SJB: Public Restrooms are Sexist!

[..] For as long as I can remember, I’ve been lining up to use the loo. At weddings, festivals, gigs, sports; any large public event with gender-specific toilets, and the women’s line will snake around the block. “What do you ladies DO in there,” you’ll sometimes hear Dwayne from accounts chuckle. “You take FOREVER.”

Contrary to commonly held belief, we are not gushing over the guy at the bar or swapping lipstick tips (though this sometimes happens, too.) What we’re mostly doing is what we came to do; pee.

Ok, women use the bathroom more than men. Got it.

At Auckland Round the Bays last year, the line for the women’s toilets in Britomart looped around for about 30 metres. There was no queue for the mens. I stood in line for around ten minutes, watching as man after man sauntered in and out. With just minutes until the race’s start, I commit the ultimate act of transgression; ducking out of the line, I raced into the men’s loos and helped myself to a cubicle.

And you know what? I’m not even sorry.

How is it fair that women are expected to line up for a public restroom, while men are not? It’s tiring and boring, not just for that woman but for anyone who is with her. We assume that’s just how it is, or that those exotic female creatures take longer to fluff up their skirts or powder their eyebrows, or that taking a whiz while sitting down must be more time-consuming.

Public restrooms are sexist.

I have raised this with friends. “What, so you think they were purposefully designed to be sexist?” one guy asked. No, I do not think they were purposefully designed that way, much as I don’t think boys were designed to like the colour blue, or girls to covet princesses. I think whoever is designing them has never had women in mind.

And it hasn’t always been this way. Bathroom segregation only began in Victorian times, with the idea that women’s virtue had to be protected, and that their real place was at home with the children. Before that, we all peed in the same place.

With increasing recognition of LGBT rights, unisex restrooms in New Zealand are becoming more common. Auckland University of Technology’s all-gender toilets pave a way for a future where your biological sex doesn’t dictate where you go loo, or how long you have to wait.

So let me get this straight (no pun intended, heh). The solution to “sexist” women’s restrooms is to allow men to use them? Or to look at it another way, to allow women to use men’s restrooms so us guys have to wait the length of an Academy Award-winning Best Picture to take a dump? I don’t know about anyone else but I kind of like the idea that I can use a restroom without having to worry about someone of the opposite sex being in there and I’m sure plenty of women feel the same way about men being in their restroom.

Imagine that – a time where everyone’s bodies are recognised as equal.[…]

And here the writer gives herself and her Cultural Marxist politics away. This is not about sexist restrooms but about men and women being recognised as being the same apart from some different plumbing and bits. The end game here is not gender equality. The end game is gender neutrality.

– Stuff


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