From: Subject: Date: April 21, 2005 3:53:51 PM CDT Hankblog: Amen brother.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Amen brother.

David Neiwert at Orcinus has always been an enjoyable read for me, but I rarely link to him because his posts are usually quite long and involved analyses of various issues in the world today. However, this post really bears reading:

One of the many holes in civil-rights protections for minorities in Washington state is that it remains legal to discriminate against gays and lesbians -- in hiring and employment practices, as well as in housing.

It's one of our blue state's ugly little secrets, largely because the GOP remains a potent force. Changing the law, you see, would advance the "homosexual agenda," even if everyone knows that this kind of discrimination isn't right.

So with Democrats finally in charge of both houses of the Lege, party leaders had their sights set on rectifying that oversight. After a bill adding gays and lesbians to RCW 49.60, the state's anti-discrimination law, passed the House readily, some late maneuvering, and a couple of DINOs, have helped to apparently scuttle the bill in the Senate.

Interestingly, there was this:
The Senate Republican caucus yesterday handed out a five-page "talking points" document opposing the measure. One of the talking points states: "This bill establishes minority status for individuals based on sexual behaviors many believe they choose to engage in."

Ah yes. We've heard this line before. Because being gay is a "chosen behavior," it is undeserving of civil rights protections.

It's the same reason given by many evangelicals -- and particularly black and minority evangelicals, and people who claim they support civil rights -- for not supporting gays and lesbians in hate-crime protections: "You can't compare being gay to being black. One's immutable, one's chosen."

Well, yes, this is true when it comes to race. And even ethnicity. These are, after all, two of the three main legs of anti-discrimination and hate-crimes laws.

But it's not true of the third leg of these laws: religion. Last I checked, this too was a "chosen behavior."

This is something I've said and believed for a while, but David just brings it home so eloquently. Give the man a look, and nose around his other stuff if you have time.