A 32-year old mother is making headlines for a topless selfie that she posted on Facebook. This may not be what you think, however. Christi Salcedo of Texas is a breast cancer survivor. After being diagnosed with Stage 3 invasive ductal carcinoma, she underwent a double mastectomy and also had her lymph nodes removed. She decided against having reconstructive surgery because
However, since recovering from cancer, Salcedo says that she began to notice people staring at her chest in public. This made her feel increasingly uncomfortable. In her post, Salcedo said, “I notice more eyes trying to figure me out,” she wrote. “At the grocery store, restaurants… Walmart was the worst. I want to scream, ‘YES! You are seeing it right! This is breast cancer… Please check yourself!’ But instead, I let my eyes meet theirs in an almost plea for a change in what has become our society.”
She says that this experience also made her consider that people may think that she is transgender because of her lack of breasts. This thought continued to preoccupy her as she watched the ongoing battle in North Carolina over House Bill 2. This Bill limits people to using only pubic toilets that correspond to the gender they were assigned at birth. Those who support the bill argue that it protects children from potential sexual harassment, while opponents point out the legislation’s blatant discrimination.
In her post, Salcedo argues that such a bill hurts transgender people as well as people like herself, whose bodies may look a little different. “The great bathroom debate of 2016 has hurt more than just the transgender community,” she says. She goes on to argue that HB2 also victimizes breast cancer survivors who may be denied access to the toilet that they wish to use because of confusion about their bodies. This unlikely argument has touched a wide spectrum of HB2 victims and further rallied opposition against the bill. Ultimately, “People just want to use the restroom,” says Salcedo.