The Culture of Harassing Transgender Kids in Minnesota

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I do not know much about what happened in the bathroom at the Osseo Senior High School the other day, but on face value, it looks like adult staff were upset that a transgender female high school student was using, I assume, what they considered to be the wrong bathroom. They used a crow bar to open the stall door, then apparently got out of the way of the girl’s cell phone camera. The video, taken and posted by her, is below.

Like I said, I don’t know that much about this specific event, but Osseo is the neighboring school district to mine, and I can add a certain amount of context.

In this area, the western suburbs of Minneapolis, there are a couple of gradients. One is the gradient across population density, going from dense city-like suburbs right next to Minneapolis, to the west, to less and less densely populated suburbs, to farmland. I live near the outer boundary of that gradient.

Then there is the south to north gradient running from the big lake that the rich people live on (in the south), running northward to where the landscape becomes less interesting, the wealth drops considerably, and the population becomes mostly working class. Far enough north-ish, and you are in Anoka. A major source of humor around here is comparing the hicks from Coon Rapids (where I lived for several years) with the hicks from Anoka.

Osseo School District, which overlaps with the town of Osseo (school districts in Minnesota are named after towns, but are only vaguely geographically connected to those towns, outside the big cities), is in Hennepin County. Up north of Hennepin County, out on the edge of that second gradient, is Anoka County. Hennepin County includes the most progressive urban zone in the United States outside of Cambridge, Mass, and overlaps with Minnesota’s fifth Congressional District. If you know your congressional districts, that will be meaningful to you. Anoka, on the other hand, is mainly in the sixth Congressional District. Remember Michele Bachmann? Yeah, that district.

So, Imagine Hennepin County and Anoka County combined, and subract all the wealthy high end school districts like Wayzata (top school in the state, go Trojans!), remove Minneapolis, and so on, what you’ve got left is something that does not quite meet Lake Woebegon standards of Minnesota Nice. What you’ve got lefy is a high proportion of working class people, mostly conservative, sexist, anti-gay, Trump-loving Michele Bachmann supporting, crackhead yahoos and their families.

OK, maybe I’m characterizing the region a bit too harshly. But it is mostly Michele Bachmann land, where people on average really hate Transgender folk.

The Anoka-Hennepin School District is one of the largest districts in the state, geographically. It is the district that served the population I just described. Hennepin and Anoka Counties minus the civilized city and the la-la-chi-chi upper end suburbs, and minus some other districts, like Osseo.

Anoka-Hennepin was nearly shut down a few years ago by the US Center for Disease Control. Why did the CDC want to shut down Anoka-Hennepin? Because too many students were dying there. Looking at the statistics for a certain cause of death across America’s school districts, Anoka-Hennepin had one of the highest rates of death. That alarmed the CDC, so they went in and said, this gets fixed or we shut you down.

And what was the cause of death that had become alarmingly common in the Anoka-Hennepin School District?

Suicide, disproportionally by LGBT kids who were being bullied by both student and staff. And, the staff policy for addressing this bullying was to ignore it. That was the actual policy. Let it go all Darwinian.

The Osseo School District is geographically within the overall range of Anoka-Hennepin, similar to the rest of it, and is culturally roughly the same. This is also where Trump-loving deplorables were displaying Nazi symbols right after the 2016 election. It is also a place that includes a large mostly white neighborhood and a large mostly non-white neighborhood, but has gerrymandered the school district positions to make sure the latter is never represented on the school board.

Here’s the video of the Osseo staff busting into the bathroom stall to harass this young transgender student:

Shame on Osseo.


One Town’s War on Gay Teens (this is a Rolling Stone article that blew the lid off the Anoka-Hennepin problem)

Eight Suicides in Two Years at Anoka-Hennepin School District

String of teenage suicides in Michele Bachmann’s Minnesota backyard linked to anti-gay bullying

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19 thoughts on “The Culture of Harassing Transgender Kids in Minnesota

  1. “They used a crow bar to open the stall door,”

    Really? Violently breaking into a bathroom stall with a crow bar was intended to protect who, exactly?

    I hope the ignorant fucks who did that are not long for their jobs. (I’m sure they’re secure, sadly, but I can hope.)

  2. Did you see that the NY Times said JK Rowling isn’t transphobic. Common sense is beginning to creep back into main street media.

    Pretty soon people might even opine that people cannot change sex with surgery or hormone therapy – or even by how they dress (or think)!

    I also saw that the Lancet just published a study which said that natural immunity is at least as good as vaccination immunity. Will wonders never cease. More common sense.

  3. Did you see that the NY Times said JK Rowling isn’t transphobic.

    amazing — the resident bigot and science denier picks items from the times when they support his asinine views and ignores them the rest of the time.

    No, that’s no amazing: it’s just ricka’s usual lack of consistency.

    1. What a surprise. Rather than engage with the opinions, article or study, dean engages in ad hominem.

      Do you agree with the NY Times piece or the Lancet study? Or not? Or do you just like to insult the speaker?

  4. rickA, the times is not a science publication — even someone as bigoted and blinded to any science developed since the Greeks as you are should know that. Your dishonesty in reporting the Lancet study is also noted. From it:

    Vaccination remains the safest and most optimal tool for protecting against infection and COVID-19-related hospitalisation and death, irrespective of previous infection status.

    Your long tradition of misrepresenting things in order to support your preconceived bullshit continues. [And it isn’t “insulting the speaker” as you claim: the comments about you are repeating facts about your posting history.]

  5. JK Rowling is not transphobic, and I’ll state that categorically. The posts that she tweeted were in response to the dangerous trend of of putting men who claim to be trans in Scottish prisons where they rape women, of changing the word “Women” to be “menstruators,” or “womb havers,” or some such nonsense in order to be inclusive of people whose gender identity may not reflect their sex, while their sex never can be changed.

    People who loved her books but now hate her did not understand her books. There is one line in the very first book in which Neville is lauded by Dumbledore “It is hard to stand up to your enemies, it is harder still to stand up for your friends.”

    What happened in Osseo was shamefully handled. Transgender Identifying kids are being bullied, yes, but there should not be a bathroom policy in which girls are told that their concerns about safeguarding against boys is bigoted. The approach of teaching and echoing to teens that are gender non-conforming based on their sex that they are really the other sex inside their body, that they are wrong and need to be corrected by medicine through edocrinology or surgery is going to create far more problems than it solves.

    I have met and spoken with young adults who were rushed into a course of puberty blockers, had their genitals surgically altered, put on HRT, when they really were too young to consent and now face life-long consequences that they couldn’t have meaningfully consented to as children.

    We have now ingrained a culture of “no debate” over this issue, that “children know who they are” at a very early age, and that people like even myself are considered hateful bigots for being skeptical that we should be approachin this issue with a “hey, let’s put some breaks on this until we actually have some science” that will guide us.

    There are some studies that get touted that show that kids who do not get medically affirmed treatment are more likely to kill themselves than if they do, but they are based on small sample sizes. There are also studies that show that kids who are affirmed medically have a higher suicide rate.

    Puberty blockers are NOT safe, despite everything you hear. These are drugs that were developed for adults to deal with the effects of such medical treatments as prostate removal and even then very cautiously because of the side effects. They are being used off-label on kids, and those kids who take them are 80% more likely to continue on to HRT and surgical options, while those who do not resolve their gender issues as they move through puberty towards adulthood.

    There is a bill in the Minnesota State Senate right now, after passing the HR, that will ban conversion therapy for LGBTQ kids. This is rightfully done to prevent the horrors of conversion therapy for children who are gay, but the part that is dangerous is that it makes it against the law to do anything but provide affirmation therapy for gender confused kids. Gender confusion can result from sexual abuse, it has a higher incidence rate in autism than in neurotypical children, and there are often other factors. But more importantly, being gender-noncorming is not a medical condition.

    It is a social condition. The idea that a feminine boy is actually a girl makes it easy for the patriarchy to deal with because then we don’t have to fight to break down gender structures.

    This is what the Radical Feminists, the ones who are called TERFS and despised, threatened, and whose rallies are shouted down by men in black pajamas, are saying.

    We need to have this debate, we need to have this discussion.

    If you want to know why I take the position I do, it’s because I have been gender non-conforming most of my life and I was considered a “pussy” and not boy enough when I was growing up. I was bullied for it. If the current culture of “medicate first” was in play in the 1970’s, I would have been declared trans. My gender issues have sorted, largely by will, but not by medication.

    Just shoving off any skepticism as “Right Wing Hate” is to perpetuate a problem that is going to be with us for a long time anyway. I am not RW by any means. If you doubt what I I am saying I can lead you to sources, such as the Interim Cass Report, the whistle-blowers at Tavistock and the GIDs, but you can also read about the hate that women get for speaking up at this site:

    It’s all justified by claiming that skepticism is literal violence, so they deserve it. You can also read my articles in my Substack.

    1. Mike:

      I totally agree. Great post!

      People cannot change sex, even if they undergo surgery, sex hormone therapy or dress differently. To pretend otherwise is a denial of reality and is very dangerous. 80% of gender confused kids grow out of it and the large number of de-transitioners shows the horrors of gender affirming care. Kids will be paying the price for this fad/social contagion for the rest of their lives.

      Do what you want once you are an adult – but don’t let children make themselves sterile and undergo cosmetic surgery because of social pressure.

      Anyway – well said Mike!

  6. Thanks, Rick! I disagree with you on almost everything. but this is important to understand. For those of you unfamiliar with the trials and troubles caused by rushing into a trans diagnosis. This is a thread by a detransitioner. If you aren’t a tweeter, let me know and I will create an unroll:

    This is cast as a Republican V Democrat issue, and as such, Democrats are finding it hard to speak to other Democrats about it for fear of being shunned. It’s not a left v right issue, but needs to be seen in context of the performance and structure of gender.

  7. Thanks for the article, too, Rick, but in reading it my fellow liberals will likely dismiss it because of the propagandistic anti-liberal slant in the article.

    What truth does get through is important, though. Adolescents need to be able to come to terms with who they are. Pushing an affirmation-only strategy of therapy under the guise of banning “conversion therapy,” such as is being run through the Minnesota Senate as combined with the banning of treatment of gay and lesbians, will end up causing much more anguish than it prevents.

    Even though I am active in my DFL I don’t know who I can talk to in order to persuade as all of my reps and my senator have expressed support for it. I know it will pass no matter what I do, and the governor will sign it, but my hope is to find someone that can help me communicate to the executive branch to help make sure that it is enforced based on science rather than just as an effort to “do something” for gender confused kids.

    Labelling boys as girls, and vv is a dangerous path and we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that the kid in Osseo is a boy. He’s been victimized by this, first by those who tell him he should use the girls’, and second by the trend in society to accept that the way to resolve his issues with gender is to believe that he’s a girl.

    We need to apply even a basic razor to this. What is more likely to be a parsimonious explanation for gender non-conformity?

    1. A gender identity with no explanable cause inhabits bodies and is sometimes counter to the physical nature of the body it inhabits, or

    2. The gender expectations of our society have placed pressures on people that can sometimes be too much to conform to and as adolescents kids who are outside of those expectations are led to believe that they are wrong?

    Start from there, and then start thinking about what it means for girls when their opportunities for sports are reduced by boys who are placed on their teams as trans. Title IX was enacted to create opportunities for women and girls in athletics because our species is bimodal in secondary sexual traits associated with the skills and abilities needed for sport. Placing trans id males in girls sports is inherently unfair, and you end up with males such as Lia Thompson on the U Penn women’s swim team ( and his desire to change along with the women on the team even though he has not undergone any bottom surgery.) Start thinking about the message that we are sending girls in schools that they must accept boys who claim to id as trans or non-binary into their restrooms, but no form of medical or psychological diagnosis can be asked becasue that would be “transphobic.” It prevents girls from safeguarding, and schoolgirls in England have been holding their pee until after school to avoid it. They are called bigots and transphobes for safeguarding in a culture where lads are already horrible to girls.

    It’s not as simple as “protecting trans kids.” Other people are affected, but they have been shoved aside.

    1. Absolutely other people are affected. Switching the focus from the poor trans kid – lets focus on the people around the “trans kid”.

      What happened to the right to privacy for the poor high school girls who are now required to shower and change cloths with a biological boy (and visa versa)?

      What about the religious violation for the religions which prescribe people of the opposite sex from showering/bathing together?

      We segregate bathrooms by sex for a reason – and the rights of the people in the bathroom are being violated by the person of the opposite sex who are using the wrong bathroom and shower.

      This whole mess is caused by pretending that people can change sex. People cannot change sex – and that is basic biology and a fact. If we went back to the facts we could avoid all the problems created by letting boys/men compete in girls/womens sports, people using the wrong bathroom/showers and biological men being placed into women’s prisons and raping the women inmates.

      It is all pretty simple. Stop pretending people can change sex just by saying they identify as the opposite sex. Trans-men are biological women and trans-women are biological men and those are the facts. A simple blood test can show what the biological sex of a person is and it doesn’t change based on thoughts, hormones, surgery or clothing.

      Yes – the other people have been shoved aside. They have had their separate spaces invaded. They have been raped in prisons. Their rights have been violated. Title IX has been violated. Scholarships have been stolen. Their very sex has been defined out of existence. What a strange and terrible tragedy.

  8. Before we agree to go back and forth on name-calling and linking puerile satire about JK Rowling, we need to understand that in England there is a long running review by an independent pediatrician, and the final results are to be published towards the end of this year. Here are some bullet points from a preliminary release of the review from March of 2022.

    The rapid increase in the number of children requiring support and the complex case-mix means that the current clinical model, with a single national provider, is not sustainable in the longer term.

    We need to know more about the population being referred and outcomes. There has not been routine and consistent data collection, which means it is not possible to accurately track the outcomes and pathways that children and young people take through the service.

    There is lack of consensus and open discussion about the nature of gender dysphoria and therefore about the appropriate clinical response.

    Because the specialist service has evolved rapidly and organically in response to demand, the clinical approach and overall service design has not been subjected to some of the normal quality controls that are typically applied when new or innovative treatments are introduced. ?

    Key points – moving forward

    Children and young people with gender incongruence or dysphoria must receive the same standards of clinical care, assessment and treatment as every other child or young person accessing health services.

    The care of this group of children and young people is everyone’s business. Our initial work indicates that clinicians at all levels feel they have the transferable skills and commitment to support these children and young people, but there needs to be agreement and guidance about the appropriate clinical assessment process that should take place at primary, secondary and tertiary level, underpinned by better data and evidence.

    Addressing the challenges will require service transformation, with support offered at different levels of the health service.

    The Review’s research programme will not just build the evidence base in the UK but will also contribute to the global evidence base, meaning that young people, their families, carers and the clinicians supporting them can make more informed decisions about the right path for them.

    A fundamentally different service model is needed which is more in line with other paediatric provision, to provide timely and appropriate care for children and young people needing support around their gender identity. This must include support for any other clinical presentations that they may have.

    Many European countries are pulling back and re-evaluating the science that led to a rush towards adolescent affirmation treatment, once an awareness of the fact that there is no evidence, nor even should anyone who understands adolescence believe, that blocking puberty is safe. Even if the actual drugs were safe, what are we thinking here? Adolescence is a crucial stage of development for many reasons, and if we are prescribing them so that males don’t develop male physical features should that be a valid medical reason to prescribe them? There’s too much at risk and, these are the same kids we have decided are too young for tattoos.

    There are also links in this article to the changes and slow-downs in rushing towards medical affirmation.

    1. Before we agree to go back and forth on name-calling and linking puerile satire about JK Rowling

      The problem is that rowling has proven herself to be an awful person in a variety of ways: anti-gay, anti-trans, etc. Ricka, is much the same, probably worse, since he throws in a huge helping of blatant racism and misogyny [notice he never references anything other than spots like ‘hotair’, notoriously right-wing and home for no end of racists and other low-lifes?]. Don’t make the mistake of believing his objection has anything to do with “lack of science” or concern about children: it’s about his bigotry and the horrors he imagines [with no supporting evidence, as usual] from studying the issue. It’s his usual argumentation from privilege, authority, ignorance, right-wing authoritarianism, and the fact that he doesn’t believe any advancement in science since he was in elementary school.

      As to “here is no evidence, nor even should anyone who understands adolescence believe, that blocking puberty is safe. ” — reference? And thinking that “we are prescribing them [the drugs involved] so that males don’t develop male physical features” is the only reasons parents go through with this for their children is a short-sighted view.

      It is complicated, but attention needs to be paid to what researchers [for and against] say, and not amplify what people on the right, like rickA, who have repeatedly shown themselves to be against anything that doesn’t benefit well-off whites, shout out.

  9. That’s simply not true about Rowling, Dean.

    But, I’ve said my piece and left links for you to read for references. If you don’t choose to open them, that’s on you.

  10. Mike:

    Obviously Rowling is not a transphobe. Even the New York Times agrees.

    Dean simply doesn’t like anybody who doesn’t agree with him and once they are not on his side he name calls.

    I have never said anything racist on this cite – but dean has labeled me a racist hundreds of times. It is pure name calling.

    So ignore dean.

    You are 100% correct on this issue and I totally agree with you. Your posts were well written, well researched, full of citations and 100% correct.

    Just ignore the name calling and keep sticking up for the confused kids being duped into having harmful surgery and harmful HRT based on criminal affirmative gender care ideology.

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