As I understand it, Anchorage, Alaska has become the first U.S. city to actually vote on an anti-transgender bathroom bill. That city has made the historic decision to allow people to use the bathroom that corresponds to their gender identity and not their birth certificate.

There is much about issues of gender fluidity I do not understand; but I do understand the number 28, which is the number of human beings who were murdered last year because they were transgender.

Violence toward this vulnerable population can only be aggravated by a co-ordinated campaign to make Americans afraid of people who are transgender, even though there is not even one example of an actual bathroom assault by someone from that community.

When I was in seminary and still embedded in the homophobic culture I had been taught as a child, I happened to look up at a huge book in a medical library. I approached the book because of its immense size, and was surprised to find the book was about surgical techniques for infants born outside the polarities of “male” and “female.”

I still knew next to nothing on the issue, but I realized I had been taught a lie about the binary nature of sexual morality. If people are born outside our binary human categories, surely it is the categories that must go, not the human beings.

When sexual assault centers all across the nation tell us that our transgender neighbors are not to be feared and are much more likely to be assaulted themselves than to hurt anyone, I believe we should pay attention to the experts and not to vicious politicians and televangelists who regularly use fear of the “other” as their primary fundraising tool.

Let’s make sure that Anchorage is the first step in a movement to overturn the religions and politics of hatred toward gender fluid people who are just looking for a safe harbor in this all too intolerant culture.