes to differences in learning (finally, thank you), it is savagely attacked as some sort of sexism. To suggest that men and women are simply different when it comes to common desires, which could certainly be innate or in relation to their primary culture, should not be attacked.

Perhaps we should stop trying to force the idea that men and women are equal in every way. Perhaps we should stop trying to force the idea that men and women are different in ways in which we are clearly not. Perhaps we should stop trying to force the idea that men and women areĀ outsiders to each other. Perhaps we could start by freeing the bathroom.

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