During presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s acceptance speech next Tuesday, a group fighting for wider acceptance of transgenderism will be airing an ad decrying North Carolina’s bathroom policy.
The 60-second ad was put together by Movement Advancement Project, an LGBT think tank headquartered in Denver, Colorado. It depicts a transgender person named Aliana Kupec being turned away from using the restroom of choice.
Kupec, a North Carolina resident, feels threatened by the state’s law protecting single-sex bathrooms and changing rooms.
“I’ve lived as a woman for many years,” Kupec says in the ad. “Most people, when they stop and think about it, they realize that when businesses can legally force me to use the men’s room, it puts me at risk for harassment and violence. Safety and privacy in bathrooms are important for all of us.”
“We are concerned that this is happening without most people really understanding who transgender people are,” Ineke Mushovic, executive director of the Movement Advancement Project, said in an interview with The New York Times about the advertisement. “Most people have never met someone who’s transgender, so their heads are filled with all sorts of stereotypes.”
“This ad cuts through the political rhetoric and simply asks people to consider the serious challenges and discrimination faced by transgender people ― discrimination that is still legal in most states,” Mushovic also said.
LGBT activists have begun pushing for federal anti-discrimination laws, building on the Civil Rights Act of 1964, that would undermine legislation like North Carolina’s.
However, the GOP platform committee, meeting this week in Cleveland, is considering a draft of a proposed platform and may include language in support of North Carolina’s bathroom bill in the final platform.
Trump himself has said that bathroom laws ought to be left to the states. However, he has also made statements in support of the LGBT community and against the North Carolina law. Additionally, the real estate mogul has said that transgendered celebrities may use the restroom of their choice in any Trump properties.
Big business, typically portrayed as an ally of Republicans on economic issues, has taken a strong stance against North Carolina’s legislation. Sixty-eight major tech firms, including Apple and Intel, submitted a legal brief protesting the law last week.
The Movement Advancement Project is not the only group agitating for pro-LGBT changes in the GOP platform, either. Billionaire activist and hedge fund manager Paul Singer has been bankrolling a group, the American Unity Fund, which is fighting social conservatives on nearly every LGBT issue at the convention.
MAP’s “Bathroom” ad will also air during the Democratic National Committee’s convention in Philadelphia.
You can watch the full ad below:
Michael Lucchese works for the American Principles Project.