Thursday, September 25, 2014

Real Life "Segregation Law"

We figured now is as good of a time as ever to explain this to him. Sure, we had some choice words for outgoing Assembly Member and current NV-04 candidate Cresent Hardy (R) after he let slip his (lack of) qualification to serve in Congress. But ultimately, we at Nevada Progressive are here to help. And yes, this means we're even willing to help Cresent Hardy.

But before we can help Cresent Hardy, he really needs to help himself. And that means he needs to be willing to reevaluate his idea of "segregation laws".

While Hardy has been engaged in a philosophical debate (with himself?) on the nature of anti-discrimination laws, real Americans have been enduring real life wrongful discrimination. Matthew Hileman was fired from AT&T after he spoke out on the nasty notes being left on his chair. Hobby Lobby still refuses to allow Meggan Somerville the same treatment afforded to other female employees. And Colin Collette was fired from his church for getting engaged.

And that's not all. Sometimes, wrongful discrimination can turn violent. Earlier this week, Philadelphia police arrested Kathryn Knott (ironically, the daughter of a Bucks County police chief), Philip Williams, and Kevin Harrigan in relation to the brutal beating of a Philadelphia gay couple. While Knott, Williams, and Harrigan face several serious charges, including aggravated assault, this case has revealed the lack of protection Pennsylvania state law provides its LGBTQ residents. This has infuriated Pennsylvania State Rep. Brian Sims (D), especially since this attack occurred in his district.

This isn't just Pennsylvania. This is Texas. This is Utah. This is New York. And this is a shocking number of states across the nation. This is real life "segregation law".

Fortunately, Nevada has improved in recent years in moving closer to equal protection under the law. However, that's no thanks to Cresent Hardy, as he's voted against nearly every single piece of pro-LGBTQ civil rights legislation. He even voted against SB 139 last year, the hate crimes law that Brian Sims is now fighting for in Pennsylvania.

Back in February, Cresent Hardy claimed he couldn't support any advances in LGBTQ civil rights "because of my religious beliefs, the way I was raised [...] For me to vote for it would be to deny the same God that I believe in." Has he ever met Former President Jimmy Carter? He still teaches Sunday School at his local Baptist church. And when asked about this matter at a Michigan college earlier this month, Carter had this to say.

And Cresent Hardy should pay attention to this. This is real life "segregation law". When loving couples are prohibited from marrying because of their respective genders, that's "segregation law". When someone is fired from the job because of who one is, that's "segregation law". When someone is beaten to near death because of how someone looks, that's "segregation law". And when someone can't even count on being treated like a human being because of someone else's definition of gender, that's "segregation law".

There. Now, no one can say we never did Cresent Hardy a favor.

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