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Why You Should Vote YES on 3 in MA

A week from today, on Tuesday, November 6, the country is heading to the polls to cast their votes in the Midterm Election. If you’re a Massachusetts voter, the national and state offices up for election are not the only important things on the ballot – there are also 3 referendums. Referendums are ballot questions that allow the entire electorate to vote on whether or not to pass or keep a law.

Question 3 on the Massachusetts ballot is asking voters whether or not they want to keep the state law, passed in 2016, that protects transgender people from discrimination in public places, which includes stores, restaurants, doctors’ offices, etc. A “yes” on Question 3 keeps the law in place as is. Read the full question here.

Besides being a decent person who believes transgender people are equal to cisgender people, here are a couple of reasons why you should vote YES on 3…

1. Trans people are people too.

Credit: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Trans people simply do not feel comfortable with the body parts they were born with – that doesn’t make them any less of a person. Our society’s perceptions of gender and gender roles are changing and we cannot just ignore transgender people. A 2016 study by The Williams Institute estimated there to be 29,900 transgender adults living in Massachusetts. Also, you don’t need to fully understand or relate to transgender people to protect them.

2. It’s about more than just bathrooms.

Credit: freedomforallamericans.org

Although transgender protection laws are often referred to as “bathroom bills,” the MA law covers all places of public accommodation. This includes hotels, restaurants, stores, banks, theaters, hospitals, sports facilities, and so much more. Remember when we learned in history class that it was legal for African Americans to be discriminated against in public places? Be on the right side of history by voting YES on 3.

3. The law is not a threat to women & children.

Credit: Lucy Nicholson / Reuters

The main argument for voting no on 3 is the law “allows” perverted men to enter women’s bathrooms. It does not allow that. In fact, the law passed in 2016 states that it is not to be abused by sexual predators – which is illegal anyway. And in the past two years, there have been no reported incidents of abuse of the law. None. It’s not an issue.

4. The White House is attempting to removing protections & inclusions for the transgender community.

Credit: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Last week, the New York Times reported that the Trump administration is considering defining gender as strictly biological, denying transgender people even exist. This is not their first action against the transgender community – the president attempted to block transgender troops from serving, prohibited the CDC from using the term “transgender” in official documents, and revoked Obama administration protections for transgender students.

When the MA law was passed in 2016, it was a huge milestone for the transgender community in the country. Massachusetts was one of the first states to pass such protections. We need to keep Massachusetts a place where trans people feel safe. We cannot let trans people be erased.

5. The law covers more than just transgender people.

The Massachusetts Public Accommodations Law prohibits discrimination based on race, religion, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, gender identity, sex, deafness, blindness, any physical/mental disability, etc. This law protects all people from discrimination in public places, including on the basis of gender identity – not solely.

Question 3 marks the first time such a question is put up to voters on a state level. Be on the right side of history and don’t let transgender people be erased. Vote YES on 3.


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Alexandra Kallfelz is a senior studying journalism at Boston University. Besides writing, Alexandra's passions include color guard, travel, Netflix, music, and Disney. She is a pure-blood New Englander and a dog fanatic.
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