After granting driver’s licenses toÂ a same-sex couple who legally married out-of-state, the State of Florida is now threatening them to change their names or lose their licenses.
Scott and Daniel Wall-Desousa have been together for over ten years and traveled to New York City to marry. Upon returning home to Florida, they attempted to change their legal documents, from Social Security cards to drivers’ licenses, to reflect their new legal names, as many other people do after marrying.Â
Daniel went to a local FloridaÂ DMV and told WFTV in October it was “no hassle.” But his husband Scott spent several months and had to travel to several different locations before getting a clerk to make the change, despite the fact that his name had legally changed. Ultimately, they both had licenses reflecting their legal namesÂ â€“ names the federal government recognizes.
Last month, Scott told the local news channel an Orlando DMV clerk “said as of July of this year there have been changes in our policy and here is your new name.”
The DMV would not confirm a change in policy, but Scott understood it to be a â€˜don’t ask, don’t tellâ€™ approach by the DMV â€” something made easier since marriage licenses aren’t stamped with the same-sex label.
“Separate but equal is a dangerous thing,” Scott Wall-Desousa said.
Little did Scott Wall-Desousa know just how right he was about to be.
Just days after their story aired on WFTV, the couple received a threatening letter from the Florida DMV: Change your last name or lose your licenses.
“It informs me and notifies me that my driving privileges will be canceled indefinitely as of Nov. 22,” Daniel Wall-Desousa told WFTV reporters.Â “It is a ‘don’t ask, don’t tell
‘ policy, and I guess we have been told,Â ‘Here is the repercussion,'” Scott Wall -Desousa added.
Meanwhile, all the couple’s legal documents â€“ state and federal, and their work-related documents and even work IDs â€“Â have already been changed to their legal names.
“Everything has been changed to my benefits, to my Florida pension. How does one undo all that,” Daniel asks.
WFTV reports theÂ Wall-Desousas “plan to file a lawsuit because they feel they are being targeted.”
Ironically, the Florida DMV letter was addressed to their legal, married name:Â Wall-Desousa.
Image via Flickr
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Trump Dodges and Gives an Accidentally Revealing Answer When Confronted on His Anti-LGBT Policies
When President Donald Trump was asked Tuesday about whether he supports his administration’s anti-LGBT policies — including a new rule that would make it easier for employers to discriminate — he gave what seemed to be an unintentionally revealing answer.
REPORTER: Mr POTUS, your administration has been taking steps to make it easier to discriminate against LGBT people in the workforce. Are you okay with that?
TRUMP: Well, the Log Cabin Republicans endorsed me… I’ve done very well w/ that community. Peter Thiel & so many others pic.twitter.com/W0OMKMzEkT
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) August 20, 2019
The issue was raised by reporter Chris Johnson from the Washington Blade:
Washington Blade: Mr. President, your administration has been taking steps to make it easier to discriminate against LGBT people in the workforce. Are you OK with those actions?
Trump: Well, you know, I just got an award and an endorsement yesterday from the exact group. You saw that? They gave me the endorsement yesterday. I was very honored. It was Log Cabin. The Log Cabin, and I was very honored to receive it.
I’ve done very well with that community and some of my biggest supporters are of that community, and I talk to them a lot about it. I think I’ve done really very well with that community, as you know, Peter Thiel and so many others, they’re — they’re with me all the way, and they like the job I’m doing, and I just got a big endorsement from the Log Cabin group.
Washington Blade: But what about those actions?
Having ignored the actual substance of the question, Trump didn’t answer the follow-up.
And contrary to what he said, the vast majority of the LGBT community does not and has not supported him. In 2016, Pew Research found:
Gay, lesbian and bisexual voters may make up a relatively small share of the American electorate – just 5% of voters in the 2012 general election identified as LGB, according to national exit polls – but they have long been a deeply Democratic constituency and today are overwhelmingly negative in their assessments of Donald Trump.
Nearly nine-in-ten LGB voters (89%) give the Republican presidential nominee a rating of cold on a “feeling thermometer” that ranges from 0 (the coldest, most negative rating) to 100 (the warmest, most positive score). About eight-in-ten (82%) rate Trump very cold, including more than half (54%) who give him a score of 0. Just 9% of LGB voters rate Trump warm.
But this doesn’t matter much to Trump, because he only cares about his supporters. So when asked about the LGBT community, he begins talking about the Log Cabin Republicans, a fringe group that does not represent anywhere close to the majority of the community. (As it happens, Jennifer Horn, a member of the group’s board, resigned in protest over the endorsement. And contrary to Trump’s claim, it did not give him an “award.”) And by mentioning Peter Thiel, a wealthy gay investor, Trump is pulling the laughable “I have a gay friend” excuse for being a bigot. He’s refusing to respond to or even consider the actual LGBT community as a whole because he just doesn’t care.
The president has long made clear that he’s only interested in representing his supporters, not the American people as a whole. That’s why he criticizes California when it experiences natural disasters but promises Alabama “A+ treatment” after tornadoes strike. That’s why Sen. Lindsey Graham could point out that Trump wouldn’t be launching racist attacks at a Somali refugee congresswoman if she were “wearing a MAGA hat.” For him, people only deserve basic dignity and respect if they already support him. Unfortunately, the likes of Thiel and the Log Cabin Republicans have to debase themselves to get this recognition.
#25thAmendmentNow Is Now the Top Trending Topic After Trump Calls Himself ‘The Chosen One’
President Tweets He’s ‘The Second Coming of God’
President Donald Trump appeared even more unhinged on Wednesday, kicking his day off by posting tweets calling him “the second coming of God,” and the “King of Israel.” Just hours later Trump trashed the Prime Minister of Denmark, calling Mette Frederiksen’s negative response to him wanting to buy Greenland from them “nasty” – a word he generally reserves for women he does not like.
Trump says that Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen’s comment that his idea of buying Greenland is ‘absurd’ was “nasty” and a “very not nice way of saying something.”
Via TicToc pic.twitter.com/gOZ7CAa21X
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) August 21, 2019
Shortly thereafter, Trump flip-flopped on his claim just 24 hours earlier that he was thinking about pushing through a payroll tax cut to help get the economy going, amid global fears of a recession. On Wednesday he told reporters he had no intention of implementing any tax cuts.
Trump also scalded veteran NBC News reporter Peter Alexander for simply asking this question: “You said Russia was kicked out of the G8 because they outsmarted Obama; in fact it was because they annexed Crimea… They’re still there, why let them back in?”
Trump shits on @PeterAlexander. “This guy is the most biased reporter — NBC. You know, I made a lot of money for NBC with ‘The Apprentice,’ & I used to like ’em, but they are the most biased. Peter is such a biased — you should be able to ask the same question in a better way.” pic.twitter.com/jneWHgOAiZ
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) August 21, 2019
And he insisted that he would have to mollify the NRA over any changes in gun policy, while backtracking from his promise to advocate for a law ensuring complete background checks – something the NRA opposes.
But it was during that press gaggle Wednesday afternoon Trump let loose, exploding social media.
He called himself – as he looked up at the sky – “the chosen one” (photo.)
To be clear, it was in reference to his trade war with China, but the religious, messianic inference was palpable.
All this amid the President’s anti-Semitic remarks earlier in the week, when he called the vast majority of American Jews “disloyal” for not voting Republican.
“I think Jewish people that vote for a Democrat—I think it shows either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty,”
About 80% of Jewish Americans vote Democrat.
Oh, then Trump declared he is looking “very seriously” at signing an executive order to end the constitutionally-mandated promise of bestowing citizenship at birth to anyone born on U.S. soil.
That’s just a sample of all the insanity Trump has created in under 24 hours.
So perhaps it’s not surprise that #25thAmendmentNow is the top trending topic on Twitter right now, and has been for hours.
The 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides the pathway for the Vice President to declare the President of the United States unfit to continue serving.
Trump Says He’s ‘Very Seriously’ Looking at Changing Constitutionally-Mandated Right to US Citizenship
President Donald Trump says he is looking “very seriously” at altering a constitutional right to citizenship at birth. The president made his remarks during a press gaggle during which he also called himself “the chosen one” as he looked up at the sky. Those remarks came just hours after he tweeted praise calling him “the second coming of God” and “the King of Israel.”
“We’re looking at birthright citizenship very seriously,” Trump told reporters. Birthright citizenship is mandated by the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Also known as Jus soli, it dates back to English common law.
Basically the law says that any person on U.S. soil at the time of their birth is a U.S. citizen, regardless of their parent’s nationalities.
“We’re looking at that very seriously, birthright citizenship, where you have a baby on our land. You walk over the border, have a baby — congratulations, the baby is now a U.S. citizen,” Trump said, calling it “absurd.”
He told reporters if he were to end it he would do so via executive order.
It’s likely that would be unconstitutional and would absolutely be fought in court.
“All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside,” the Constitution reads.
Watch the president discuss birthright citizenship:
President Trump: “We are looking at birthright citizenship very seriously. … It’s frankly ridiculous” pic.twitter.com/T09WT8BaBx
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) August 21, 2019
In addition to likely being unconstitutional, Trump’s attempt to end birthright citizenship would be opposed by many.
Here’s a University of Texas Law professor:
Look all you want, Mr. President, but there are only two ways to end birthright citizenship in this country:
Have 2/3 of both the House and the Senate pass a constitutional amendment that 38 states ratify; or
— Steve Vladeck (@steve_vladeck) August 21, 2019
Here’s a conservative, National Review writer David French:
Attempting to end birthright citizenship through an executive order (should Trump carry through with his threat) would be the most egregious attempted abuse of executive authority — outside of unilateral presidential military actions — in my lifetime.
— David French (@DavidAFrench) August 21, 2019
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