State Rep. Alan Seabaugh, R-City on a Hill, wants to make sure them gays don’t get all uppity when they’re discriminated against. After all, they’re gay and what not.
The Shreveport Republican is sponsoring House Bill 402, which a prominent Louisiana LGBT advocacy group characterizes as “a stealth attempt” to ensure that employment protections for LGBT workers in Louisiana do not become the law of this land. The bill even goes so far as to supersede local non-discrimination laws.
Presented as an attempt to unclog the state court system of all those pesky frivolous lawsuits brought by gay people who are fired due to their unimpeachable flair for interior design, Seabaugh's bill plays from the GOP “voter fraud” playbook: that is, it addresses a “problem” that doesn’t exist because the rep's real aim is to suppress something he doesn’t like. Black people voting for Democrats, gays and lesbians having employment protections ... whatever. As Matthew Patterson, legislative co-coordinator of Equality Louisiana, points out, “State courts do not face an excessive number of frivolous employment discrimination suits, and they are capable of determining which suits have merit.”
“I can’t get a damn thing done because of all these frivolous gay lawsuits!” said no judge ever.
Where Seabaugh’s bill goes from nakedly discriminatory against our gay neighbors and family members and trips headlong into jackbooted bull crappery is its override of local anti-discrimination laws. Several municipalities in the state have such laws on their books, but if Seabaugh’s “I’m secretly gay therefore I’m publicly anti-gay” bill becomes law it would prevent citizens in those jurisdictions from seeking the employment protections afforded them by their own communities.
The gays do not like this legislation. Libertarians should abhor this legislation, which screams overreach. Adds Equality Louisiana’s Patterson: “Not only is this bill an attempt at backdoor discrimination, but it will undermine the authority of local city and parish governments to protect their citizens.”