Saturday, July 23, 2022

Torches & Pitchforks Are On The Way

Remember that the crazies are a minority, so if you want to stop them, register to vote and VOTE!


After Roe, Republicans sharpen attacks on gay and transgender rights


Days after the Supreme Court overturned the right to abortion, Michigan’s Republican candidates for governor were asked if it was also time to roll back constitutional protections for gay rights.
None of the five candidates came to the defense of same-sex marriage.
“They need to revisit it all,” one candidate, Garrett Soldano, said at the debate, in Warren, Mich.
“Michigan’s constitution,” said another candidate, Ralph Rebandt, “says that for the betterment of society, marriage is between a man and a woman.”
Since the Supreme Court decision last month overturning Roe v. Wade, anti-gay rhetoric and calls to roll back established LGBTQ protections have grown bolder. And while Republicans in Congress appear deeply divided about same-sex marriage — nearly 50 House Republicans on Tuesday joined Democrats in supporting a bill that would recognize same-sex marriages at the federal level — many Republican officials and candidates across the country have made attacking gay and transgender rights a party norm this midterm season.
In Texas, Attorney General Ken Paxton said after the Roe reversal that he would be “willing and able” to defend at the Supreme Court any law criminalizing sodomy enacted by the Legislature. Before that, the Republican Party of Texas adopted a platform that calls homosexuality “an abnormal lifestyle choice.”
In Utah, the Republican president of the state Senate, Stuart Adams, said he would support his state’s joining with others to press the Supreme Court to reverse the right of same-sex couples to wed. In Arizona, Kari Lake, a candidate for governor endorsed by Donald Trump, affirmed in a June 29 debate her support for a bill barring children from drag shows — the latest target of supercharged rhetoric on the right.
And in Michigan’s governor’s race, Soldano released an ad belittling the use of specific pronouns by those who do not conform to traditional gender roles (“My pronouns: Conservative/Patriot”) and accusing “the woke groomer mafia” of wanting to indoctrinate children.
Some Democrats and advocates for LGBTQ communities say the Republican attacks have deepened their concerns that the overturning of Roe could undermine other cases built on the same legal foundation — the right to privacy provided in the 14th Amendment — and lead to increases in hate crimes as well as suicides of LGBTQ youth.
“The dominoes have started to fall, and they won’t just stop at one,” said Attorney General Dana Nessel of Michigan, a Democrat who was the first openly gay person elected to statewide office there. “People should see the connection between reproductive rights, LGBTQ rights, women’s rights, interracial marriage — these things are all connected legally.”
This year, Republican-led states have already passed numerous restrictions on transgender young people and on school discussions of sexual orientation and gender.
In June, Louisiana became the 18th state, all with GOP-led legislatures, to ban transgender students from playing on sports teams that match their gender identity. Laws to prohibit transitioning medical treatments to people younger than 18, such as puberty blockers, hormones, and surgeries — which advocates call gender-affirming care — have been enacted by four states. And after Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida signed a law in March banning classroom discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity in early grades, more than a dozen other states moved to imitate it.
In all, more than 300 bills to restrict LGBTQ rights have been introduced this year in 23 states, according to the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBTQ advocacy organization.
The bills under consideration focus not on same-sex marriage but on transgender youth, on restricting school curricula and on allowing groups to refuse services to LGBTQ people based on religious faith. Most of the measures have no chance of passage because of opposition from Democrats and moderate Republicans.
Still, the Human Rights Campaign had characterized 2021 as the worst year in recent history for anti-LGBTQ laws after states passed seven measures banning transgender athletes from sports teams that match their gender identity. So far in 2022, those numbers are already higher.
Officials and television commentators on the right have accused opponents of some of those new restrictions of seeking to “sexualize” or “groom” children. Grooming refers to the tactics used by sexual predators to manipulate their victims, but it has become deployed widely on the right to brand gay and transgender people as child molesters, evoking an earlier era of homophobia.
On the right, the transgender restrictions have been pushed by advocacy groups that have long opposed LGBTQ rights and in some cases consulted in the drafting of legislation. And on the left, the wave of legislation has been used by liberal organizations to mobilize their base, fundraise and help turn out voters in midterm primaries in a hostile national political climate for Democrats.
In Arizona, where Republicans control the Legislature and the governor’s office, a law enacted this year bars trans girls from competing on sports teams aligned with their gender and on transitioning surgery for people younger than 18.
“My colleagues on the right have spent more time demonizing me and the LGBTQ community than I’ve ever seen,” said Hernandez, the state representative, who is running in the Democratic primary for Congress on Aug. 2 in a Tucson-area seat.


JiEL said...

Thank «God» I live in Canada, Montreal.

SteveXS said...

I have friends who've considered moving up your way. But I think reason will prevail in November. We have to work and hope and hope and work to win.

Tex said...

I sure hope you're right, Steve.