The main topic I expected to hear about at the sex conference was public washrooms. In the weeks leading up to the conference washrooms were a common topic on Answers in Genesis’s then-biweekly program Answers News, usually bills either explicitly allowing or forbidding trans people from using the washroom designated for people sharing their identity, or institutions installing gender-neutral washrooms. A couple of times they even directly said they would be addressing this at the conference. This isn’t a topic I have a particular interest in, but I did have some questions about their usual talking points. In particular, they commonly say that the Creation Museum and the Ark Encounter have separate men’s and women’s washrooms as directed by the Bible.

I can confirm that the Ark Encounter has separate men’s and women’s washrooms. In fact, my first visit to the Ark Encounter was the first time I had ever seen segregated men’s and women’s porta-potties! However, there was still a gender-neutral accessible porta-potty (does the Bible not apply if you’re in a wheelchair?) and there are some small gender-neutral washrooms at the Creation Museum.

Ark Encounter’s gender-segregated porta-potties

But that’s not the part of the statement I object to. Once again, I find myself in the awkward position of being the Bible-thumper in the room! Where does it say that washrooms must be segregated by gender in the Bible? I demand chapter and verse!

The Bible simply does not say anything about public washrooms, gender-segregated or otherwise. In Old Testament times the world was your toilet, for men and women equally. By New Testament times there were public washrooms, at least for the rich. It’s unlikely Jesus ever used one, but many of the cities the apostles preached in had public washrooms, all of which were gender neutral, and lacking any form of dividers. People just walked in, hiked up their togas and did their business in full view of their neighbours, regardless of gender. The apostles must have been aware of this situation, and yet not one even bothered to mention it. So how can they say that their opposition to gender-neutral bathrooms comes from the Bible now?