A federal judge in Texas issued a ruling on Oct. 1 declaring unlawful two Biden administration guidelines related to gender pronouns, unisex bathrooms, and transgender pronouns.
U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk ruled declared guidelines issued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to be unlawful but stopped short of granting the state’s request for injunctive relief.
In September 2021, Texas sued the HHS and EEOC, asking the District Court for the Northern District of Texas in Amarillo to declare both guidances unlawful.
While the issues and laws in disputed were numerous, they boiled down to a dispute on whether protections for gay and transgender people extended to related conduct like pronouns, bathrooms, dress, and transgender health care.
"Plaintiffs reading of Bostock tracks Justice Gorsuch's words and reasoning: Title VII prohibits employment discrimination because of sexual orientation and gender-identity status—i.e., "being homosexual," "being transgender"-but not necessarily all correlated conduct," Kacsmaryk wrote.
Kacsmaryk added: "Though the June 15 Guidance barely passes muster, the March 2 Guidance is arbitrary and capricious."
Kacsmaryk was nominated to the federal bench by former U.S. President Donald Trump.
“Kacsmaryk’s ruling stops the EEOC from imposing pronouns and forced acceptance of co-gender bathrooms on all employers that don't want it, and the fact is most employers don't want it,” said Jeff Younger, whose 10-year-old son has been at the center of legal proceedings that allow his ex-wife to socialize him as a girl.
“The opinion allows employers to provide these accommodations if they want to, but the government can't impose it.”