JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

(Cartoonist - Mike Luckovich)

In other news, the World Health Organization (WHO) is warning that coronavirus infection rates among people age 15 to 24 have tripled over the past few months. This is before most schools reopen.

Meanwhile, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is investigating Kodak's deal with the Trump regime and how the deal was disclosed. There was a run on Kodak stock the day before the deal was officially announced.

Finally, 145 congressional Democrats have signed a letter calling on the Department of Housing and Urban Development to cancel the proposed rule change that would ban transgender women from using women's homeless shelters.

Secretary Ben Caron's response is predictably ridiculous.

In the letter, the Democrats challenge the Trump administration’s argument that the new rule reflects safety concerns or undue burdens for religious organizations that operate shelters. There’s no evidence that allowing transgender women to stay in women’s shelters puts others at risk, Democrats say, or that any religious organizations made any complaints under the Obama-era Equal Access Rule.

“The rule change is a political narrative in search of a problem,” said Pennsylvania Representative Mary Gay Scanlon during the call. “We know that there’s no data to support that transgender folks pose a danger in our homeless system.” [...]

Back in June, the Supreme Court ruled in Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia that discrimination against people for their gender or sexual orientation is unconstitutional. Wexton and California Representative Maxine Waters highlighted the decision in a June 29 letter to Carson, saying that any change to the Equal Access Rule would run afoul of the court’s decision in Bostock.

Carson replied with a letter to say that there’s no conflict: Shelters are not considered housing under the Fair Housing Act, which means Bostock doesn’t apply. Instead, he writes, an individual’s sex is a relevant factor with regard to sex-segregated shelters, and shelter operators have an obligation to consider the needs of their program residents when admitting people. “Our proposed rule prohibits discrimination based on transgender status as such,” Carson writes. “Everyone deserves equal rights, but in ensuring such is received, we must consider the whole picture.”

Sasha Buchert, senior attorney at Lambda Legal, an LGBTQ civil rights group, says that HUD’s assessment doesn’t line up with the applicable case law. “There are at least two circuit courts that have held that shelters are considered dwellings under the Fair Housing Act, and therefore subject to that,” she says. “Their analysis is just wrong.”

"Everyone deserves equal rights, but..."

Trust me, most transgender women are afraid to even use a public restroom, much less a public shelter, because someone might yell at them. They wouldn't unless they have no other choice. This HUD rule only adds to stigma.

  • David Greenberg

    This may be a naive question, but how does anyone even know that an individual is LBGT?

    • Christopher Foxx

      At the risk of being castigated, for some Ts it’s fairly apparent that some transitioning is happening. But certainly for the vast majority of LBGTQwhatever folks there’s no obvious “tell”.

  • Aynwrong

    A report on NPR stated what should be the most compelling reason under the sun for any human with a brain in his or her head to walk barefoot over glass through hell to vote for Joe Biden because it will get rid of Trump. The countries that have done the best against the virus are not the wealthiest or the most democratic or the most autocratic. They’re the ones with governments that allowed the medical and various experts to lead on this. This is so obvious it hurts.

    If enough Americans haven’t figured out that Trump only wants the schools to reopen because he believes it will help him get reelected, (which means he is willing to literally kill them and/or their kids) I question if America is, at this point savable.

    Anyone who still in any way believes that a Republican (ANY REPUBLICAN) can be installed in the White House and not have it be a complete fucking disaster for LBGT rights needs to pull their fucking heads out of their fucking asses. I’m just gonna park this right here.