The Democrat-controlled House of Representatives recently passed the historic Equality Act, which strengthens LGBTQ+ protections across the board — but especially within the federal government, where former president Trump consistently removed or dumbed down those protections. Biden also revoked Trump’s ban on trans individuals serving in the armed forces. Only a few Republicans joined the effort to pass the Equality Act, which is unlikely to pass with majority support in the Senate, which is evenly split.
That’s because several moderate Democrats have already displayed skepticism about the wording of the bill, which remains controversial within the government even though 70 percent of Americans — and majorities in every state — support laws that strengthen LGBTQ+ rights.
Before Biden entered office, the job of any discrimination lawyer was only getting harder — even though the increased spate of hate crimes against minority populations was growing during the Trump era. We have Trump’s anti-LGBTQ+ stance to thank for that.
Without the Equality Act, Americans can still be fired or evicted based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Republicans who oppose the law frequently say that this is not true — but it is.
A Washington Examiner article recently written by an anonymous individual: “The Equality Act’s purpose is to add to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to prohibit housing and workplace discrimination on the basis of ‘sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity.’ But this is unnecessary because the Supreme Court’s recent decision Bostock v. Clayton County already prohibits such discrimination.”
The author adds that Liberals in the Senate know all about the aforementioned decision, but they are sneaking “anti-science” ideas into the Equality Act to implement protections based on gender identity.
Representative Al Green (D – Texas) said, “You used God to enslave my foreparents. You used God to segregate me in schools. You used God to put me in the back of the bus. Have you no shame? God created every person in the room. Are you saying that God made a mistake?”
Green made a powerful point: conservative members in government have used religion to justify every argument they’ve ever made regarding discrimination, equality, or civil rights — and they continue to do so even in 2021.
He made those comments in response to Representative Greg Steube (R – Florida), who said, “‘A woman must not wear men’s clothing nor a man wear women’s clothing, for the Lord your God detests anyone who does this.’ When men or women claim to be able to choose their own sexual identity, they’re making a statement that God did not know what he was doing when he created them.”
The irony is that Steube obviously doesn’t know that sexual identity, sexual orientation, and gender identity are all different: you might choose your sexual identity, but you can’t choose your sexual orientation. But gender identity is used to describe feelings, more similar to sexual orientation in definition. “Identity” is always a choice, but who you are is not. Republicans would do well to take note of actual science rather than relying on the fringe worries of only a few.