Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Written by Walter Pierce
Much, but not enough, has been written about the Louisiana Family Forum’s latest push back against the radical gay agenda. By radical gay agenda I mean gay people having the same rights and civil protections as everyone else. Because they’re like everyone else, except they’re not wrecking the institution of marriage like us straight people have been doing since Bible days, although I’m sure if more states gave gays the right to marry they could finally make a worthy contribution.
At this writing, House Bill 1101 by Rep. John Schroder of Covington is in the House Education Committee while Senate Bill 217 by Sen. A.G. Crowe of Slidell is before the full Senate.
Crowe and Schroder will tell you their bills aren’t about gay people. Let’s be nice and call the lawmakers mendacious. Or delusional. Anything with LFF’s imprimatur on it is about gays. And creationism. And a bucolic white America of God-fearing nuclear families, chirping birds, packed pews and moral conviction that never actually existed in an abundance uniform enough to say that’s who we were and look at what we’re becoming.
Crowe’s bill is ostensibly about barring government entities in Louisiana from setting their own rules about the anti-discrimination policies of companies with which they contract; because state contract law only enumerates race, religion, national ancestry, age, sex and disability as worthy of protection. Sexual orientation, special needs and a host of other characteristics are not, according to the great state of Louisiana, worthy of equal protection.
But the state Department of Education’s charter application form includes sexual orientation as a protected characteristic. Crowe’s bill would undo that. In fact, it appears to prevent any governmental body — a city council, a school board, a housing authority — from insisting that entities with which it does business don’t discriminate against gays. That may float buoyantly in Ouachita Parish where the hoodie problem is not of the Trayvon Martin variety. Not so much in Orleans.
Anything with LFF’s imprimatur on it is about gays. And creationism.
Crowe’s bill is really about allowing private, state-funded charter schools, which will likely proliferate exponentially in coming years, to tell gay students they’re not welcome.
Crowe insists the law has nothing to do with that, a position echoed by state Superintendent John White. But as The Times-Picayune’s Stephanie Grace pointed out last week, the charter school aspect is virtually all that was discussed during a Senate committee hearing on the bill a couple of weeks ago. An LSU law professor speaking in support of the bill acknowledged as much. A board member for a New Orleans parochial charter testified for the bill, essentially saying that discriminating against gays is a religious prerogative.
Crowe was present and could have easily clarified his bill’s intent. He didn’t. It’s about the gay kids.
Schroder’s bill, meanwhile, is superficially an anti-bullying bill, but it parrots so-called “license to bully” bills that thankfully failed in other states this year. The pernicious dagger sheathed in Schroder’s bill is a caveat giving an exemption for acts that would otherwise be considered bullying as long as they’re motivated by “religious, philosophical or political views.”
Rather than give charter schools and homophobes — and the children of homophobes — tacit permission via this legislative winking and nodding to discriminate and bully, why not fully enumerate in state law characteristics including sexual orientation that should be protected from discrimination and bullying? There are bills in both chambers of the Legislature that would do exactly that — bills that will likely fail under pressure from the LFF, because this is about the radical gay agenda, that bogeyman in garish, rainbow-striped hot pants trotted out by the religious right to cool the loins of godly men and shrivel the wombs of righteous women. Crowe and Schroder are legislating at the bidding of the LFF, the most virulently anti-equality group in Louisiana and one with close ties to the Family Research Council, which is listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
There’s nothing insidious about the gay agenda. Gay people can no more recruit converts than Marcus Bachmann can pray away the gay. News flash: Gays — to riff on Lady Gaga — are born that way. They can’t make more gays, but they can use legal mechanisms at their disposal to promote and institutionalize tolerance.
With a phalanx of widely publicized anti-gay politicians who turned out to be closeted homosexuals lining up behind them, Crowe and Schroder might have more in common than just being lawmakers from St. Tammany Parish.
The eclectic vibe of summer
Three bedroom River Ranch cottage or four bedroom Youngsville traditional home
The parent of Investar Bank says its second-quarter earnings fell to $1.1 million or 26 cents a share from $1.7 million of 44 cents a share in the same period a year ago.
1,554 rigs were exploring for oil and 315 for gas. Two were listed as miscellaneous. A year ago there were 1,770 active rigs.
The Saints are being cautious in an effort to minimize risk of re-injury.
Most personal auto insurance policies exclude coverage when people charge money to drive others in their personal vehicles.
In this letter to the editor, Lafayette Parish School Board member Shelton Cobb (the board's former president) weighs in on the difficulty behind this year's budget process, calling out a number of his fellow board members over their inability to drop their power struggle with the superintendent and make the interests of the students a top priority.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
LSU Health Sciences Center says people with a common, hard-to-treat kind of lung cancer can join a new national trial to test drugs faster.
As New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton and general manager Mickey Loomis spoke about the opening of training camp, steep, tree-covered mountains were in full view behind them.
The family of fallen cyclist Lon Lomas is speaking out after the release this week of the man charged with his death.
"The solutions are obvious: undo consolidation, or amend the charter to make this hybrid attempt at a new form of government work better."
Friday's Blogs from the Bog!
A refreshing twist at a Lafayette institution comes served with a black bean salad stuffed avocado
Marijuana source of disputes for HOAs; experts say still safe to fly; Russian-supported attacks on Ukraine and more national and international news for Friday, July 25, 2014.
Louisiana's 21 casinos took in $203.5 million statewide in June, edging up one-half of a percentage point from a year earlier.
Three bedroom Sunset Victorian or three bedroom Opelousas Acadian home
Louisiana designer commissioned for NYC Awards gift
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education is considering whether to get involved in a lawsuit against Gov. Bobby Jindal for his attempts to undermine use of the Common Core education standards in Louisiana's public schools.
Business First Bank has announced plans for a Baton Rouge market expansion through a merger deal with American Gateway Financial Corp.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The latest meeting of a south Louisiana flood board that stirred political turmoil with a lawsuit against the oil and gas industry is taking place amid uncertainty over the future of the lawsuit — and the board's own membership.
The photos taken nearly a mile under the Gulf of Mexico are so clear that small holes are visible in a lifeboat that may have gone down or been scuttled when a passenger ship was sunk by a Nazi submarine in 1942.
Advocate columnist and Jindal shill Quin Hillyer has been against the New Orleans levee board lawsuit from day one, but a recent piece targeting author/activist John Barry prompted the perfect rebuttal from the board’s former vice-president, who takes Hillyer to task on just about every distorted claim he’s made on the issue.
INDEats and EatLafayette want to give one lucky foodie and friends the most memorable meal — here’s how you can win
Thousands of people who bought health insurance through the marketplace created by the federal health care overhaul face price hikes next year that could top 10 percent.
Three bedroom traditional Lafayette home or three bedroom Breaux Bridge home
Style market slated for old Artesia
The city prosecutor has released the case file for Lafayette Parish School Board member Tehmi Chassion’s simple battery complaint against Superintendent Pat Cooper, and the seven witness statements given to police illustrate two very different scenarios.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.