houston, we have a problem …

Houston voters have just struck down a non-discrimination ballot measure  …
Prop. 1, known as Houston’s Equal Rights Ordinance, would have barred discrimination on the basis of race, age, military status, disability and 11 other categories in a variety of areas. (Religious organizations and institutions would be exempt from the requirements.) …
Now before the emails, threats, name calling, questions about my parentage and usual bullshit that some of my posts seem to generate starts, let me be very clear …  I AM NOT labeling every citizen of Houston a regressive bigot, or an issues ignorant and uninformed citizen, they are most certainly not … by no means … (so save the angry emails explaining to me that YOU don’t feel a certain way, or that YOU never voted for this) … But, I will say that anyone who did vote for this step backwards in time deserves all the condemnation I and anyone else can muster … and if you ever wondered why large sectors of the rest of the world looks towards certain parts of the United States as places filled with, and run by bullies, or as a joke, or as a backwards thinking fear driven society, well, here’s the perfect example … (again, before the emails and shit starts, take a quick run around the internet, flip through some foreign TV channels, read a few newspapers from other countries, or do a little travelling and you’ll see that what was once thought of as “the greatest country on earth” is no longer seen in anywhere near that light) …
Conservative activists did what they do best and ramped up the fear factor, rather than deal with the reality of the situation, and dubbed Prop. 1 the “bathroom ordinance” and adopted the slogan “No men in women’s bathrooms” playing up fears that passage could lead to male sexual predators dressing up as women and entering women’s restrooms …
Hey, even the guv got in on the action … he even rolled out the tried and true ‘make it all about Hillary’ b.s. …
(that always works in certain situations doesn’t it Greg? … when you want your way, roll out the fear ‘n’ loathing) …
 prop1

This factually dishonest message proved to be incredibly effective: Many Houston voters seemed to think the measure was solely about access to restrooms and were unaware of the broader nondiscrimination protections in the measure.
The most recent TV spot released by the anti-Prop. 1 coalition Campaign for Houston, for example, showed a man entering a bathroom stall with a young girl. “Any man at any time could enter a woman’s bathroom simply by claiming to be a woman that day,” the narrator warned.

<span class='image-component__caption' itemprop="caption">"No men in women's bathrooms" became the slogan for HERO opponents.</span>
Pat Sullivan/Associated Press “No men in women’s bathrooms” became the slogan for HERO opponents.

Lance Berkman, who once played for the Houston Astros, cut an ad with the same message, saying he was concerned about the safety of his female family members if HERO passed. “My wife and I have four daughters,” he said in the spot. “Proposition 1 would allow troubled men who claim to be women to enter women’s bathrooms, showers, and locker rooms. It’s better to prevent this danger by closing women’s restrooms to men, rather than waiting for a crime to happen.”
FACT: Prop. 1 never specifically mentioned bathrooms.
There is no federal law protecting LGBT individuals from discrimination, although a group of lawmakers introduced a bill in July that would provide comprehensive protections … and how much do you want to bet that as long as the GOP is in control of the house, the bill will never see the light of day for a vote … some shit just makes me seethe … like this …
also, these laws exist throughout the country, in many different areas and states … and you know how many assaults have been reported connected to these laws?  … zero … nada, zilch, none! … meaning the whole “this will lead to …” argument is factually inaccurate … but hey, let’s not let facts get in the way of a good ole fashioned fear mongering eh? …
I personally know from time spent there that Houston is one of the most diverse cities in the US …
so, what the fuck happened Houston? … this isn’t who you really are, is it? … it sure isn’t the Houston I remember … just sayin’ …
(and to you peeps who voted for this – you do realize that you are the same peeps who have now made it legal to discriminate against people, right? … try and justify that … go on, give it your best go … (or was that the intent all along, and this is just a nice, easy, silent way to get there?) p.s. yeah, I know that Houston elected and re-elected a lesbian mayor, so let’s get that out of the way before I get that email …
which makes this whole thing even more frustrating, seethe worthy and confusing …
p.p.s. in case any Canadians feel left out of all this, or get all frickin’ holier than thou and go “I can’t believe these Americans”, let’s not forget that the Harper government just tried basically the same thing during the recent federal election with the whole “be very scared of the woman behind the veil” tactic … and it nearly worked … just scroll back through yer’ Facebook page Canucks and check how many of yer’ fellow Canadians jumped on that bandwagon o’ fear … the whole “here come the terrorists, OMG! what will these godless Libruls do next?” shit is still showing up on my Facebook newsfeed … fortunately for Canada, the citizenry said get lost and sent that prick packing … but hey, this shit works … that’s why certain factions of the right keep rolling it out … it’s the old ‘Only I can protect you from these heathens and miscreants’ tactic … here’s hoping for some change …

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