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Federal Court In Landmark Case Rules Sexual Orientation Discrimination Is Sex Discrimination

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A federal court has issued a historic ruling, allowing victims of sexual orientation discrimination to sue under federal civil rights law.

A federal judge has ruled that “claims of sexual orientation discrimination are gender stereotype or sex discrimination claims” in matters concerning education.

The case involves two women plaintiffs, Haley Videckis and Layana White who are suing Pepperdine University, a private Christian college in California. They contend they were subjected to ongoing and repeated harassment and forced from the school’s basketball team, lost their scholarships, and ultimately withdrew from the school altogether.

The case reads like something out of the 1950’s.

The women allege their coach and other members of the school’s athletics department privately interviewed their fellow players, asking if any player were lesbian or bisexual, and asked players if the two women were dating. They were prohibited from playing in manners not applied to other students. And they suffered retaliation when they complained.

They charge they were “harassed and discriminated against in an effort to force [them] to quit the team.”

The women also claim one member of the school’s athletics coaching staff asked their fellow players “how close Plaintiffs were, whether they took vacations together, where they slept, whether they pushed their beds together, whether they went on dates, and whether they would live together.”

And there’s this stunning charge.

“On April 16, 2014, Coach Ryan held a team leadership meeting where he spoke on the topic of lesbianism. In the meeting, Coach Ryan stated that lesbianism was a big concern for him and for women’s basketball, that it was a reason why teams lose, and that it would not be tolerated on the team.”

There are other charges of harassment, including claims the coaching staff lied, changed their time sheets, and a claim that “Coach Ryan reached out to two of Plaintiffs’ teammates, recommended that the teammates not live with Plaintiffs, and stated that Plaintiffs were bad influences.”

This ruling is not the final ruling in the case, it merely allows the case to move forward, stating that under Title IX of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, which was amended in 1972, the plaintiffs are entitled to sue.

Title IX reads:

No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.

In his ruling last week, U.S. District Court Judge Dean Pregerson writes, 

“This Court, in its prior order … stated that ‘the line between discrimination based on gender stereotyping and discrimination based on sexual orientation is blurry, at best.’ After further briefing and argument, the Court concludes that the distinction is illusory and artificial, and that sexual orientation discrimination is not a category distinct from sex or gender discrimination. Thus, claims of discrimination based on sexual orientation are covered by Title VII and IX, but not as a category of independent claims separate from sex and gender stereotype. Rather, claims of sexual orientation discrimination are gender stereotype or sex discrimination claims.”

Judge Pregerson also writes that “the Court finds that sexual orientation discrimination is a form of sex or gender discrimination, and that the ‘actual’ orientation of the victim is irrelevant. It is impossible to categorically separate ‘sexual orientation discrimination’ from discrimination on the basis of sex or from gender stereotypes; to do so would result in a false choice. Simply put, to allege discrimination on the basis of sexuality is to state a Title IX claim on the basis of sex or gender.”

 

Image by CampusGrotto via Flickr and a CC license
Hat tip: Chris Geidner at Buzzfeed

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WTH?

In First Interview Since Loss, Trump Goes Off the Rails and Suggests FBI Is ‘Involved’ in Stealing Election

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In his first interview since losing to President-elect Joe Biden, President Donald Trump repeated false claims about voter fraud and suggested that the FBI was “involved” in stealing the election.

Trump made the claims while speaking to Fox News host Maria Bartiromo.

“They send millions and millions and millions of mail-in ballots,” Trump opined. “I’m sure you know people that got two, three, four — because I do. They got four ballots. They got one at a country home. Dead people were seeing ballots. But even worse, dead people were applying to get a ballot. They were making applications to get ballots. Many. And we’re not talking about 10 people, we’re talking — there are a lot of dead people that so-called voted this election.”

“This is total fraud,” he continued. “And how the FBI and Department of Justice — I don’t know, maybe they’re involved. But how people are allowed to get away with this stuff is unbelievable. This election was rigged. This election was a total fraud.”

Trump also suggested that the judicial system had been rigged against him.

“We go to judges and people don’t want to get involved,” Trump remarked to Bartiromo. “The media doesn’t even want to cover it. I mean, you’re doing something. You’re actually very brave.”

Watch the video below from Fox News.

 

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'BLOOD ON HIS HANDS'

Trump’s ICE Is Using Torture to Quickly Deport Africans Back to a Deadly War-Torn Country

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Trump ICE deportations Africa

The central African country of Cameroon is currently experiencing a four-year separatist conflict that has killed over 3,000 people and displaced half a million more with “extrajudicial killings, forced disappearances, arbitrary and unlawful detention and torture.”

But Cameroonians who fled to the U.S. to seek political asylum here as refugees are experiencing torture as well from private prison guards and agents with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in Louisiana and Mississippi.

A new report from the Southern Poverty Law Center and Freedom for Immigrants includes six Cameroonians who say they were physically forced to sign deportation documents that they didn’t understand and threatened with choking, pepper spray, physical pain and prolonged detention if they refused.

One accuser said that ICE agents and private guards stripped him naked from the waist down, exposing his genitals and buttocks to a room of 10 people, while forcing him to sign. Others said they and other refugees were fed substandard food, subject to a humiliating full-body strip search, and housed alongside federal prisoners while waiting for their court proceedings.

If true, the actions would violate Louisiana state and federal law, the international Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment, which the U.S. has ratified, as well as ICE’s own policies within its 2011 Performance Based National Standards, Newsweek reports.

Trump has deported anywhere from  94 or 116 Cameroonians back to their home country since October. The Cameroon government has detained refugees who return to their shore to interrogate them for any separatist ties.

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'CAN'T WE END THIS ALREADY?'

Trump Is Already Planning a 2024 Run Just So Biden Won’t Get All the Press Attention

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President Donald Trump is reportedly discussing launching his 2024 re-election campaign kickoff event on January 20 just to overshadow President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration. Yes, really.

The Daily Beast has cited three officials who Trump has reportedly discussed the idea with. He is assessing which big-dollar donors would support his bid and which political underlings would remain loyal to him just to benefit from whatever happens.

“Trump’s scheming about a future White House run is both an implicit recognition that he views his own current legal efforts as longshots and a reflection of his inherent desire to maintain political power and public attention,” The Daily Beast writes.

According to Bloomberg News, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien, reportedly told Trump, “If you do that—and I think I speak for everybody in the room—we’re with you 100 percent.”

Trump still has yet to officially concede. On Thursday he told reporters, “It’s going to be a very hard thing to concede because we know there was massive fraud.” Trump has been unable to prove his repeated claims of “massive fraud” in over 30 lawsuits which have either failed, been dismissed or withdrawn by his own re-election campaign.

Unfortunately for Trump, two comedians have already snatched up DonaldJTrump2024.com and are using the site to repeatedly call Trump a loser. They offered to give Trump the URL if he’ll concede and call himself a sad loser via Twitter.

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