Mychal Massie is the former chairman of the National Leadership Network of Black Conservatives-Project 21 – a conservative black think tank located in Washington, D.C. He was recognized as the 2008 Conservative Man of the Year by the Conservative Party of Suffolk County, N.Y. He is a nationally recognized political activist, pundit and columnist. He has appeared on Fox News Channel, CNN, MSNBC, C-SPAN, NBC, Comcast Cable and talk-radio programmingMore ↓Less ↑
While the nation’s news outlets are riveted on the Jena 6 and O.J. Simpson, an insidious undermining of the workplace advances virtually unnoticed.
That creeping darkness is the federal Employment Nondiscrimination Act, or ENDA, H.R. 2015. If the proposed measure becomes law, it will add “actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity” as a category to the 1964 Civil Rights Act. It would give special employment rights to homosexuals and the transgendered that would not only harm the integrity of faith-based organizations, but it would specifically undermine an employer’s ability to grow his/her business in a productive and profitable way.
Civil rights and homosexual rights are not synonymous. Civil rights focus on the right to vote, the guaranteed access to public accommodations, and the desegregation of public facilities and schools. They have never been, nor should they ever be, about attempting to have the federal government mandate acceptance of a particular lifestyle.
Homosexuals and cross-dressers may in fact be a lot of things, but an oppressed minority they are not. And I, for one, resent their temerity in suggesting that a rejection of their chosen lifestyle is in any way equivalent to what truly oppressed peoples in this country went through for the right to vote, sit at a lunch counter and/or stay in the hotel of their choice.
Homosexuals are not immutable – there is a difference between refusing to change one’s behavior and being unable to change the color of one’s skin. They are no more economically deprived than others, and they certainly do not have a history of political and historical powerlessness. Ergo, sexual orientation is not a civil right. Homosexual activists represent one of the most powerful lobbies per capita in the country. But I digress.
ENDA would apply to businesses with 15 or more employees and would make it illegal for employers “to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise discriminate against any individual with respect to the compensation, terms, conditions or privileges of employment of the individual, because of such individuals’ actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity.”
In layman’s terms, said lawyer-speak means, if ENDA becomes law (and I am in no way attempting to inject humor here), the branch manager of your local bank could, without fear of penalty, come to work looking like “Boy George in Liza Minnelli 1980s drag makeup, complete in his working girl commuter-friendly disco sneakers.” And there wouldn’t be a thing the bank could do or say about it – no matter how offended its customers might be or how uncomfortable it would make the other employees.
Passage of ENDA means that the surgeon scheduled to perform your operation could decide to do same in his blond wig with full mascara and his Playtex plus-size bra, and there wouldn’t be a thing the hospital could say or do.
It means that your child’s second-grade teacher could decide she was going to dress like a man, complete with makeup to simulate facial hair, and the school would have no recourse. And it goes without saying that the owner of a local Bible bookstore would be powerless to prevent a homosexual employee from holding hands with his or her homosexual lover within the workplace. Any attempt to prevent said behavior would result in immediate litigation.
Some may say, “That wouldn’t happen – Massie’s citing ridiculous and imaginary examples simply to scare the public.” My response to that reasoning is that if the examples I have delineated are not intended and expected outcomes of those supporting ENDA, then why is there a need for such legislation? Businesses are already prohibited from hiring, firing or making employment decisions based on race, sex, color, national origin, age, religion or disability.
Business owners and companies are in business to be successful, and, accordingly, there are acceptable protocols pursuant to same within the martinet of said business culture. To legislate the undermining of this culture is unprincipled, but obviously not out of character for many of today’s legislators.
Homosexuals enjoy the same basic rights and privileges of heterosexuals within the context of the mores and traditions of civilized society, but that doesn’t mean everyone must love, cherish or ingratiate themselves to every other group within that society. It is perfectly legitimate to disapprove of someone for whatever reason.
To disapprove of an individual’s aberrant sexual proclivities is not synonymous with rejecting the individual. In all of the countless discussions and debates in which I have participated, I have never heard it once said that homosexuals are xenobiotic or xenogenetic – the discussions center on the act itself and an unwillingness to be forced into an acceptance of said act as natural.
ENDA is the latest attempt to have the federal government enforce what businesses and individuals overwhelmingly reject, i.e., mandated acceptance of a particular lifestyle to the exclusion of their core beliefs and principles. Homosexual activists are demanding the government mandate that rational Americans reject the reality they know to be true and believe that men can be women and vice versa.
If ENDA passes, organizations like the Boy Scouts, youth camps, religious bookstores and faith-based services would immediately fall victim to liberal courts eager to do the bidding of those who seek to alter the accepted sexual construct representative of civilized society.
Organizations and companies that have served the public for decades would be forced into adopting that which they are opposed to, or lose their ability to continue serving the public. Where is the civil right in that?