In a story published today on Bay Windows, veteran gay journalist Rex Wockner talks about the delay in moving ENDA forward in Congress, where the bill is mired in legal tinkering on the arcane (to us) issues of disparate impact, lawyers fees, and double-recovery.
“Disparate impact” is when a policy or practice has the effect of being discriminatory even if that was not the intention. The article provided by HRC said the latest ENDA modifications will explicitly block disparate-impact cases on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity — even as they will remain possible on the basis of race, color, gender, religion and national origin. “Double recovery” would involve the filing of two similar discrimination cases under both ENDA and Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. Some courts have ruled that Title VII’s ban on gender-based discrimination extends to discrimination against transgender people. Finally, the lawyers plan to prevent the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and other administrative agencies from awarding attorney fees to the winning side in cases based on ENDA. The EEOC does not award attorney fees in other types of discrimination cases; that is done by courts.
Some activists are unhappy with the new delay and the details of what’s being reworked. “Gay Americans have never had protections from discrimination in the workplace,” activist and political consultant Steve Hildebrand said in an interview. “Year after year the LGBT community asks Congress to pass ENDA so we have the same protection from discrimination that every other American has had. Now we see staff attorneys weakening the bill and causing unfortunate delays. We need to generate tens of thousands of calls to members of Congress and demand full equality under the law now.”
As I have said here many times, I consider ENDA to be the single-most important piece of LGBT rights legislation. Please hit this HRC link where you can easily urge your legislators to get off their asses on workplace discrimination.
Yesterday the Traditional Values Coalition issued this typically hysterical warning to Christians about the possible passage of ENDA.
ENDA will force businesses, public schools (pre-kindergarten through 12th grade), as well as Christian entities such as religious broadcasters, Christian bookstores, etc., to accommodate the sexual practices of cross-dressers, drag queens, transsexuals, and even she-males (individuals who undergo only a partial sex change operation). Will private Christian entities such as camps, pre-schools, grade and high schools, be forced to hire she-males? Under ENDA it is likely.
Make no mistake about it: ENDA will also directly target public schools and help fuel the LGBT agenda on campuses. Imagine a school teacher telling students he’s returning the next year as a woman. Will parents be free to opt their children out of a transsexual’s class? NO. Parents are already prevented from doing so by a similar law in California. Additionally, a recent Massachusetts court decision jailed a parent who disagreed with homosexual teaching in his child’s elementary school. Will children who are offended be considered bigots who need re-education? Probably, yes.
ENDA will federalize the sexual insanity taking place in California schools – thanks to a LGBT-dominated legislature and compliant governor. Children in California schools are captive to the LGBT political agenda. If ENDA passes, transsexuals, drag queens, cross-dressers and she-males will be federally-protected minority groups and can freely exploit our nation’s public school kids. ENDA is proposing newly invented rights for individuals who engage in a variety of bizarre sex acts. ENDA pits constitutional rights of religious freedom and free speech against individuals who cross-dress or engage in dangerous sexual activities.