Sunday, March 19, 2006

Sexual Orientation Defined, Part II

We're continuing our discussion of the linguistic, conceptual, and legal confusion being sown by homosexual activists regarding the meaning of "sexual orientation." (See Part I.) In recent years, they've added a new qualifier to what may not be discriminated against: so-called "gender identity and expression", and then they further add "actual or perceived". This will cover any conceivable weirdness and public displays you can imagine, plus allow incredible latitude for litigation. Who will determine one's "identity" (presumably, only that individual), or what is included in "expression", or what the perceiver "perceived"?

We've read in Bay Windows that Rep. Carl Sciortino will be pushing a bill including these phrases in the state legislataure. And U.S. Rep. Barney Frank is doing the same at the federal level.

In Maine, a new law including such language was passed in 2005. It goes farther than any other in the country. The Christian Civic Leage of Maine (which led the fight to stop it) explained: "The law prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation in employment, housing, public accommodations, credit and education. It defines sexual orientation as 'a person's actual or perceived heterosexuality, bisexuality, homosexuality or gender identity or expression.' "

And now there's a bill in Vermont proposing essentially the same thing. Kevin Blier of Vermont Renewal writes that House Bill 478:

... is intended to add "gender identity and expression" to the list of protected classes in housing, real-estate purchases, employment and membership in employee organizations, such as labor unions. This bill targets a small minority of people for a set of special protections. ... It creates a classification that does not have clearly defined characteristics. This makes it difficult to predict the consequences of the bill if it is passed.

[While...] Gender Identity Disorder is a defined and treatable psychosexual dysfunction according to the American Psychiatric Association, it isn't clear that people will need to prove the presence of GID in order to qualify for the special protections.

What is also unclear is that since the bill protects gender "expression", cross-dressers and transvestites may also receive protections despite the problems such behavior could cause at a place of business or in a classroom.

While it would be unfair to discriminate against someone who is trying to decide a gender that nature had failed to define, such as in the case of hermaphrodites [an extremely rare circumstance], someone whose sex is clearly defined should not be entitled to play "sexual identity bingo" as retribution against an employer or as a tool to initiate frivolous litigation.

... Just because someone has strange or unusual sexual proclivities doesn't mean they are entitled to special protection under the law.... After all, couldn't a sadomasochist make the same argument? A polygamist?" ...

[Vermont Renewal newsletter, "A Closer Look" Jan/Feb 2006]