Oh Fuck. No.

ND Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem

ND Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem

Oh, look, I get to hang my head in shame now, along with a lot of other people. Fuck.

North Dakota Republican Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem said Friday morning he will file a lawsuit against the federal government over transgender bathroom policies.

Stenehjem said he is working to bring together a “coalition” of attorneys general to file a lawsuit next week in the Eighth Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals, which includes North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri and Arkansas. Officials from 11 states, led by Texas, took legal action this week over the Obama administration directing public schools to allow transgender students to use the bathroom that aligns with their gender identities.

Stenehjem said the lawsuit he’s bringing is “basically the same” as the one brought by the other states.


Kylie Oversen, chairwoman of the North Dakota Democratic-NPL Party, said it was “disappointing to see Stenehjem’s response to this directive.”

“Whether it’s at the workplace, in housing, the voting booth, or public spaces, discrimination in all forms is flat out wrong,” she said in an email.

State Rep. Marvin Nelson, the Democratic candidate for North Dakota governor, was also critical of Stenehjem’s decision. He said transgender people are probably the least likely to want to “create an issue in the bathroom.”

“I don’t know why the state of North Dakota would be spending money on this lawsuit,” Nelson said, adding other states have already taken legal action.

Via Inforum, full story here.

Stenehjem isn’t joining the existing lawsuit against the government, he’s writing up his own, but says it will mirror what other states are doing.

That statement welcomed from the North Dakota School Board Association.

“This will give courts the opportunity to really consider the legitimacy of the Obama Administration’s directive,” says Jon Martinson, who is a part of the School Board Association.

The School board association says Obama’s proposal isn’t specific enough on who is a transgender child.

“A simple declaration that now on Wednesday, I’m a female, I’m declaring myself a female, although genetically and biologically I’m a male, and I want to be able to use now the women’s bathroom and the women’s locker room, is not going to fly,” said Martinson.


“Children and their education shouldn’t be politicized like this,” says Kristen Benson, Family Therapist

Benson says she often hears horror stories about life for those in the transgender community.

“She was a transgender child and she was so scared to use the restroom and didn’t feel like they didn’t have the support at school, so they didn’t eat or drink anything while at school. Because that is how they could avoid this issue, and no child should have to do that,” says Benson.


A debate of a political or lived experience, that will take months and money to fight.

“It’s a travesty that we are wasting time, energy and money to prevent children from using the restroom when there are children in this state who aren’t eating,” said Benson.

Via WDAY6, full story here.

Going back to the Inforum article for a moment, I took part in their poll:



  1. Siobhan says

    While it’s great that 67% of respondents to the aforementioned poll think this is ridiculous, it’s important to bear in mind nearly 32% of them support this. That is way, way past any “oh bigotry is rare anyways so you won’t have a problem” level. 32 frackin’ percent. Basically one-third. Jesus H Christ.

  2. says


    That is way, way past any “oh bigotry is rare anyways so you won’t have a problem” level. 32 frackin’ percent. Basically one-third. Jesus H Christ.

    Oh, it’s worse than that. While some percentage of that 67% will be people who are supportive of GLBT rights, it’s likely to be small. Most of it will be North Dakota Practical, people who think it’s ridiculous to waste time and money when you have other states wasting time and money for you.

  3. says

    I am cautiously hopeful, actually. To me, this anti-LGBT maneuver seems like a poker player going “all in” on a final hand. Obergefell V Hodges has had an impact comparable to Roe V Wade; the haters could be setting themselves up for their very own waterloo. It’s going to take a while, though. In the meantime -- not that I am trying to be dismissive -- it’s got huge enforcement issues (which is really the point of the whole thing) and the haters aren’t standing up bathroom police units. If I ever see a bathroom cop, they’d better be armed or I’m going to hold their head in the wrong gender’s toilet for a few minutes to encourage them to be more understanding.

  4. lorn says

    I wonder what Wayne Stenehjem would say if someone praised him for his strong pro-homosexual hook-up culture stance in enforcing anti-trans legislation?

    You see, taken from a slightly different angle the demand that everyone go to the bathroom facilities indicated on their birth certificate could be interpreted as demanding gay folk stay in the bathrooms indicated for use by their preferred sexual partners. I’m sure this thought will be a great comfort when mister Wayne Stenehjem disrobes knowing full well that he voted to eliminate any opportunity for any homosexuals to go to a less potential-partner-rich environment. Does Wayne Stenehjem enjoy being ogled? Ohhhh … Wayne … you are such a tease.

    This is, of course, intended to highlight the absurdity of the anti-trans law. It is not intended to claim or imply that homosexuals are any more likely to want to do anything more in a bathroom than handle their business with some measure of privacy and dignity, and get out. Straight, gay, cis, or trans (for that matter, everyone in between); everyone needs a place to pee. Wayne and his ilk need to focus on handling their business and stop worrying about what people have between their legs.

    If and when something abusive or exploitative does happen please, do us all a favor, and call a cop. That sort of thing was illegal before the anti-trans law.

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