One of today’s memes is Saturday’s ABC Democratic debate in NH, where the bathroom break’s brevity was apparently male-biased. One reason is that there is a lack of stalls often common in general to the sexist layout of women’s restrooms (you know, the ones without troughs at sports stadiums explain the long lines for only half the restroom facilities at half-time). In the case of frugal and small New England colleges, tiny restrooms are not because of design economy, but because there may be an outhouse or shrubbery nearby.
The second yet related meme today is Hillary Clinton’s comment in Iowa on “low-income schools should be closed” derived from a centrist POV that is sympathetic to charter schools and its performance-based assessment mania and certainly revealed in the neoliberal overlaps of the Clinton and Obama administrations.
With all due respect to the crusades of former California Legislator, March Fong Eu, pay toilets are the charter schools of restrooms, you trust it’s better because you had to pay something for it, like private schools so small in enrollment but persist only because some parents either like the status or don’t wish to have their children rub elbows with “those” people”. Private schools don’t have hall passes since clients pay a larger proportion of the bills, rationalized as “student-teacher (minus administrator) ratio”. This is the covert meaning of the competitive wealth generated by trickle-down neoliberalism. Not to be confused with port-a-potty libertarianism.
As such, instead of number one and number two, the neoliberal toilet represents a Third Way where the ideal DLC restroom is one that has enough stalls for both free and pay toilets, but with enough revenue income to afford attendants and/or police officers to usher out the homeless. The GOP version also has attendants who are faith-based and trained in George Michael public toilet reversion/reparative therapy, and who as hetero-profilers, know whether LGBT folks are in the wrong restroom. And secesh versions of course, are segregated by other demographic categories because as we all know, “money don’t smell”, also known to tea room party patriot members as “in for a penny. out for a Santorum”.
John Nevil Maskelyne, an English stage magician, invented the first modern pay toilet in the late 19th century. His door lock for London toilets required the insertion of a penny coin to operate it, hence the euphemism to “spend a penny”.
The first pay toilet in the United States was installed in 1910 in Terre Haute, Indiana.