Magician Debunks Trans Bathroom Controversies

Justin Willman has a message for parents who are worried that the whole “Trans people use bathrooms, too!” issue is simply too complex for their children to deal with: It’s just not that hard. In fact, in a recent video, the comedian and magician debunks the entire transgender bathroom argument in the space of about two minutes. It turns out that all you need to show that anti-trans bathroom bills are ridiculous is some peanut butter and jelly.

Anti-trans bathroom bills got a lot of press during the spring, as states including South Dakota and Tennessee attempted to pass bills requiring that people use the bathrooms that coincide with the gender they were assigned at birth. North Carolina actually succeeded in passing such a law, known as HB2, in March. (In addition to forcing trans people to use bathrooms that don’t align with their gender identities, HB2 also banned cities from enacting anti-discrimination laws to protect the rights of LGBT people, so it’s a rotten law all around). The law sparked nationwide outrage, Department of Justice deemed it violation of federal law, and only two weeks ago, the NBA moved the All-Star game out of North Carolina in response to “the climate created by HB2.”

With all of the political and global upheaval that has characterized the summer of 2016, the controversy surrounding anti-trans bathroom bills seems to have taken a bit of a back seat. However, it’s important to know that these laws have not gone away — in fact, only a couple weeks ago, the Republican National Convention adopted a platform that explicitly supports anti-trans bathroom bills. The rights and safety of trans people are still very much at risk.

In this video, Justin Willman demonstrates just why these laws are ridiculous and wrong. He uses the beloved PB and J as a simple metaphor for what “transgender” means. He starts by explaining that peanut butter goes in a canister labeled “PB,” and jelly goes in a canister labeled “J.” Simple, right? But what if a peanut butter jar actually has jelly in it? And what if a jelly jar actually is filled with peanut butter? I mean, if there's peanut butter in the jar, it's still peanut butter, no matter what the container looks like, right?

“I guess it doesn’t matter what it says on the jar,” Willman says. “If it’s got peanut butter in it, we should just show it some goddamn respect and call it peanut butter.”

Willman sums up the whole issue nicely: “If it’s peanut butter, let it pee with peanut butter! And if it’s jelly, let it pee with jelly.” What’s so hard about that? Watch the full video, above.

Images: YouTube (3)