Thursday, October 1, 2020

Heritage Yahoo: How the Equality Act Would be Harmful to Children

Heritage Foundation does not believe that liberty (depicted in the background) applies to LGBTQ people.
Surely no one is surprised that Heritage Foundation is staffed — at least in part — by anti-LGBTQ bigots. The organization employs Ryan T. Anderson who is no less toxic than a Klansman or Neo-Nazi.

Yes I am comparing Anderson to Klansmen and Nazis who are also conservative Christians. Heritage's Andrea Jones apparently reports to Ryan T. Anderson. Thursday, Jones does the expected with: 4 Ways the Equality Act Would Harm Children.

Ms. Jones is obsessed. Since mid-February she has written ten posts for Heritage's blog. Eight of those are anti-LGBTQ diatribes filled with lies and innacuracies.

Usually, Heritage spits out anti-LGBTQ venom in defense of Christianity. Today Andrea Jones' fangs are pointed at former VP Joe Biden but the agenda is strictly religious. She is trying to diminish support for Biden based upon his support for the Equality Act.

Aside from being obnoxious what she is doing is also illegal. She cannot claim to be writing on behalf of Heritage Action, a 501(c)4, when she identifies as writing on behalf of the DeVos Center which is part of Heritage Foundation, a 501(c)3. 501(c)3 organizations are prohibited from promotions on behalf of, or in opposition to, any candidate.

Biden's support of the Equality Act is inarguable. It is one of the reasons I intend to vote for him. If you do the math, about 40% of American families have a close member who is gay, bi or trans. Many of those family members will also vote for the former VP.

So let's get to the harms. These remind me of Maggie Gallagher's old saw that “gay marriage has consequences” in spite of the fact that she was never able to articulate what those consequences would be.
Heritage water fountains dispense a hypnotic agent
… rather than shielding Americans who identify as LGBT from unfair discrimination, the bill’s provisions would be weaponized by activists against anyone who disagrees with their radical and politicized ideology. This ideology is out of touch with the majority of Americans and would particularly harm vulnerable children.
Sentence structure! There is no “rather.” By adding sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 the greatest effect would be the prohibition of discrimination in public accommodations. Employment discrimination has already been ruled illegal: Bostock v. Clayton County.

I often wonder if these people ever listen to themselves. Unlike Ms. Jones, an LGBTQ person is not an adherent to an ideology. Saying otherwise is simply stupid. There is nothing to “disagree” with. That makes less sense than were Jones to say that she “disagrees” with my blue eyes. I'll get to the kiddies in a moment.

When people claim that nondiscrimination laws are weapons they are saying that they require the right to disobey the law in order to discriminate.

It is no different from the Neo-Nazi who is a member of the Christian Identity Church saying that his religion prohibits him from serving Jewish and Black people in his restaurant. A valid justification for discrimination does not exist.
Curriculum: The bill could lead to federal courts or future presidential administrations imposing a nationwide mandate to incorporate sexual orientation and gender identity into the curriculum in all public schools.
It could also require me to amputate my right testicle (or is it the left?). Not that there is anything wrong with teaching adolescents about sexual orientation or gender identity. People possess both of those things and that is a matter of inarguable scientific fact. But that is not part of the Equality Act.
Schools: The Equality Act would also affect children at school. First, it would mandate that schools across the country allow students who identify as transgender to access the opposite sex’s restrooms, locker rooms, and showers. It would also require them to allow biological males to compete on girls sports teams, where they have a clear physical advantage.
“Identify as transgender” is religious bullshit. Some children (not many, but a few) are transgender. There is absolutely nothing wrong with trans kids using gender-appropriate facilities. Do you really want Kai Shappley, a trans girl (at right), using the boys' room? And how about her right not to be stigmatized?

As for sports, there is nothing in the Equality Act that would preclude athletic conferences and school boards from establishing reasonable standards. The NCAA, for example, requires documentation of at least one year of testosterone suppression. The IOC tests testosterone levels. The supposed “clear physical advantage” has not been shown to exist in either NCAA or IOC sanctioned competitions.
The basis of anti-transgender bigotry
The arguments are entirely dishonest. This has nothing to do with the supposed safety of cisgender girls. Indeed there is no verified incident of a trans-girl ever harming a cis girl in a bathroom. It's just pretext. Nor does it have anything to do with athletics. If it did, they would try to work out a reasonable criteria to compete and they never do.

They have no interest in solving what they perceive is a problem.

The reality is that this is an effort to conform the world to ancient scripture. The very existence of transgender persons creates a contradiction to Genesis 1:27. The Catholic Church as said so explicitly.

Getting back to The Devil and Ms. Jones:
Other provisions of the bill could, under the guise of preventing bullying and harassment, require teachers and students to use the preferred names and pronouns of those who identify as transgender.
The above includes that nonsensical “could” again. It doesn't apply but even if it did, to the best of my knowledge no one has succumbed to the plague due to the use of gender-correct pronouns. Doing so, using correct pronouns, is not the equivalent of approval by people desperate to demonstrate their disapproval.
For the record, most Christians do not share Ms. Jones' beliefs or pronouncements. I am also amused when clearly radicalized people claim that LGBTQ people share a mythological radical agenda which is usually expressed as the intent to harm religious extremists.
Medicine: The Equality Act would require medical professionals to perform irreversible gender-transition procedures on minors, regardless of conscientious objection or best medical judgment.
Nonsense! No clinician is ever required to perform a procedure that they do not perform. I'll avoid the lengthy explanation but “irreversible gender-transition procedures on minors” is rhetorical bullshit. When they repeat it enough it becomes their truth.
Conversion “therapy” crackpottery while she is at it
The bill’s findings also pave the way for an eventual ban on any counseling intended to help children with gender dysphoria accept their bodies. Given that 80%-95% of children eventually come to identify with their biological sex if they do not undergo social transition, employing federal law to ban counseling for children is a mistake.
Aside from the crackpottery, Jones' pants are on fire. It is true that most kids grow out of gender dysphoria. Persistence of the condition correlates to its severity. The children who do grow out of the condition never transition in the first place.

Repeat after me:
  1. The Equality Act has nothing to do with banning conversion therapy.
  2. Gender identity conversion therapy is ineffective and extremely harmful.
Adoption, foster care, and parental rights: Finally, the Equality Act would significantly affect the child welfare system.

Faith-based adoption and foster care providers would risk losing federal funds if they decline to place children with same-sex couples. This in turn could lead to these providers being forced to close, displacing thousands of children and further straining an already overwhelmed system.
These services are funded by taxpayers. These agencies are doing the work of the state. They are not forced to close. Conservative Christian agencies are complying with state and local law.

The idea that children are displaced is baloney (the mouldy stuff that Joe Arpaio used to serve inmates). There are ample agencies who want to do this work in accordance with the law. Those foster children are simply re-assigned if an agency chooses to close (which they should not).

The effect is quite the opposite. Gay couples enlarge the pool of available foster and adoptive parents. The larger the pool, the better children are served.

After citing Heritage Foundation polls which have as much credibility as a third-rate political spinner:
The activist left has labeled all disagreement as bigotry, stifling the voices of those who raise concerns. Policies such as the Equality Act—which are being promoted by a presidential campaign and endorsed by one house of Congress—would turn the shield of anti-discrimination law into a sword to punish disagreement, with the youngest Americans as collateral damage.
Act like a bigot and be called a bigot. They would have fewer problems if they stopped            lying. “Disagreement” is opinion. There are no laws affecting opinions. People are expected to obey applicable laws whether they like them or not. Conformity with the law is based on conduct, not opinion.

Christian Privilege should not exist in a secular society with a secular body of law. Eventually one of our political parties will be forced to stop pandering to radical religious idealogues. In spite of constitutional prohibitions the lunatic fringe has enjoyed a measure of success.

We are one of the very few countries in the industrialized world where religious zealots are given this kind of influence. People like Ryan T. Anderson and Andrea Jones want America to look like a Christian version of Iran. We cannot allow that to happen any more than orthodox Rabbis legally banning the sale of shrimp.

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