Saturday, March 30, 2013
Gender Identity Laws vs. Religious Freedom
It’s hard to overstate the arrogance of legislators who regularly fail to take care of basic governmental responsibilities—education, prisons, infrastructure, budgeting—yet impose laws about social mores that have no civilized precedent.
Two years ago our philosopher-kings in Sacramento passed a law, AB 887, that added “gender identity” and “gender expression” to the list of non-discrimination categories that apply to employers and housing officials.
As that piece of social engineering explained, “Gender identity refers to a person’s deeply felt internal sense of being male or female. Gender expression refers to one’s behavior, mannerisms, appearance and other characteristics that are perceived to be masculine or feminine.”
In abstract language the provision sounds benign, but when one asks how this idea plays out in real life, questions abound about the wisdom of this radical innovation.
Specifically, this bill requires employers to accept male employees who express themselves by wearing blouses and skirts to work. Conversely, biological females who feel the need to express their inner maleness can dress accordingly without fear of workplace repercussions.
The situation gets stickier when these “let a thousand sexual flowers bloom” rules are applied to students—a scenario now playing out in Massachusetts schools where “gender identity” laws allow gender-questioning students to use bathrooms of the opposite biological sex or to play on the sport teams of the sex with which they identify.
According to Bay State directives, the fact that female students feel uncomfortable about a boy in the bathroom “is not a reason to deny access to the (sincere) transgender student.” The absurdity extends to eliminating gender-based clothing at graduations—a policy that would logically require the elimination of gender-based bathrooms.
One should also ponder the application of these regulations to teachers—a hypothetical that, as one can see on the MassResistance.org website, isn’t entirely hypothetical in Massachusetts.
Not content to extend a middle finger to traditional mores in schools and the workplace, California legislators are now considering withdrawing tax-exempt status from private organizations that don’t follow their unprecedented gender-identity rules.
SB 323 requires organizations with tax-exempt status to abandon any discriminatory criteria related to “gender identity” and sexual orientation. The most obvious group targeted by this recent expression of liberal fascism is the Boy Scouts, but private schools and other groups like the American Youth Soccer Organization are also explicitly mentioned.
Brad Dacus, president of the Pacific Justice Institute, describes SB 323 as “an extreme example of intolerance” to the “convictions held by private benevolent non-profit organizations.” He also warned that, if successful, the next target of the LGBT lobby will be non-complying churches.
Thus does “tolerance” reveal itself as intolerant libertine secularism.