The grandmother who helped spank Gov. Nathan Deal for not further protecting her anti-gay views is back trolling LGBT Atlanta, this time mad that transgender people might want to match their name with their gender identity.
Tanya Ditty – still smarting from losing another "religious freedom" fight – has found something to rage over between legislative sessions: Name changes by transgender people. It's a new issue for Ditty, who's more comfortable rallying against gay marriage, comparing gay folks to pedophiles and other criminals, and defending Kelvin Cochran, Atlanta's anti-gay, misogynist and anti-Semitic former fire chief.
But in her quest to stay relevant, Ditty is evolving too. She's expanded her phobias to include trans people. When she caught a whiff of the legal case of Rowan Feldhaus, Ditty knew it was time to engage her expert trolling.
Feldhaus, a 24-year-old trans student at Augusta University, is fighting a court decision that denied his name change after a judge refused by ruling that the request might offend the "sensibilities and mores" of Georgians. Feldhaus, with the help of Lambda Legal, appealed the decision of Columbia County Superior Court Judge J. David Roper, who said that the name Feldhaus sought – Elijah – wasn't gender-neutral enough for him.
Ditty picked up on Roper's rationale for discrimination and openly embraced it. Because having lost the war on same-sex marriage, Ditty and anti-LGBT activists like her refocused on transgender issues and launched the potty wars. So to her, Roper's decision in the Feldhaus case isn't about discrimination, it's about the safety of conservative straight white people like her.
“I have a concern along the lines of anything that makes it not black and white, male or female,” said Tanya Ditty, state director of the faith-based organization Concerned Women for America.
For her, a name change could disguise a person’s true gender, which could threaten others’ safety and privacy.
See how she did that? It'd be a clever argument, if it was true. But it's one that anti-LGBT forces across the state employed in May as they ranted against new federal guidelines concerning the treatment of transgender students. And by rant, they went bat-shit crazy.
For his part, Roper and his bigotry are leaving the bench. Since his decision in the case attracted national attention, the judge announced plans to retire in February, according to the AJC. Too bad the same can't be said for Ditty.