On January 1, a new law took effect in California. This law requires the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to house, search, and refer to inmates according to their preferred gender identity. There is no need for surgery. There is no need for hormone therapy. There is no need for any kind of medical examination. The policy is not optional. Whatever could go wrong?
The Los Angeles Times is reporting that the program is working about as well as could be expected.
Last fall groundbreaking legislation gave transgender, intersex, and nonbinary inmates the right, regardless of anatomy, to choose whether to be housed in a male or female prison. https://t.co/bfHxh2bvJr
— Los Angeles Times (@latimes) April 5, 2021
Kelly Blackwell longs to escape her life as a transgender woman in a California men’s prison, where she struggles every day to avoid being seen in her bra and panties and says she once faced discipline after fighting back when an inmate in her cell asked for oral sex.
After more than 30 years, and two decades since Blackwell began hormone therapy, her chance to leave arrived last fall when groundbreaking legislation gave transgender, intersex and nonbinary inmates the right, regardless of anatomy, to choose whether to be housed in a male or female prison.
The demand has been high, with 261 requests for transfers since SB 132 took effect Jan. 1, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. It’s the start of a hugely sensitive operation playing out in one of the largest prison systems in the country.
“I won’t be around predatory men and I won’t be around staff that frown upon trans women,” Blackwell, 53, said in a phone call from Mule Creek State Prison, east of Sacramento.
But more than two hours away, at the Central California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla, there’s fear. Inmates say guards have warned them that “men are coming” and to expect sexual violence.
“That if we think it’s bad now, be prepared for the worst. That it’s going to be off the hook, it’s going to be jumping,” Tomiekia Johnson, 41, said staffers have told her. “They say we’re going to need a facility that’s going to be like a maternity ward. They say we’re going to have an inmate program where inmates become nannies.”
According to the Times story, there is a review process:
Under prison policy, transgender and intersex people — the latter being a term used to describe conditions in which a person is born with reproductive or sexual anatomy that doesn’t seem to fit the typical definitions of “female” or “male” — are placed, to the extent possible, in certain prisons to ensure they can receive certain medical and mental health treatment. With the new law, all inmates will be asked upon admission about their gender identity, their pronouns, whether they prefer the female or male search policy, and if they want to be housed in an institution that aligns with their gender identity, according to the corrections department.
Inmates can request transfers to their correctional counselor, which are then considered by a committee that includes the warden, custody, medical and mental health staffers, and a PREA compliance manager. Staffers review the inmate’s criminal record, health needs, custody level, sentence and safety concerns.
The reality is that this is a sham. The law heavily weighs on the inmate’s side, and while there is no downside to the prison management for approving a transfer, there is a huge legal and career risk for refusing a request. This has resulted, allegedly, in prison staff using informers to identify “real” transgenders.
Tooks said that in early March, she participated in a meeting with the warden, prison staffers and other transgender inmates to address inmates in the men’s prison trying to transfer under false pretenses.
“The idea was how do we determine who really are transgender inmates coming into the prison system here and the fear of the women here who were afraid and still they are afraid that male inmates will infiltrate this prison system and cause problems,” she said.
This is lunacy. From the National Review’s coverage of the debate on the bill:
But what the bill and its supporters completely neglect to address is the vulnerability of women. The bill does not include any data, information, or even a single reference to the vulnerability of incarcerated females to violent assault from males. This is striking given that more than 90 percent of rape and sexual-assault victims are women and the overwhelming majority of rapes are committed by males. No one has yet demonstrated how transgender women pose less of a risk to women than the rest of the male population does. But, at any rate, the bill as drafted fails to set forth any way to stop a male — any male, including sex offenders — who identifies as female from getting access to vulnerable women.
Speaking at the California assembly hearing yesterday, Abigail Lunetta (a self-described “Democrat, feminist, and an advocate for women’s rights”) opposed the bill: “Right now, Richard Masbruch, a trans-identified male, is currently housed with female inmates in Corona, even though he is serving time for targeting, raping, and torturing women. Under no circumstances is this morally justifiable.”
We actually have a test case of what happens when a prison system adopts this policy. Naturally, it comes from a nation that has thrown away all pretensions of being serious, Great Britain.
David Thompson was a sexual predator with a nearly two decade history of offenses.
White, formerly known as David Thompson, had a history of sexually offending which stretched back to 1989 when he indecently exposed himself to a nine year old boy near a children’s playground.
In 2001 he sexually assaulted and committed gross indecency on a 12 year old boy in Leeds, and two years later raped a pregnant woman after spiking her soft drink with vodka.
He also committed multiple rapes of a 23 year old woman before changing his gender and demanding to be known as Karen.
Britain being Britain, he’d largely skated on these offenses. Around 2014 he moved into a public housing project and demanded to be known as “Karen White.” Again, naturally, everyone went along with him. In 2017, he was arrested for “grievous bodily harm, burglary, multiple rapes and other sexual offences against women” and held without bond. While he was being held, he made his claim of being a woman and the gutless bureaucracy, rather than offend his delicate sensibilities, moved him to a women’s prison. What the f*** ever could go wrong? Glad you asked that:
After initially being charged with the prison sex attacks, White had told the court she could not be guilty because she was not attracted to women and also suffered from erectile dysfunction.
But at a previous hearing, prosecutor, Charlotte Dangerfield told Leeds Magistrates’ Court that she had carried out the first offence within days of arriving at the prison.
The prosecutor said White had struck up a relationship with a fellow inmate which had quickly become inappropriate.
She explained: “The defendant would stand very close to her, touch her arm and wink at her. Her penis was erect and sticking out of the top of her trousers.”
On September 26 last year White approached another inmate. Miss Dangerfield said: “She made inappropriate comments about oral sex, which made the complainant feel sick.
“She took hold of the complainant’s hand and put it on the defendant’s left breast – she could feel her padded bra.”
On a third occasion on 5 October White again made inappropriate comments about oral sex to another prisoner.
“She gave her a bear hug and the defendant pushed her hips towards her with such force that the complainant could feel his penis,” said Miss Dangerfield.
Thompson drew a life sentence for his crimes along with his brief reign of terror at the women’s prison…he has to serve 9 1/2 years before he’s eligible for parole.
Unfortunately, this is now part of the Democrat and progressive program. Not only did the current resident of the White House campaign on that issue, so did at least one of his opponents, see Elizabeth Warren’s Campaign Proposes Free Sex Change Operations for Felons. This is no longer fringe. This is now mainstream. Connecticut and (naturally) Massachusetts have similar laws, and at least one transgender in Massachusetts has successfully used the courts to force his transfer to a women’s prison.
I’d be the last person in the world to suggest that life for weak and effeminate men inside a state prison would not be challenging. I also believe that if the state incarcerates someone, they have a duty and responsibility to keep them safe during their incarceration. The solution to the problem, assuming there is one, does not seem to me to be housing male sex offenders in a women’s prison because they declared they’d rather be there. That should be the theme of a series of porn movies or a Cinemax program (to the extent that they are different things), not public policy.
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