This week, Senate Bill 59 was presented in front of the California Senate. The bill requires the state to provide free menstrual products in women’s and men’s bathrooms in all state-owned buildings and other state-supported hospitals, even though men don’t need them. State lawmakers who spoke in favor of the bill, however, don’t recognize this basic fact.
SB 59 “would enact the Menstrual Product Accessibility Act, which would require all women’s restrooms, all all-gender restrooms, and at least one men’s restroom in a building owned by the state,” to be stocked with menstrual products, according to the bill’s text. Unfortunately, SB 59 passed in the Governmental Organization Committee.
CFC Outreach Coordinator, Sophia Lorey, testified in opposition to the bill, and the responses she received were astounding.
Lorey began by stating that the bill pushes the lie that men can have a menstrual cycle. “This is insulting to women. This bill disregards the inherent dignity of women by attempting to obscure obvious biological distinctions between males and females. Males do not and cannot have a menstrual cycle.”
She notes that every month, women endure several unpleasant emotional and physical symptoms from menstruating. To insist that men can simply choose to have the same experience is both absurd and disrespectful.
“To vote Yes on SB 59 is to ignore basic biology. To Vote Yes on SB 59 would be antithetical to women’s rights. SB 59 works to erase the biological truth of what a woman is. To be truly pro-women, it is paramount that we recognize these biological differences between the sexes and act accordingly,” Lorey continued.
In response, Senator Marie Alvarado-Gill said, “we have evolved as a human species, in that we have choice and identity, and we have choice in what we pursue as humans in terms of our essential needs.”
“Essential needs” are not a subjective list of things to be chosen based on personal preference. If every person had “choice in what we pursue as humans in terms of our essential needs,” as Alvarado-Gill suggests, anyone could demand that the government provide them with any item or service.
Alvarado-Gill went on to say that the bill would help “evolve our thinking” and “undo the stigma” associated with transgender “women,” or biological men pretending to be women.
Again, this is fundamentally anti-woman.
Senator Nancy Skinner closed the session saying, “…whether someone menstruates or not is not just a question of what we have come to sort of narrowly define as female biology. In other words, there is great variation biologically in individuals.”
This simply isn’t true. Women share one set of biological characteristics while men share another. For centuries, this is how humans have told the sexes apart. This is basic, indisputable science.
Watch the hearing here.
If lawmakers can’t agree on simple facts, how are they to legislate effectively? The only logical approach is to legislate in accordance with biological realities. Obscuring the very distinct line between men and women will only lead to more disorder, confusion, and injustice.