transgender rights

Minnesota Anti-LGBT Activists Turn To Scare Tactics, Religious Persecution Rhetoric In Opposing School Trans-Inclusive Policy

Opponents of a proposed framework for allowing transgender students to participate in school sports in Minnesota has come under fire from anti-LGBT activists in the state, including from the Minnesota Child Protection League, which ran a full-page ad in the Minneapolis Star Tribune this week with the message: “A male wants to shower beside your 14-year-old daughter. Are YOU ok with that?”

At a hearing yesterday, the group that oversees high school sports in Minnesota tabled the proposal until December after speakers warned that the policy would amount to “transgender promotion” and because some students may have religious objections to transgender identity, it would “intentionally endorse one particular religious view over another.”

The Minnesota Child Protection League claims that its transphobic ad generated over 10,000 emails to the sports board. Andy Birkey with The Colu.mn reports that “most of the speakers in opposition” at yesterday’s hearing “had a connection with either the Child Protection League or the Minnesota Family Council,” a state affiliate of Focus on the Family’s political arm.

Birkey recorded some of the most incendiary rhetoric against the measure:

Attorney Renee Carlson was one of several speakers who were misinformed about the policy, specifically the sensitivity training element.

She said the policy forces schools to “embrace transgenderism through sensitivity training, training that the school does not have an option to decline according to this policy” and “imposes a narrative regarding human sexuality that is different from my own as a parent and leaves no other options.”

Becky Swenson asked, “How much will it cost to provide training? She lamented that OutFront Minnesota was consulted about the policy and said. “I wonder if the true goal isn’t transgender promotion… I’m sad to see that any disagreement is called hate speech.”

Religious school also testified that they objected to the proposed policy on religious ground.

Dr. Jeff Mattner of the Association of Christian Schools International asked the board not to step on the rights of religious schools to exercise their faith and convictions.”

Rev. Fredric Hinz of the Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod, a Lutheran denomination that rejects LGBT rights and advocated ex-gay conversion therapy, echoed some of MNCPL’s misinformation. “We are also disappointed that the proposed policy makes no apparent efforts to acknowledge the financial burden that it may impose on participating schools,” he said. “We find it ironic that while going to great lengths to advocate for greater sensitivity to the concern of transgender students, the proposed policy seems to lack any sensitivity to the vast majority of student athletes who may be forced to forfeit their privacy rights in sharing public facilities.”

He added that his faith rejects people being transgender.

“It is a policy that presumes that our true essence as human beings is somehow separable from our bodies that our bodies are somehow meaningless. This is a view which stands in direct contradiction of the religious views of the vast majority of students and their parents…to adopt this policy would be to intentionally endorse one particular religious view over another.”

Brian Sullivan head of Maranatha Christian Academy and Living Word Christian Center said he opposed it because of “deeply held religious conviction… whether it’s intended or not, it discriminates against these schools on the basis of religion.”

Michele Lentz of the Minnesota Child Protection League said her group is not spreading misinformation about the issue and defended her ad. “If you ran an ad, we wouldn’t have had to. Now parents know.” She challenged the very idea of transgender people. “The underlying assumption is that gender is a choice and not a matter of biology, which is absurd but that is what is at the heart of the controversy.”

Anti-LGBT Author Calls Trans People 'Pathological Narcissists'

On yesterday’s edition of “Sandy Rios in the Morning,” anti-LGBT activist and lecturer Dale O’Leary discussed her book, “The Gender Agenda,” which is about the purportedly harmful implications of transgender rights.

O’Leary told Rios that transgender identity in trans women is the result of a lack of “masculine” authority in childhood and an unhealthy attachment to mothers, which in turn makes “these people covet something [femininity] that they don’t have and can never get.”

The pursuit of a gender transition, Rios agreed, is motivated by envy and is wholly self-serving, failing to account for “what happens to the family, what happens to the wife, what happens to the children” of trans women in this scenario. O’Leary could only conclude that transgender people are inherently “pathological narcissists” who disregard the consequences their actions have on others to fulfill their vain desires.

O’Leary lamented that transgender people are sometimes encouraged by parents, doctors and psychologists who do not insist on correcting gender-nonconforming behavior and let children explore their own identity instead. She also blamed recent bans on ex-gay conversion therapy for minors in states like California and New Jersey for the growing acceptance of trans identity.

“Not giving these children therapy, when they are so clearly symptomatic of gender identity disorder, is child abuse,” she said. Instead of providing them with the help they apparently need, medical practitioners who don’t force gender conformity onto children are “conspiring with parents to keep the child locked in a mental disorder.”

Speaker Boehner's Secret Vault

Six months later, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) is still locked away by House GOP leadership. Take action with People For the American Way.
PFAW

Our ENDA mission started with Senator Kennedy

Eighteen years later, five after his passing, we are still working to complete the mission that Senator Kennedy laid before the nation. We are keeping the pressure on all of Congress to pass ENDA. The time is now!
PFAW

Where is Speaker Boehner hiding all the good bills like ENDA?

Senators who stood on the right side of history and voted for passage should be thanked. Senators who stood with anti-gay extremists should hear your disappointment. There are more instructions here and here, and you can always reach them by dialing 202-224-3121. As we move on to the House, if you have not added your name already, sign our petition now to keep the pressure on all of Congress to pass ENDA. The time is now!
PFAW

Scenes from today's ENDA debate - final votes tomorrow

The final Senate votes on ENDA will take place tomorrow, starting at 11:45 am EST. Now is your last chance to call your senators. There are more instructions here and here, and you can always reach both of them by dialing 202-224-3121. Don’t forget to sign our petition. The time is now – say yes to common sense and no to anti-gay extremists – pass ENDA!
PFAW

Scenes from the floor on the second day of ENDA debate

Today's speeches have already begun, and amendment votes are also in progress. Please keep calling the Senate. There are more instructions here and here, and you can always reach both of your senators by dialing 202-224-3121. Don’t forget to sign our petition. The time is now – say yes to common sense and no to anti-gay extremists – pass ENDA!
PFAW

Scenes from the floor on the first day of ENDA debate

From letters to alerts and more, the entire PFAW family has been working on ENDA. We still need your help. Please keep calling the Senate as this week's debate continues. There are more instructions here and here, and you can always reach both of your senators by dialing 202-224-3121. Don’t forget to sign our petition. The time is now – say yes to common sense and no to anti-gay extremists – pass ENDA!
PFAW

Senators Pryor and Manchin join list of ENDA supporters, contact your senators now

ENDA and workplace fairness for all have a clear majority on their side, but every vote is still critical. Thank those already in support for protecting LGBT workers. Tell those who aren't yet on board to say yes to common sense and no to anti-gay extremists.
PFAW

Senator Nelson cosponsors ENDA, leaves 3 votes to go, contact your senators now

Every vote will be critical to passage. Thank those already in support for protecting LGBT workers. Tell those who aren't yet on board to say yes to common sense and no to anti-gay extremists.
PFAW

Leader Reid announces ENDA vote – contact Senate now

Every vote will be critical to passage. Thank those already in support for protecting LGBT workers. Tell those who aren't yet on board to say yes to common sense and no to anti-gay extremists.
PFAW

Put this toolkit to good use and call your Senators today, "pass ENDA now!"

The government may be shut down, but Congress is still on the job, and we need to show them that they need to get back to work not only on the budget but on all of the urgent issues that we care about.
PFAW

New documentary revisits the climate change we all should want

It was February 12, 2008. 15-year-old Lawrence “Larry” King, who had begun openly exploring a female expression of his gender identity, and 14-year-old Brandon McInerney were in a computer lab at E.O. Green Junior High School in Oxnard, California. With the flash of two gunshots, Larry was off to the hospital, fighting for his life in a battle that he would soon lose; and Brandon was under arrest, later tried as an adult and sentenced to 21 years. Never would their teacher and their classmates be the same.
PFAW

PFAW Releases New Toolkit on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act

First introduced in 1994, ENDA has been introduced in every subsequent session of Congress except one, including its introduction this April by a bipartisan group of lawmakers in the House and Senate. Advocates in Congress and on the ground believe that the growing momentum surrounding LGBT equality should help ENDA move forward this year.
PFAW

Employment Non-Discrimination Act: Judging Employees by Their Work Performance, Not by Who They Are or Who They Love

First introduced in 1994, ENDA has been introduced in every subsequent session of Congress except one, including its introduction this April by a bipartisan group of lawmakers in the House and Senate. Advocates in Congress and on the ground believe that the growing momentum surrounding LGBT equality should help ENDA move forward this year.

Delaware Passes Historic Transgender Anti-Discrimination Bill

Last Tuesday Delaware Governor Jack Markell wrote that in his state, it is high time “our laws reflect our values.”  The bill in question was the Gender Identity Nondiscrimination Act of 2013, which adds gender identity to the state’s hate crime prevention and non-discrimination laws.  As Gov. Markell pointed out,

“Under our State's laws, it is currently legal to fire someone, deny them housing, or throw them out of a restaurant simply because they are transgender. This is simply not the Delaware way…”

And it’s not the American way. With bipartisan support in the state House and Senate, the bill passed the Delaware legislature and was signed into law by Gov. Markell Wednesday evening, making Delaware the 17th state with an employment non-discrimination law covering gender identity in addition to sexual orientation.

This is a profound victory for transgender Delawareans like Jay Campbell, who has so far felt unable to come out in his workplace. Campbell told the News Journal of Wilmington earlier this month,

“Without basic protection from discrimination, I can’t afford to tell my employer. I can’t obtain health coverage for the fear I’ll be outed and fired.”

Campbell shares this concern with other transgender – as well as lesbian, gay, and bisexual – people across the country.  In the majority of U.S. states, it remains legal to fire someone for being LGBT. This means that far too many people find themselves forced to choose between risking their livelihoods and undertaking the painful work of hiding who they are, day after day.

Today’s victory in Delaware underscores the need for employment protections for LGBT workers in every state through the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.  This common-sense solution would help ensure that employees like Campbell are judged by how well they do their job, not by who they are or who they love.

PFAW

Delaware Senate Passes Transgender Anti-Discrimination Bill

Yesterday afternoon the Delaware Senate passed a historic civil rights bill adding gender identity to the state’s hate crime prevention and non-discrimination laws.  Despite damaging lies about transgender Americans pushed by organizations like Focus on the Family and the Delaware Family Policy Council, the state Senate approved the bill in an 11-7 vote.

Sarah McBride of Equality Delaware said,

“The Senate vote today inspired a lot of hope in me and I’m sure that’s true for many other transgender people across Delaware. It was inspiring to see a majority of the Senators stand up for a group that has seen disproportionate levels of discrimination and violence.”

If enacted, Delaware will become the 17th state with an employment non-discrimination law that covers gender identity in addition to sexual orientation. 
 

PFAW
Share this page: Facebook Twitter Digg SU Digg Delicious