She filmed a trans woman in a restroom and complained about privacy but didn't see the irony.

"You're invading my privacy!" yelled the woman as she live-streamed video of another woman behind a bathroom stall door to her Facebook page.

Jazmina Saavedra, a Republican candidate for Congress in California's 44th district, paced outside the women's restroom at a Los Angeles Denny's. She shouted into the restroom, telling the occupant to get out.

The problem? The woman using the restroom was, Saavedra believed, transgender.


The video is uncomfortable to watch, with the restaurant's manager siding with Saavedra's open discussion of her willingness to attack the woman with pepper spray.

"I was with my pepper spray ready and I called the manager so he helped me," she said in the video. "How can I be with a man inside of the ladies' room just because he thinks he's a lady? This is unbelievable. Only in California this happens."

When asked for comment, Denny's said management received a complaint that led to manager entering the bathroom. "We are extremely disturbed by the incident that took place at our Los Angeles restaurant this week. At Denny's, we do not tolerate discrimination of any kind, inclusive of gender identity and sexual orientation," they added.

This is an unbelievably horrible incident, and unfortunately, incidents like it happen all the time. And it just needs to stop.

I am a transgender woman. Like most women, I use the women's restroom. It's not some luxury or something I do for fun. If it were up to me, I'd never use a public restroom at all — but when you've gotta go, you've gotta go.

I am sick of seeing stories like this. I am sick of seeing the actual invasion of someone's privacy taking a backseat to some hypothetical situation where a trans woman does the exact same thing this lady is doing to her.

I'm sick of it all, and I'm not alone. The National Center for Transgender Equality's 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey found that 59% of trans Americans avoided using a public restroom in the prior year for fear of harassment. About 32% ate and drank less to reduce the odds that they'd have to use a restroom, 12% were verbally harassed in one, and 9% were denied access altogether.

Nobody should have to worry about being harassed simply for existing in public, but that's what transgender people face every day.

Anti-trans policies have been popping up in recent years, and they're making things worse — for everybody.

One of the common arguments against allowing trans people to use the bathroom of their identified gender is that women don't want to share a restroom with a "man" (though trans women are not men). The truth, however, is that if trans people are legally obligated to use the bathroom of the gender they were assigned at birth, it's actually more likely to result in situations where women do have to share restrooms with men.

A trans man named Michael Hughes conducted an experiment a few years back to make a point about how out of place it'd be for him to use the women's restroom. Bearded and muscular, the reaction most women would have to seeing him in the restroom would likely be something along the lines of "Eeeee! A man!"

Since the start of the conservative push to legislate bathroom access, a number of cisgender (non-trans) women have been harassed in women's restrooms for looking too masculine. Jessie Meehan isn't trans, but in 2017, she was harassed by a Walgreens employee for trying to use the women's restroom. Apparently, she looked too masculine for their taste.

Her story, documented in the video below, shows the kind of collateral damage of the push to police restroom use, reinforcing how feminine a woman "should" look or how masculine a man "should" look.

Anti-trans policies reinforce gender stereotypes that hurt us all.

Factoring in that the only way to actually enforce policies designed to restrict trans people from using the restroom is for all people to be subjected to invasive genital checks before entering, the entire argument about "privacy" becomes absurd. In fact, the "privacy" argument has always been absurd, often involving wild hypotheticals or some sort of misguided notion of what actually happens in restrooms.

If you are in a women's restroom and you're seeing someone else's genitals, you might be using the restroom horribly wrong. That's got nothing to do with trans people.

Yes, assaults happen in restrooms. However — and this is important — the culprits tend to be cis men, not trans women, who have never argued that they should be allowed to assault people by pretending to be transgender. Assault and voyeurism in public restrooms will always be against the law, no matter whether there's a policy for or against trans people.

If the argument becomes "Well, criminals don't obey the laws, anyway," then it's time to stop pretending that rules and laws banning trans people from public spaces will have any effect on safety or privacy. After all, the only thing "preventing" people from walking into any restroom they want right now is a little plastic sign with a stick figure in a dress.

I care about restroom privacy, and if you do too, you should rebuke people like Saavedra.

Demanding to know whether or not someone is trans before they use a restroom is an invasion of privacy. Requiring trans people to out themselves as such in a public place to around a group of strangers is an invasion of privacy. Filming someone in the bathroom, posting it to Facebook, and then trying to fundraise off of the event is an invasion of privacy.

Take a stand for privacy and just let people pee in peace.

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash
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Glenda moved to Houston from Ohio just before the pandemic hit. She didn't know that COVID-19-related delays would make it difficult to get her Texas driver's license and apply for unemployment benefits. She quickly found herself in an impossible situation — stranded in a strange place without money for food, gas, or a job to provide what she needed.

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For nearly 30 years, Bread of Life has been at the forefront of HIV/AIDS prevention, eliminating food insecurity, providing permanent housing to formerly homeless individuals and disaster relief.

Glenda sat in her car for 20 minutes outside of the building, trying to muster up the courage to get out and ask for help. She'd never been in this situation before, and she was terrified.

When she finally got out, she encountered Eva Thibaudeau, who happened to be walking down the street at the exact same time. Thibaudeau is the CEO of Temenos CDC, a nonprofit multi-unit housing development also founded by the Rasmuses, with a mission to serve Midtown Houston's homeless population.

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I remember being baffled that so many people were so convinced of Clinton's evil schemes that they genuinely saw the documented serial liar and cheat that she was running against as the lesser of two evils. I mean, sure, if you believe that a career politician had spent years being paid off by powerful people and was trafficking children to suck their blood in her free time, just about anything looks like a better alternative.

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It's been four years and Hillary Clinton has been found guilty of exactly none of the criminal activity she was being accused of. Trump spent every campaign rally leading chants of "Lock her up!" under the guise that she was going to go to jail after the election. He's been president for nearly four years now, and where is Clinton? Not in jail—she's comfy at home, occasionally trolling Trump on Twitter and doing podcasts.

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Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash
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Glenda moved to Houston from Ohio just before the pandemic hit. She didn't know that COVID-19-related delays would make it difficult to get her Texas driver's license and apply for unemployment benefits. She quickly found herself in an impossible situation — stranded in a strange place without money for food, gas, or a job to provide what she needed.

Alone, hungry, and scared, Glenda dialed 2-1-1 for help. The person on the other end of the line directed her to the Houston-based nonprofit Bread of Life, founded by St. John's United Methodist pastors Rudy and Juanita Rasmus.

For nearly 30 years, Bread of Life has been at the forefront of HIV/AIDS prevention, eliminating food insecurity, providing permanent housing to formerly homeless individuals and disaster relief.

Glenda sat in her car for 20 minutes outside of the building, trying to muster up the courage to get out and ask for help. She'd never been in this situation before, and she was terrified.

When she finally got out, she encountered Eva Thibaudeau, who happened to be walking down the street at the exact same time. Thibaudeau is the CEO of Temenos CDC, a nonprofit multi-unit housing development also founded by the Rasmuses, with a mission to serve Midtown Houston's homeless population.

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via Jody Danielle Fisher / Facebook

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With the election quickly approaching, the importance of voting and sending in your ballot on time is essential. But there is another way you can vote everyday - by being intentional with each dollar you spend. Support companies and products that uphold your values and help create a more sustainable world. An easy move is swapping out everyday items that are often thrown away after one use or improperly disposed of.

Package Free Shop has created products to help fight climate change one cotton swab at a time! Founded by Lauren Singer, otherwise known as, "the girl with the jar" (she initially went viral for fitting 8 years of all of the waste she's created in one mason jar). Package Free is an ecosystem of brands on a mission to make the world less trashy.

Here are eight of our favorite everyday swaps:

1. Friendsheep Dryer Balls - Replace traditional dryer sheets with these dryer balls that are made without chemicals and conserve energy. Not only do these also reduce dry time by 20% but they're so cute and come in an assortment of patterns!

Package Free Shop

2. Last Swab - Replacement for single use plastic cotton swabs. Nearly 25.5 billion single use swabs are produced and discarded every year in the U.S., but not this one. It lasts up to 1,000 uses as it's able to be cleaned with soap and water. It also comes in a biodegradable, corn based case so you can use it on the go!

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