The Equality Act was introduced into the House of Representatives by Representative David Cicilline of Rhode Island on March 13, 2019. In summary …
This bill prohibits discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity in areas including public accommodations and facilities, education, federal funding, employment, housing, credit, and the jury system. Specifically, the bill defines and includes sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity among the prohibited categories of discrimination or segregation.
The bill expands the definition of public accommodations to include places or establishments that provide (1) exhibitions, recreation, exercise, amusement, gatherings, or displays; (2) goods, services, or programs; and (3) transportation services.
The bill allows the Department of Justice to intervene in equal protection actions in federal court on account of sexual orientation or gender identity.
The bill prohibits an individual from being denied access to a shared facility, including a restroom, a locker room, and a dressing room, that is in accordance with the individual’s gender identity.
Nothing too controversial there, right? The LGBT people in our world surely deserve the same rights and protections as everyone, right? It isn’t rocket science, right? Well …
“Standing with my colleagues in opposition to the so-called “Equality Act” as it undermines human dignity, freedom of speech, religion, and conscience, and puts parental rights at risk.” – U.S. Representative Warren Davidson, Ohio
No no no no no Warren! Human dignity is what it is trying to protect and preserve. What, do you want separate water coolers, perhaps, for LGBT people? Or … perhaps they should have segregated schools? Oh, I know … you don’t want any to be able to buy a house in your neighborhood, or to get a decent job, or even to be able to purchase a wedding cake, perhaps? Or … perhaps you would like them to have a number tattooed onto their arms and wear a gold star on their clothing? Dignity, Warren? How do you define that word? Seems to me you’re trying to take away the dignity of an entire group of people … yes, Warren … people.
Religion? How does giving an LGBT person a fair shot at a job or at a slot in college or to get a loan to purchase a car interfere with anybody’s ‘freedom of religion’? Answers, please? Freedom of speech? Um, excuse me, but what … you want to be able to shout from the steps of the Capitol Building “I hate gays!”? Sure, go ahead … see if anybody votes for you next year. How in the Sam Heck does ensuring equal rights for people interfere with your or my freedom of speech? The answer is it doesn’t.
And lastly … “puts parental rights at risk”??? What planet are you on, Warren? Let me ask you a quick question, if you don’t mind … just how much alcohol do you drink in the course of a 24-hour period? First, I’m not even sure what you mean when you say, “parental rights”. I think of parental responsibilities as parents’ duty to keep their children warm, healthy, well-fed, safe and to see to their education, but … what “rights” do you refer to? And how does giving people equal opportunities in employment, housing, credit, education, and public facilities undermine those “parental rights”? Answers, please.
Warren Davidson happens to be my representative and I know him to be a fool who is more concerned with preserving bitcoin than human life, so apart from the fact that he represents my district in Congress, it would be easy to write his babbling rhetoric off as foolishness. But …
“Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee (CWALAC) joined with Reps. Vicky Hartzler (R-Missouri), Jody Hice (R-Georgia), Warren Davidson (R-Ohio), Roger Marshall (R-Kansas) and Carol Miller (R-West Virginia) to speak out about the Equality Act’s harmful effects on women and girls. Alongside the lawmakers, representatives from CWALAC, Women’s Liberation Front, Alliance Defending Freedom, Susan B. Anthony List and Family Research Council, were clear – the “Equality Act” will do away with women’s sports, safe spaces for women, and jeopardize parents’ jurisdiction over their child’s health care. It is dangerous for our country. This bill is extreme and dangerous. It is not about equality; it is about imposing a new form of discrimination against women and people of faith in our country.” – Concerned Women For America
Has this entire bloomin’ nation gone loco?
There is not one single legitimate concern voiced by either Davidson or this “women’s” group or anyone else, for that matter. So … what’s going on here? Well, folks, it’s called b-i-g-o-t-r-y. Homophobia. Fear of that which is not understood. So, rather than seek to educate, they choose hate. Rather than accept people as they are, they choose to shun them because they are not just like them.
LGBT people are people. Humans. Just like me and you. Just because some narrow-minded portion of society feels threatened by people who love someone of their own gender is no reason to deny people the right to earn a living, live in a decent neighborhood, shop in their local store, send their children to school, get a loan, or have a wedding cake baked. People, that’s all.
The Equality Act bill passed in the House of Representatives on Friday by a vote of 236-173, with 23 abstentions. Eight of the ‘Aye’ votes were by republicans, and all 173 ‘Nay’ votes were by republicans. The eight republicans who supported the bill are:
- Susan Brooks (Indiana)
- Mario Diaz-Balart (Florida)
- Brian Fitzpatrick (Pennsylvania)
- Will Hurd (Texas)
- John Katko (New York)
- Tom Reed (New York)
- Elise Stefanik (New York)
- Greg Walden (Oregon)
These eight deserve a thumbs up for voting their conscience instead of toeing the party line. The rest of the republicans continue to do the bidding of the evangelicals and the person in the Oval Office … shame on them!
Sadly, the bill will die a rapid death when it reaches the Senate, for Mitchell McConnell has made a pledge, it seems, to ensure that no bills that are for the benefit of the people of this nation will pass under his watch. And, if it passes the Senate by some miracle, Trump will veto it, for his puppeteers like Franklin Graham, Robert Jeffress and Pat Robertson are against it and he does their bidding, not ours. ‘Tis a sad state of affairs when people in this nation no longer have basic civil rights, human rights.