From Hedy Weinberg, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee:
“Title VII and Title IX have long prohibited discrimination on the basis of sex, and federal courts and agencies have recognized that this includes protections for transgender people. Like guidance issued by federal agencies for decades, the guidance in question does not change the law, but explains what agencies think existing law requires.
“The Supreme Court has made clear that you cannot sue an agency just because you disagree with the agency’s non-binding guidance. Moreover, because the guidance is nonbinding, this lawsuit appears to be nothing more than politically-motivated.
“But underneath all of the political bluster are real students, young people who should not have to live in fear of punishment or harassment every time they use the restroom like their peers, or be made to feel like second-class citizens merely for being themselves. We will continue to work toward a day when all students in Tennessee are treated fairly under the law.”
From Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris, R-Collierville
“On behalf of the Senate Republican Caucus, we are pleased that Tennessee will join with other states in challenging the Obama Administration’s actions regarding the redefinition of the term ‘sex’ in connection with Title VII and Title IX and local education, and state sovereignty under the Tenth Amendment.”
“We remain hopeful that the Attorney General will demonstrate similar resolve regarding enforcement of the Refugee Act, public safety and state sovereignty pursuant to SJR467.”
From Family Action Council of Tennessee
Today the state of Tennessee, through the Tennessee Attorney General’s office, joined a lawsuit filed in Texas by that state and several other states over the Obama administration’s attempt to redefine “sex” in Title IX to mean the “gender” by which people subjectively identify themselves, risking the privacy and safety of our citizens. (Link to complaint HERE.)
We are still reviewing the complaint, but give a hearty “amen” to the following statement in it: “Defendants have conspired to turn workplaces and educational settings across the country into laboratories for a massive social experiment, flouting the democratic process, and running roughshod over commonsense policies protecting children and basic privacy rights.”
The following statement regarding the decision of Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery to join the lawsuit filed by the state of Texas and eight other states over Title IX can be attributed to FACT President David Fowler:
“Attorney General Slatery is to be applauded for taking affirmative action in response to the attempt by the Obama administration to use Title IX to tell parents that their children have to be exposed to a member of the opposite sex while in a state of undress. His office is doing exactly what it should be doing, fighting to protect the rights of parents to protect their children’s privacy and the right of our state to set its own domestic policies.
“It is particularly encouraging to see ten states joining North Carolina in suing the Obama administration for its outrageous overreach in using a mere ‘letter’ to change the law as it’s been interpreted for decades. This is the kind of unified pushback against the federal government that has been needed for years.
“With the Attorney General’s action today, the need for a special session to encourage the type of action that has been taken has been abated. Hopefully, the lawsuit will allow our state’s schools to operate in accordance with Title IX as it has always been interpreted without fear that they will be left to fend for themselves if actions against them are threatened.”
From Jennifer Donals, Gov.Bill Haslam’s press secretary in an email, as reported by Nashville Post Politics:
“The governor fully supports Gen. Slatery’s action on behalf of our state. He disagrees with the Obama administration’s overreach and heavy-handed approach. Congress has the authority to write the law, not the executive branch.”