A recent slate of laws that target trans and gender-nonconforming people for using public bathrooms that match their gender identities have come up for debate in several U.S. states — and those in favor of the anti-trans legislation have used the defense that they are necessary measures to "protect" children from "predators." But the anti-trans panic is a pretty weak defense, as Jessica Williams pointed out Wednesday in a Daily Show segment.
In an interview with Colorado state representative and chaplain Gordon James Klingenschmitt, who has been vocal about his anti-LGBT views, Williams asked him what was so scary about trans people using the bathrooms they feel safe and comfortable in. "They not only want to be confused about their own identity," he said, "but they want the rest of us to be confused with them. Now they want the government to join them in that pretense? They're making us into liars."
As some members of the trans community helpfully pointed out to Williams in the same segment, Klingenschmitt's accusations of "lying" rely on harmful stereotypes that transgender people are somehow trying to "trick" everyone with their gender identity.
But Klingenschmitt seems insistent that trans people are somehow dangerous, saying trans people are "labeling" themselves as transgender so they can get the "access" to "violate others," and he even pulls out some Bible quotes to back up his anti-trans sentiments.
That's when Williams flips the stereotypes around on Klingenschmitt, asking him "Is it fair to say that because you're a priest that you're a pedophile?" When he says "of course not," she presses him on it. "Because some people are criminals and some people are not criminals," Klingenschmitt says. Um, yeah ... so you're saying that the we shouldn't make broad generalizations about people? Nice one, Klingenschmitt.