The Senate Judiciary Committee Equality Act hearing Wednesday is one that everyone should be paying attention to because it’s not just about LGBTQ rights, it’s about how we as a society will handle the issues of sex, gender and faith for generations to come.
It was a point driven forward by ranking Senate Judiciary member Chuck Grassley in his opening statement Wednesday on Capitol Hill. He argued that the bill appears to remove the rights from many people, specifically women, by reshaping how we view genders in the United States. He’s right, every human being should be treated with equality and dignity. I absolutely advocate for LGBTQ community but not at the expense of erasing and removing the rights of millions of young women, who are now having to compete against men in sports because some men are identifying as women.
The Equality Act, which passed the House in February, would actually violate those tenets by trampling on religious freedoms as well as the right of those who do not fit in the LGBTQ category, like some young women who are being forced to compete against men.
President Biden said during his campaign that the Equality Act would be one of his top priorities at the beginning of his tenure. The legislation didn’t have a problem getting through the House and was largely voted along party lines. Only three Republicans broke with the GOP and voted with Democrats to pass the bill but it’s not going to be as easy in the Senate.
During his opening statement, Grassley shared a story regarding a young all-star high school student athlete Chelsea Mitchell, whose story was part of the testimony at the hearing.
He said that Mitchell, like many female athletes he spoke with, would “like to retain the right to compete on equal footing against other biological girls. Instead, this accomplished athlete has been forced to compete against biological men.”
“Many women and girls before her fought for the legal protections under Title IX, which recognizes that sex-specific distinctions are appropriate in some instances,” he said. “As a father, a grandfather, and a husband, I have celebrated the athletic successes of talented young women in my own family. So I also am deeply concerned about this Act’s potential negative implications for all girls and women in sports.”
Grassley argues that this bill under the pretense of ‘Equality’ is manipulative. I agree.
“Laws to end hateful discrimination can be tailored to prevent injustices in various contexts, like banking or housing, and thereby end those injustices,” said Grassley. “But this bill is drafted in an entirely different way. It would fundamentally manipulate how our society deals with sex, gender, and faith.”
Here is what Grassley is saying in simple terms.
The Equality Act would amend existing federal civil rights laws. As explained in the Fox News Opinion piece by Doreen Denny in February, it would also actually eliminate the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as well as the “sexual orientation and gender identity as protected characteristics, seeks to erase the understood binary definition of sex as male or female, and enshrines a new definition of sex that includes a person’s perception of his or herself – not the actual chromosomal DNA that identifies his or her true sex.”
These fundamental issues can’t simply be erased by this law because in the end it will do exactly the opposite of what it intends. Look at what’s happening now with men competing in women’s sports and the inequality in allowing it to take place. This week’s hearing will bring that all to the forefront.
This act will not stop discrimination against the LGBTQ community but increase divisions in an already divided nation.
Denny, in my opinion, said it best:
“Ponder this. Under the Equality Act, everything women have done and achieved over the last half century to improve opportunities and protections in education, sports, the workplace and society could be overruled by any male claiming ‘womanhood.’”Doreen Denny, Senior Director of Government Relations for Concerned Women for America, the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization.
An employer who wants to cut health care and parental leave costs could choose a transgender person over a woman of child-bearing age and still get credit for the “woman hire.” A college coach could choose to give a scholarship to a transgender athlete over a female athlete knowing the biology of the former gives the team a competitive advantage.
How can we enact a law that fails to recognize women and young girls, which I frankly can say has been one of the most discriminated of all groups since the beginning of humankind.
And what about religious institutions, parental rights and religious rights? What will happen to private hospitals or religious hospitals and their ability to practice medicine based on their faith.
Grassley noted in his opening remark at the hearing that lawmakers much hear “other perspectives will help the Senate better understand what would happen to certain basic services on which many Americans rely, if this Act is adopted.”
“For example, what will happen to Catholic or Methodist-affiliated hospitals, which provide excellent services to the public, if this bill is enacted? In some areas these facilities may be the only hospitals for miles around,” Grassley said.
He added, if “a faith-based organization has partnered with a community to provide social services that would otherwise not exist, like a soup kitchen or an adoption agency for hard-to-adopt special needs children, what happens to the people who relied most heavily on those services? To whom do they turn?”
It’s unfortunate but common sense is serious lacking in our nation. It’s understandable that we are all looking for equality and fairness. Women have fought brutal political and judicial battles throughout American history for equal rights, why are we now going to remove that in 2021, disguised as fairness.
You can follow Sara A. Carter @SaraCarterDC
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Boston Celtics Player Legally Changing Name to ‘Enes Kanter Freedom’ to Celebrate U.S. Citizenship
Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter is celebrating becoming a U.S. citizen in an incredible way. The 29-year-old athlete from Turkey is having his citizenship oath ceremony Monday, and will legally change his name to Enes Kanter Freedom.
Kanter is an outspoken human rights advocate who had his Turkish passport revoked in 2017 after he criticized Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Mediaite reports “he has also criticized NBA stars Michael Jordan and LeBron James for not doing enough to help the Black community and not speaking out against exploitative labor practices in China respectively.”
Celtics head coach Ime Udoka told the Boston Globe the team is “all for” the player’s name change. Kanter’s manager says the player will complete his legal name change to have Kanter become his middle name and Freedom be his new last name at Monday’s ceremony.
“We congratulated him as a group for getting his American citizenship last week,” Udoka said. “That’s who Enes is, we’re proud of him. Enes is who he is. He’s passionate about his stances and the name change; you look at [Ron] Artest [who changed his name to Metta Sandiford-Artest in the middle of the COVID-19 outbreak] and guys that have done it in the past. It’s something he wants to express and we’re all for it.”
Kanter has already changed his official Twitter account to Enes Kanter FREEDOM with his new last name in all caps. Freedom made waves when he tweeted the following on November 18: Money over Morals for the ‘King’. Sad & disgusting how these athletes pretend they care about social justice. They really do ‘shut up & dribble’ when Big Boss [inserted Chinese flag] says so. Did you educate yourself about the slave labor that made your shoes or is that not part of your research?”
The tweet included photos of basketball shoes he wore painted with human rights depictions and phrases such as “hey still researching and getting educated?” as well as “I am informed and educated on the situation.”
The statement is with regard to his criticism of LeBron James’ partnership with Nike. “Nike remains one of the NBA’s biggest sponsors as both organizations feed off their partnerships with China” reports Mediaite. Kanter Freedom also made an offer to take Michael Jordan and Nike co-founder Phil Knight to China in order for the men to “visit these slave labor camps and you can see it with your own eyes.”
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