- November 30, 2017
HRC OPPOSES TRUMP-PENCE ‘TAX’ SCHEME THAT INCLUDES DANGEROUS ATTACK ON ACA: “With provisions that undermine the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and threaten programs critical to LGBTQ people, the Trump-Pence tax plan would have devastating consequences for millions of Americans,” said HRC President Chad Griffin (@ChadHGriffin). “The Senate must reject this reckless and desperate attempt to score a legislative victory at the expense of everyday Americans.” The Senate version of the bill repeals the ACA’s individual mandate that requires all American’s to have health insurance or pay a penalty. Repealing the mandate could result in 13 million people leaving the insurance market, causing insurance premiums to soar and leaving millions more priced out of access to healthcare. The deficits triggered by the bill would also result in mandatory spending cuts to critical health programs including Medicare and the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program. More from HRC.
ROY MOORE ATTEMPTS TO BLAME LGBTQ COMMUNITY FOR HIS OWN MISCONDUCT: During an appearance last night, the Alabama U.S. Senate candidate again attacked the LGBTQ community and continued to deny the allegations of sexual misconduct and pedophilia against him. Of the brave women who stepped forward to share their experiences of his predation and those who helped amplify their voices, he said: “They’re liberals. They don’t hold conservative values. They are the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender who want to change our culture...” Clearly, Moore is using LGBTQ people as political pawns instead of acknowledging his sexual misconduct. Perhaps he should spend more time focusing on the needs of all Alabamians rather than damning part of the Alabama community. #NoMoore from BuzzFeed.
“OPEN TO ALL” -- COALITION LAUNCHES NATIONAL CAMPAIGN TO PROTECT NONDISCRIM LAWS IN FACE OF DIRE THREAT POSED BY MASTERPIECE CASE: The effort, undertaken by HRC and 23 other civil rights organizations, underscores the dangers of efforts to enshrine a license to discriminate into law by anti-LGBTQ forces that have brought the Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission to the Supreme Court of the United States. On Tuesday, the high court will hear arguments in the case of a Colorado baker who refused to bake a cake for a gay couple and was sued under a Colorado non-discrimination law. If the Supreme Court allows the First Amendment to be used as a tool of discrimination, it could open a pandora's box, enabling businesses and restaurants to deny service to people on virtually any basis. Check out the campaign, including national ads and ways to take action, here.
- Morning Must Read, “The Masterpiece Cakeshop Case is Not About Religious Freedom”: Writes Jennifer Finney Boylan (@JennyBoylan): “...[T]hat’s what the Masterpiece case is about: It would give individuals the right to discriminate.” Read the full piece from The New York Times.
DISGUSTING -- TRUMP RETWEETS ISLAMOPHOBIC VIDEOS; PRESS SEC SAYS IT DOESN’T MATTER IF THEY’RE FAKE: Yesterday, Donald Trump retweeted a series of unverified anti-Muslim videos from the deputy leader of a White nationalist organization in England. Under questioning from reporters, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders defended the decision to post the videos without determining if they were true. British Prime Minister Theresa May had a different take, pronouncing Trump “wrong” to disseminate the hate group’s material, and asserting that “British people overwhelmingly reject the prejudiced rhetoric of the far right.” More from The Washington Post.
- Muslim Advocates, a national legal advocacy and educational organization, has released a guide on combating anti-Muslim hatred online, including what the law says, what internet companies and individual users can do about hateful content. Read the report here.
THANKFUL THURSDAY -- PORTLAND, MAINE, SCHOOL BOARD PROTECTS TRANSGENDER STUDENTS: Members unanimously approved a policy to protect transgender students -- requiring staff training, allowing students to use gender-segregated facilities most aligned with their gender identity and respecting a student’s name and pronouns. More from The Portland Press Herald.
KENTUCKY SUPREME COURT TO HEAR CASE INVOLVING T-SHIRT COMPANY THAT DISCRIMINATED AGAINST LGBTQ PEOPLE: The Lexington-Fayette Urban County Rights Commission argues that the company, Hands-On Originals, discriminated against the LGBTQ community and violated the city’s fairness ordinance prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. In May, the Kentucky Court of Appeals ruled in favor of a lower court’s decision disputing those findings. More from The Courier Journal.
COULD SCOTUS REVIEW NATION’S WORST ANTI-LGBTQ STATE LAW? Lawyers for Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund and the Mississippi Center for Justice have submitted written arguments to the Supreme Court of the United States asking justices to consider hearing their case against a harmful Mississippi state law that allows religion to be used as a justification to discriminate against LGBTQ people at work, school and in their communities. More from The Associated Press.
HRC MOURNS BROOKLYN BREYANNA STEVENSON, BLACK TRANS WOMAN KILLED IN OKLAHOMA: Stevenson, 31, was found murdered in a motel room in Oklahoma City on Monday. Oklahoma’s News 4 reported that police are still investigating the crime and have made no arrests. Stevenson is the 27th known transgender person killed in the U.S. this year. “We are heartbroken. Brooklyn BreYanna was an amazing daughter, sister and friend with a giving and loving heart,” her family said in a statement. “We pray that those who committed this heinous crime will be identified and Brooklyn will receive justice.” A report by the HRC Foundation and the Trans People of Color Coalition about the often deadly violence faced by transgender people can be found at HRC. More from HRC.
GET THE FACTS ON HIV -- NEW VIDEO FROM THE CDC:
NEARLY 300 RALLY IN SUPPORT OF LGBTQ-INCLUSIVE ILLINOIS CHURCH: The First Congregational Church of Geneva was targeted by anti-equality activists because of its support of its LGBTQ members. More from Kane County Chronicle.
LGBTQ ADVOCATES EXPRESS CONCERN AFTER RUSSIA ANNOUNCED AS WORLD CUP HOST: In 2013, a law banning “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations” was passed by Russia’s Federal Assembly and signed into law by President Vladimir Putin. The law imposes fines or jail time to citizens or foreigners, such as those visiting Russia for the World Cup. More from The New York Times.
- Amid anti-LGBTQ human rights abuses, LGBTQ shelter opens in Russia: Originally opened to help gay and bisexual men fleeing state violence in Chechnya, it now serves all of Russia’s LGBTQ community. More from Agence France Presse.
GAY MAN’S DEATH IN AUSTRALIA DEEMED HATE CRIME 30 YEARS LATER: Originally determined to be a suicide, new findings show that Scott Johnson , 27, was pushed off a cliff in Sydney in 1988 because he was a gay man. The investigation was reopened following petitions from family members, who noted widespread hostility toward the LGBTQ community by police during that time. No arrests have been made in light of these new findings. More from The New York Times.
MOZAMBIQUE LGBTQ ORGANIZATION ONE STEP CLOSER TO LEGAL RECOGNITION: The Constitutional Council of Mozambique ruled that HRC partner Lambda, Mozambique’s largest LGBTQ organization , did not violate the republic’s constitution. More from Global Voices.
Newsweek speaks to Danica Roem about Roy Moore’s anti-LGBTQ career; Reuters exposes anti-LGBTQ violence causing many Central Americans to flee their homes; Yahoo Sports shares former NBA player Jason Collins’ coming out experience;