Gay and transgender students at Columbia University are sad and angry at the entire concept of democracy because students who live in at least one dorm have voted against having a gender-neutral bathroom free-for-all in their residence hall.
This year’s gender-neutral bathroom vote at Columbia has been a granular, floor-by-floor affair, reports the Columbia Daily Spectator, the student newspaper at the fancypants school.
One student, sophomore Tommy Song, said students who live on his floor in Broadway Hall voted to maintain separate bathrooms for males and females.
“The majority of people on my floor decided against turning the bathrooms into gender-neutral ones,” Song told Spectator. “That was unexpected for me because, considering the political climate of the school, I thought the majority of people would vote for gender-neutral bathrooms.”
Song complained that some people will have to continue to walk all the way to a different floor to use the bathroom or take a shower at the elite school, “which is a hassle.”
He also told Campus Reform that he believes who supports Columbia University College Republicans “could possibly be offended by gender-neutral bathrooms.”
Columbia Queer Alliance president Krish Bhatt criticized the entire system of democracy because using it allows for the possibility of bathrooms separated based on sex.
“While I understand the intention of this decision is to create more gender-inclusive restrooms and to hear from students of all backgrounds, this rule reinforces a democratic fallacy, where those who would benefit from a decision to designate bathrooms as gender-inclusive are not necessarily represented or represented to the extent of their need,” Bhatt told the Ivy League newspaper.
“The voices of cisgender residents, who likely outnumber transgender or gender nonconforming students and are more or less unimpacted by the decision, are being centered.”
Students living in five dormitories at Columbia voted — floor by floor — to decide if their floors would adopt a “gender inclusive” bathroom usage policy created by Columbia University officials.
Students could vote for mixing everybody in the same bathrooms or for traditional bathrooms designated for males and females.
Voting on dorm floor bathroom policies was not mandatory. However, Columbia required students to show up at the first-of-the-year floor meetings at which voting occurred.
The vote was not publicized before the meetings.
Voting appears to have been anonymous.
The results of all the votes do not appear to be publicly available.