Woman ejected from restaurant because she looks male

I heard part of something on the radio today about a woman who was thrown out of a restaurant ofter using the women’s restroom because she was mistaken for a male. I didn’t catch whether her entire party was asked to leave, or if she was the only one. Does anyone know what happened? Why couldn’t she just show her ID to show she’s female? Apparently she was on the Today Show today or recently.

Google gave me this:

Oh my word, the comments after that article practically made my eyes bleed.

According to this article in USA Today (with an image of her holding her State ID), she tried to show ID, but they weren’t interested in seeing it.

Did anyone else see that photo and think ‘Choc-lit raaaaaain!’?

I know this is a sensitive issue here, and I’m not really going for a VCO3 style flaming, but if you aren’t participating in societal norms as far as gender identification goes why wouldn’t you just use the bathroom that corresponds to the gender that you are identifiying with?

In other words, if you’re going to look like a guy, why not just use the guys bathroom? Honestly I don’t care who uses what bathroom and when, I’m just curious.

IANA lesbian, but AFAIK lesbians don’t want to ‘be men’. While they may look masculine and enjoy the sexual company of women, they don’t necessarily identify as ‘male’.

I didn’t say that very well, but I hope you know what I mean. Perhaps someone from that community will elaborate.

No, no, I totally get what you’re saying. I’m not some sheltered little thing just in from the hinterlands either, I guess I’ve really never gotten some of the finer points of these lifestyles. Do men who act as women use the mens room or the ladies room?

Heh. I’m not a gay guy either. But AIUI they’re men who happen to be attracted to men. No reason for most of them to wish to use the ladies’ room.

Well, it also works the other way. I would personally be fine with it, but a lot of people don’t want to share a public bathroom with someone who is physically the opposite gender, no matter what they dress like.

Which is just strange. Who cares who’s in there as long as they’re in there to do the same things I am, which is usually take a whiz and buy silly novelty items for $.50 to give your buddies when you get back to the bar.

Sounds to me like the bouncer greatly over-reacted. He could have gone in and asked politely, or at least neutrally, if there was a man using the ladies’ bathroom, and then when the woman said she was female and offered to show ID he should have looked and then apologized for the mixup. End of situation.

She’s lesbian, not pre- or post-op transgendered. She’s a woman with short hair and no makeup, not a woman who (at least based on the information provided) identifies as being of the male sex. I’d say that means she should feel free to use the women’s bathroom.

The headline of the cited article says “Lesbian…” while the body says “The Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, which filed the lawsuit in state court, says Farmer’s case may set an important precedent.”

So is she a female lesbian, or a M>F transgender that still had manly bits? The latter, if seen by other restaurant patrons, might be the cause for the snit.

And I don’t see anywhere in the article where it says she’s anything but a female, period, but the TLD&EF part kind of threw me.

Even if she is transgender, if the driver’s license she displayed has “Female” on it, I can’t see why she was 86’d.

[Austin Powers]

That’s a MAN, baby!


ETA, missed missbunny’s post while I was formulating mine…

I imagine TLD&EF is stepping in for the exact reason that they said they’re stepping in: the case can set an important precedent for actual transgendered peoples’ rights.

A lot of transgender groups do work in support of all people, including non-trans people, who are targeted and oppressed by gender norms.

Also, I know of transgender people who have been targeted for using both the bathroom corresponding to their gender of identification as well as that corresponding to their gender assigned at birth. Access to bathrooms is a major issue for trans people and for all people stigmatized for their gender presentation, such as this woman.

I don’t know what her license is supposed to prove though, it’s not like they verify gender at the DMV, do they?

Yep, lots of transgender groups do work like Matt said.

For argument’s sake, let’s just say she was born male and was transitioning to being female. She went into the women’s bathroom, into a stall. Nobody can see what’s in her pants, or not, in there. She calls herself female. Her ID says she’s female. Even if she’s still got full male genitalia, as far as anyone is able to discern, she calls herself female and her ID says she’s female, and she’s in a closed-off unviewable stall. I don’t see how anyone can complain legitimately about her being in there.

The comments posted after that story really made me sick. I am always so stunned to see such bigotry and ignorance right in front of me, even though I know it exists. I guess sometimes I choose to forget.

OK, I guess I have to step in - finally, I have some experience with something on these boards!

I am a lesbian. I often get mistaken for a male. It doesn’t happen so much when my hair is longer, like now, but when I am sporting a buzz-cut, then, yeah. I am NOT trying to be a man. I am NOT trying to be masculine. I’m very female, in fact, I am so female that I prefer females!

But… I am not going to let society tell me that I have to look a certain way in order to be a female. I like my hair short - I work outdoors and with puppies, and either is easier with a buzz cut. I wear loose-fit clothing and tools, as a part of my job. I’ve never understood why ANYONE wears any makeup, so I’m not going to do it myself. I’m not going to artifically raise my tenor voice. I like my voice! I don’t shave anything - why should I?

The best thing is, my partner loves me just the way I am.

So, why the heck should I have to change myself to make others more comfortable? I actually do this once in a while - I’ll stick out my chest and say something in a slightly higher voice if I see someone do a doubletake in a restroom. It just isn’t worth my while to make others scared or nervous. But, do NOT expect me to do this. It is a courtesy. And please do not ask me to use the men’s room. I don’t like penises! That’s the point!

As for the original instance - the restaurant should fire the bouncer. He was WAY our of line. Boycott the restaurant - they backed him up. And please, don’t make gender assumptions if you can help it.


-Fetch, your local butch.

Color me incredibly confused. I’ve read both of the linked articles, and nowhere in either of them is it even suggested that she is a female who identifies as male, or a female who identifies as male, or transgendered in any way shape or form. I understand why the TLD&EF is getting involved, but why are so many people (and I’m not just referring to the posters here) assuming that it’s a gender identification issue? Did I miss a law that woman are required to appear feminine at all times?

Actually, there used to be such laws: when transvestism was a criminal offence, there were actually laws identifying how many pieces of women’s clothing a woman had to be wearing at all times.

Apparently, certain news site posters would like to see a return to those times.