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US Congressman Compared Gay People to Rapists and Warned Same-Sex Parents May ‘Harm’ Children

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Congressman Who Lamented He Could No Longer Call Women ‘Sluts’ Also Attacked LGBTQ People

U.S. Rep. Jason Lewis is a Republican representing Minnesota’s 2nd District, but just a few years ago he was a right wing radio talk show host who repeatedly attacked LGBTQ people, along with same-sex marriage and same-sex couples raising children.

“Lewis promoted extreme opinions about gays and lesbians on his radio show, comparing them to rapists, criminals, and polygamists. He contended that gay rights activists were ‘shredding the Constitution,’ and that same-sex parents ‘could harm the kid,'” as Buzzfeed’s Dominic Holden reports.

While not an attorney, Lewis in 2013 was only too happy to offer legal interpretations, albeit false ones, on the U.S. Constitution. He claimed the 14th Amendment does not require the government to treat people equally. The 14th Amendment, which is known for its Equal Protection Clause, literally states, “No State shall…deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

Not according to Lewis, who wrongly told listeners that the 14th Amendment means “that people who find themselves in similar circumstances must be treated in a similar way.”

It does not.

“When we pass a law against rape, you’re not treating a rapist equal,” Lewis told listeners in 2013, as he explained why he thought same-sex marriage should not be legal. “You must discriminate against all smokers, you must discriminate against all rapists,” he said, putting a unique spin on actual law.

“So if the law says that we’re not going to allow three people to marry, then you’ve got to treat everybody the same way,” Lewis added. “No three people can marry. Same is true for gay marriage. It’s not discrimination. It’s not unconstitutional. The law discriminates all the time. It discriminates against behavior.”

Lewis also told falsely claimed that “the gay rights lobby is playing underhanded to get their will and in the process, they are shredding the Constitution of this country.”

“They want marriage,” he continued. “They want the imprimatur of the state because they are a bit insecure in their own relationships and they want that approval. Which is rather odd because I know a number of gay people and I know a number of gay people who don’t give a whit about gay marriage and they’re the most secure ones. They tell me, ‘Ah, this whole marriage thing, who cares?’ It is the insecure activists who somehow think they have to get the approval of the straight crowd that is driving this.”

Here’s audio of Lewis from 2013 (first 40 seconds may be silent – forward if necessary):

This is far from Lewis’ only attack on LGBT people.

Last month it was revealed that as a talk radio host, Lewis lamented that Indiana’s anti-gay religious freedom law “doesn’t go far in enough in allowing discrimination,” against LGBT people. Rep. Lewis also had been upset he was no longer able to call women “sluts.”

Rep. Lewis is being challenged by Democratic nominee Angie Craig, who happens to be a lesbian, and a mother of four.

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BIGOTRY

SCOTUS Turns Down Kim Davis but Clarence Thomas Pens Scathing Attack Suggesting Same-Sex Marriage Must Be Overturned

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Former Rowan County, Kentucky clerk Kim Davis won’t get a hearing from the U.S. Supreme Court. A case against her, brought by several same-sex couples she refused to grant marriage licenses to, was rejected Monday by the country’s top court.

But ultra-conservative Justice Clarence Thomas took the opportunity to attack the court’s landmark Obergefell case, which found the Constitution allows same-sex couples the same rights and responsibilities of marriage as their different-sex peers.

Thomas, who has a direct line into the White House via his activist and lobbyist wife Ginni Thomas, slammed the decision, suggesting the case should be overturned, as Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern reports.

Why?

“Religious liberty.”

Thomas claims Kim Davis “may have been one of the first victims of this Court’s cavalier treatment of religion in its Obergefell decision, but she will not be the last.”

His words are scathing, and a direct assault on equality.

“Due to Obergefell, those with sincerely held religious beliefs concerning marriage will find it increasingly difficult to participate in society without running afoul of Obergefell and its effect on other antidiscrimination laws,” claims Thomas, five years after the decision.

“It would be one thing if recognition for same-sex marriage had been debated and adopted through the democratic process, with the people deciding not to provide statutory protections for religious liberty under state law,” he adds. “But it is quite another when the Court forces that choice upon society through its creation of atextual constitutional rights and its ungenerous interpretation of the Free Exercise Clause, leaving those with religious objections in the lurch.”

At the time of the Obergefell decision, same-sex marriage was supported by six out of 10 Americans.

In the 2015 Obergefell case, Justice Thomas writes, “the Court read a right to same-sex marriage into the Fourteenth Amendment, even though that right is found nowhere in the text.”

Thomas is a textualist, or originalist, adhering to conservatves’ pseudo-theory created in the 1980’s that claims the Constitution is not a living document, written broadly to stand the test of time. Rather, they believe it must be interpreted as the Founders conceived, with the words being interpreted exactly as the document’s authors intended.

(Textualism, or originalism, has been called “a scam” and Thomas has been blasted for “his hypocrisy” surrounding it.)

“Several Members of the Court noted that the Court’s decision would threaten the religious liberty of the many Americans who believe that marriage is a sacred institution between one man and one woman. If the States had been allowed to resolve this question through legislation, they could have included accommodations for those who hold these religious beliefs,” Thomas writes.

“The Court, however, bypassed that democratic process. Worse still, though it briefly acknowledged that those with sincerely held religious objections to same-sex marriage are often ‘decent and honorable,'” he continues, “the Court went on to suggest that those beliefs espoused a bigoted worldview.”

Believing that LGBTQ people are not equal to non-LGBTQ people is the very definition of bigotry.

Justice Thomas uses the word “bigot” four times in his dissent, which was joined by Justice Samuel Alito.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is attempting to force through the nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett, giving the Court a 6-3 conservative super-majority.

Image by Thomas Cizauskas via Flickr and a CC license

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BIGOTRY

Trump Administration to Allow Taxpayer-Funded Shelter Providers to Ban Homeless Transgender People, Because Jesus

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The Trump Dept. of Housing and Urban Development late on Wednesday moved to roll back an Obama-era regulation that bans discrimination by taxpayer-funded shelter providers against transgender people. HUD Secretary Ben Carson wants to allow anti-transgender discrimination under the guise of religious freedom.

A statement on the HUD website filled with coded language says the proposed new rule “Returns Decision Making to Local Shelter Providers,” to allow them to “establish an admissions policy that best serves their unique communities,” and “better accommodate [the] religious beliefs of shelter providers.”

In reality, the new rule would allow taxpayers to fund anti-transgender discrimination fueled by religious-based bigotry, with the federal government’s stamp of approval.

The move comes during an out of control pandemic, amid an unstable economy, and worse-than Great Depression-era unemployment.

“This important update will empower shelter providers to set policies that align with their missions, like safeguarding victims of domestic violence or human trafficking,” Secretary Carson said in the statement.

In reality, the new rule would remove protections for one of the most vulnerable populations in America, the transgender community. At some point in their lives one in five transgender people experience homelessness.

“Transgender and gender non-binary adults are more likely than cisgender adults to experience unsheltered homelessness,” CBS News notes, adding that “according to the National Alliance to End Homelessness, and transgender youth ‘make up a significant portion’ of homeless youth in the U.S.”

The move is yet another example of the Trump administration’s never-ending attacks on transgender Americans.

This month marks the third anniversary of President Trump’s infamous decision to ban transgender service members from the U.S. Military, which he did without consultation with the heads of the military services, and via tweet.

Last month Trump’s Dept. of Health and Human Services rolled back Obama-era protections for transgender patients, calling them “unnecessary.”

Last year Trump’s Dept. of Justice asked the Supreme Court to rule it is legal to fire transgender workers just because they are transgender. The Court last month decided it is illegal to do so.

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BIGOTRY

A Defeated Donald Trump Declares ‘We Live’ After Historic SCOTUS Ruling on LGBTQ Workplace Discrimination (Video)

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President Donald Trump, whose administration lobbied the Supreme Court to deny LGBTQ people civil rights, on Monday lamented the high court’s landmark ruling that finds workplace discrimination against gay and transgender Americans is illegal.

“They’ve ruled and we live with the decision,” Trump said, defeated and somewhat sad. “We live with the decision of the Supreme Court.”

This is the first time Trump has weighed in on the historic ruling. It took him more than six hours to say anything, and he only did after being asked about it by a reporter.

The President also claimed he had read the 170+ pages decision handed down just after 10 AM Monday.

“Very powerful decision, actually,” he added. “They have so ruled.”

In 2017 Trump’s DOJ told a federal appeals court the Civil Rights Act of 1964 does not protect “homosexuals” from discrimination.

Last year Trump Solicitor General Noel Francisco told the Supreme Court it is the opinion of the administration’s Dept. of Justice that a “plain text” reading of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 does not protect gay people in the workplace from discrimination, including firing for being gay or transgender.

The Supreme Court on Monday ruled it does.

Trump, who is the most anti-LGBTQ president in American history – at least modern American history, has repeatedly refused to sign the Equality Act, which the House has already passed.

Watch:

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