Today BuzzFeed Reported:
Pesident Obama made a strong case Tuesday for administrative action on LGBT nondiscrimination measures, saying that transgender students can now “assert their rights” following recent Education Department action laying out an expanded view of protections under Title IX.’
Speaking in a White House question-and-answer session with Tumblr CEO David Karp, Obama was asked about the Education Department’s April memorandum detailing a policy that includes anti-transgender discrimination as part of the sex discrimination banned by Title IX, legislation that bars discrimination by schools.
MR. KARP: So one question we heard a lot from our community that I wanted to make sure to mention today: Recently — I think you’ve been following — the Department of Ed’s Office of Civil Rights and DOJ have extended Title IX protections to trans students. What do you see as the next steps to ensure equal treatment of trans people in schools in America?
THE PRESIDENT: Well, Title IX is a powerful tool. It’s interesting — yesterday I had the University of Connecticut men’s and women’s basketball teams here. This is only the second time that the men’s and women’s basketball teams won the national championship in the same year. The previous year was 2004, and it was UConn again.
But what was interesting about it is that the men were kind of a surprise. It was nice. The women were dominant. I mean, the UConn Husky women’s program, they rule. And they are incredible athletes. And talking to these young women, they’re poised and they’re beautiful, and some of them are 6’6” and they’re wearing high heels, and supremely confident and competitive. And that’s a huge shift from even 20 years ago or 30 years ago. The reason for that was Title IX was applied vigorously in schools, and it gave opportunities — it’s not like women suddenly became athletes. They were athletic before. Michelle, when I work out with her, she puts me to shame. (Laughter.) But it had more to do with restrictions and opportunity.
So the point I’m making is, is that Title IX is a very powerful tool. The fact that we are applying it to transgender students means that they are going to be in a position to assert their rights if and when they see that they are being discriminated on their college campuses. And that could manifest itself in a whole variety of ways.