Doreen Denny: Don't be fooled ladies -- the Equality Act is a threat to all of us

How can people like Ginni Rometty, the first female CEO of IBM, so easily jump on the bandwagon of the so-called Equality Act and fail to see its obvious threats to women?

The Equality Act, which would amend existing federal civil rights laws (including the Civil Rights Act of 1964) to include sexual orientation and gender identity as protected characteristics, seeks to erase the understood binary definition of sex as male or female, and enshrine a new definition of sex that includes a person’s perception of his or herself – not the actual chromosomal DNA that identifies his or her true sex.

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This monumental rewrite of our civil rights laws, which will receive its first hearing before the House Judiciary Committee this week, is being promoted by the activist Human Rights Campaign, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, every member of her Democratic Caucus, and a long list of major U.S. businesses.

The bill would create a world in which women and girls are no longer recognized, protected or dignified as uniquely female. In jobs, education, sports, shelters or any public space, any biological man classifying himself as a woman according to his “gender identity” would have every claim to any women’s program, scholarship, sports roster, competition, boardroom, executive office, women’s shelter, bathroom, locker room or job.

Ponder this. Under the Equality Act, everything women have done and achieved over the last half century to improve opportunities and protections in education, sports, the workplace and society could be overruled by any male claiming “womanhood.”

An employer who wants to cut health care and parental leave costs could choose a transgender person over a woman of child-bearing age and still get credit for the “woman hire.” A college coach could choose to give a scholarship to a transgender athlete over a female athlete knowing the biology of the former gives the team a competitive advantage.

Anyone claiming to be pro-women will have a hard time defending the serious and detrimental impacts that this thoroughly misguided legislation will have on females.

Title IX, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in federally-funded education programs, would be neutered under the Equality Act’s redefinition of sex, no longer guaranteeing equal opportunity for female students in academics or athletics.

Privacy and safety for females in women’s shelters would be cast aside as transgendered people claim rights of entry. This is not hypothetical. Last year, nine homeless women filed a complaint in the U.S. district court in California, alleging that they were sexually harassed and forced to shower with a physically-male person admitted to the women’s shelter. Naomi’s House (the shelter) alleges that federal grant requirements are the reason it could not take action against the transgendered person; the women claim shelter staff threatened to expel them instead of taking action against the alleged harasser.

Safety and privacy protections for girls in school bathrooms and locker rooms would also be entirely erased. Echoes of a kindergarten girl’s alleged sexual assault by a “gender fluid’ male student in a school bathroom in Georgia rings loudly here.

The case of Doe v. Boyertown Area School District, pending before the Supreme Court, challenges whether a public school has a compelling interest to authorize trans-student use of restrooms and locker rooms according to their chosen sex. But under the Equality Act, cases seeking to protect women and girls in public restrooms and places of refuge could be automatically thrown out. Any man or boy identifying as a woman or girl has an unchallengeable claim to trump her privacy and safety.

The left’s rejection of these consequences to women and girls is a massive blind spot. It turns a blind eye to the unequivocal, inherent conflict between women’s rights and transgender people’s demands.

Groups claiming that they speak for women and girls, including the National Organization for Women and the Women’s Sports Foundation founded by Billie Jean King, are joining the altar call of the transactivist movement and turning their backs on women. Tragically, so are the mainstream media, major business groups and female CEOs.

Some liberal activists, like the Women’s Liberation Front, who are “unapologetically radical feminists, dedicated to the total liberation of women,” are calling them out and being ostracized by the left.

Redefining sex in federal civil rights laws to include gender perceptions totally denies the scientific, chromosomal fact that a male, no matter how many hormonal injections or surgical alterations, can never become female, menstruate or bear children. The left’s push for the Equality Act completely denies science.

It’s time to get honest about the real impact of the Equality Act, which proposes a seismic societal shift in the way we view civil rights.

Elevating perception above biological fact as the basis for civil rights protections undermines the very foundations of our civil rights laws prohibiting discrimination based on undeniable, unchangeable traits. It is ultimately repressive and will be destructive to the decades of progress women and girls have achieved over the last half century.

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It’s time for Ginni Rometty and others to wake up to the Equality Act’s detrimental effects on women and rethink their support of House Speaker Pelosi and the Democratic Party’s signature civil rights bill. Anyone claiming to be pro-women will have a hard time defending the serious and detrimental impacts that this thoroughly misguided legislation will have on females.

Don’t be fooled, ladies. These radical leftists are not standing for women in their support for the Equality Act. Decades of progress to promote opportunities for women and girls, our daughters and granddaughters, are on the line and in danger of being erased.