Monday, December 12, 2011

LGBTQ youth caught in the crossfire of phony 'religious liberty'

As more information is coming out about the former Macy's employee who was fired for harassing a transgender customer, the story continues to keep getting disturbing.

Natalie Johnson - with the help of the religious right group, the Liberty Counsel - is suing Macy's claiming that the store violated her religious beliefs because of its policy of allowing transgender customers to use the women's changing room. Johnson is claiming that her religious beliefs prevents her from allowing transgender customers to use the women's changing room.

Here are some new details to the story, courtesy of Johnson (which is kind of stupid because it wrecks her entire case):

She approached the customer after she was leaving the changing room and insulted her, calling her a man.

The next day when informed of Macy's policy of allowing individuals of going into whichever changing room they wanted, she said that she refused to comply with the policy. That was why she was fired.

However, to me, the following is the most disturbing detail of them all:

The transgender customer was a teenager.

All of the negative lgbtq messages out there for our children to see is bad enough. But this situation, to me, is the worse. To have someone come up to you in a public setting and accost you in regards to who they assume you are had to be intimidating.

Luckily the young lady stood up for herself and had friends with her.

But this is just another case of how the phony cry of  "religious liberty"  has the potential to harm our children.

There are two cases on appeal in the courts of two women demanding to be let back into their graduate program at their prospective colleges. Both women, Julea Ward and Jennifer Keeton, are claiming that they were unfairly dismissed because their "religious beliefs" about homosexuality. In reality, neither woman wanted to counsel gays.

And if that's not bad enough, both women expressed a desire to be school guidance counselors.

Naturally their cases have been taken by the Alliance Defense Fund, another religious right group.

Certainly there is no deliberate attempt to potentially undermine the well-being of lgbtq youth by these folks and the groups taking their cases.

But it doesn't erase the fact that if the courts fall for their phony talk of "religious liberty," the undermining of lgbtq youth is a strong possibility.

Email Macy's and send the company your support for standing up for our rights and dignity. And most of all, tell Macy's to not back down.

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Anonymous said...

I'm 21 and I still lie and claim I'm shopping for my sister. I can't imagine how brave that girl must be to be out as a teenager.

Hopefully this story will make other transpeople realize the law is on their side *well, not always* and they don't need to hide.

John said...

I don't see how this employee has a leg to stand on. I presume she knew of Macy's policies when she was hired. You don't get to pick and choose which of your employer's policies you will and won't follow. If she disagreed with any of Macy's policies, she should not have accepted employment with them.