Monday, July 11, 2016

Take a look at the men, women, & children the GOP platform unfairly targets

If the GOP wants to gain some degree of power and credibility beyond its base and the Fox News crazies, the party needs to divest from members of the religious right.

Today we have seen how much pull people like the Family Research Council's Tony Perkins has in the Grand Old Party by what members of its platform committee adopted as official party policy. And almost all of it has a nasty homophobic vent.

An amendment offered by the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins offered support for the controversial practice of “conversion therapy” for children who identify as LGBT.

 . . . The subcommittee strengthened the platform’s language in opposition to same-sex marriage. The initial draft circulated late Sunday to committee members stated: “Our laws and our government’s regulations should recognize marriage as the union of one man and one woman and actively promote married family life as the basis of a stable and prosperous society. For that reason, as explained elsewhere In this platform, we do not accept the Supreme Court’s redefinition of marriage and we urge its reversal, whether through judicial reconsideration or a constitutional amendment returning control over marriage to the States.”

And of course:

  Republican delegates adopted tough language opposing the Obama administration’s policy on transgender schoolkids in a platform subcommittee hearing Monday morning.

 . . . Tony Perkins, a delegate from Louisiana and the president of the socially conservative Family Research Council, said the party should include the position to support the 11 states that are suing the Obama administration over the policy. West Virginia delegate Melody Potter said, “I believe it’s time for Republicans to take a stand on it. It’s a safety issue.”

Safety for who? The "predator in the women's restroom" talking point/urban legend has been continuously refuted.  If those working on the GOP platform really cared about safety, they would get to know the transgender community before using their power to demonize them. Such as the folks in the video at the top of this post.
Video courtesy of The National Center for Transgender Equality

News brief special: GOP convention promises to be surreal with mixture of extreme homophobia, Trump, & Caitlyn Jenner

The GOP has gone anti-lgbt buck wild in their party platform. LGBTs, in our own little way, will strike back by the airing of the above commercial during their convention next week. See the article in the news briefs 

RNC quietly passes anti-LGBT resolution - So the Republican Party is creating its platform for the 2016 election. Did you really think that they would welcome us with open arms? 

Is Trump Letting Religious Right Leaders Have Their Way With GOP Platform - A "religious liberty" amendment, an anti-marriage equality amendment, and an anti-transgender amendment. What do you think the answer to that question may be?  

Transgender Rights Ad To Air During Republican Convention On Fox News - Ah yes, the nice surprise in the middle of the "Trump coronation." See the video above  

Tony Perkins Wants The GOP To Endorse Ex-Gay Conversion Therapy - Interesting. The only anti-lgbt amendment the GOP didn't want

Caitlyn Jenner will attend LGBT Republican event at GOP convention - And things are going to get surreal. I wanna say something so bad but I will just leave the post here with no comment.

Repost - Why I get a nagging feeling about the phrase 'religious liberty'

Editor's note - in lieu of the recent situation in which a baker has refused to make a birthday cake for a married lesbian couple due to her "religious beliefs," I am reposting this 2011 piece I wrote on "religious liberty."

I think we are in the stage I predicted. The anti-lgbt industry slowly but steadily made "religious liberty" a repeated talking point. Now they are prepared to take argument as far as it can go:

Those who are my friends know that I am a serious fan of the 1970s detective drama Columbo. The thing I really loved about this show was the fact of how the character of police detective Columbo never considered a murder case completely simple. He never bought into the idea of an "open-and-shut" case if he had a nagging feeling, no matter how insignificant it was.

That nagging feeling is what I get when I hear about  marriage clerks, hotel owners, Catholic adoption agencies, and recently - cake bakers who refuse to serve gay couples. No doubt you have heard about them and will probably hear a lot more as religious right groups trying to hinder marriage equality will canonize these folks as "saints and martyrs" besieged by so-called radical gay activists supposedly trying to force them choose between their livelihood and religious freedom.

In fact they have a term for this sort of thing. They call it "religious liberty."

There is a certain simplicity to these cases which garners them a degree of support. Some of these folks (excluding Catholic charities who have no right to taxpayer money to discriminate and marriage clerks who should put the needs of constituents over their own desires) seems to have a right to serve whomever they wish. And one could even make the case that they are in fact forced to choose between their livelihoods and their "religious liberty."

But then there goes that nagging feeling again. These cases aren't as simple as they are made out. What about the rights of couples refused service? No matter how you attempt to soften the blow, the idea that someone will  not serve you because of how they inaccurately view you still hurts. It's dehumanizing, it's cruel, and it's embarrassing.

In a recent situation in Iowa, a cake baker scheduled an appointment with a lesbian couple who desired her services only to use that time to not only tell them no, but also to criticize their sexual orientation.

Then that same cake baker made several news appearances to decry about how she was victim, backed by several religious right groups spinning the same talking points.