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Mike Pence’s New Chief of Staff Once Attacked Gay People as ‘Sodomites’ and Blasted Their ‘Perverted Lifestyles’

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“Guys like him wanted us to die. And they had an effect,” an AIDS activist says.

Vice President Mike Pence‘s incoming Chief of Staff is under fire even before starting his new job, after revelations that during college he attacked gay people and people living with HIV and AIDS.

In a 1992 opinion piece at the W&L Spectator, a college publication of Washington & Lee University, Marc Short wrote about “AIDS and the Heterosexual,” as The Daily Beast reports.

Short in the article refers to gay people as “sodomites,,” attacks “the perverted lifestyles homosexuals pursue,” and warns students should not “glorify homosexuals’ repugnant practices of frequent anal intercourse nor should we consider them brave for coming out of the closet.”

If the name Marc Short is familiar, it should be. He is a former Trump administration senior official who served as the White House Director of Legislative Affairs until mid-July of last year. He begins as Vice President Pence’s Chief of Staff next week.

Referring to efforts to educate the public that HIV and AIDS do not only affect gay people, Short attacked them as a “propaganda campaign,” a “distortion campaign,” and “intentional deception.”

“The campaign’s purpose is both to lobby Congress for more federal funding of AIDS research and to destigmatize the perverted lifestyles homosexuals pursue,” Short wrote.

Short’s uneducated opinion also led him to refer to an “HIV-infected alumnus” who said, “AIDS is not caused by drug use or homosexual sex, it is simply a virus…passed by these and other activities.”

Claiming “we feel sympathy” for the alumnus “and all AIDS victims,” Short opined, “that does not mean that we glorify homosexuals’ repugnant practices of frequent anal intercourse nor should we consider them brave for coming out of the closet.”

Short also quotes the author of “The Myth of Heterosexual AIDS” to suggest heterosexual people are less susceptible to HIV/AIDS, regardless of if they have intercourse with HIV-positive partners, which is false. He also called gay people “dishonest,” and claimed “homosexuals are eager to be defined as heterosexual.”

Not only did Short attack LGBT people, he placed the words HIV epidemic in scare quotes. Short also referred to people living with HIV as “a homosexual AIDS carrier,” and accused them of taxpayer “fraud” and of taking funds away from “victims of other diseases.”

Short, according to The Daily Beast, has apologized for his words.

“I regret using language as an undergraduate college student that was not reflective of the respect I try to show others today,” Short said in a statement to The Daily Beast. “We have all learned a lot about AIDS over the past 30 years and my heart goes out to all the victims of this terrible disease.”

Short’s apology does not fully address his feelings about LGBTQ people.

And his apology is not good enough for Peter Staley, a long-term AIDS and gay rights activist.

“I wrote stuff in college too. And I don’t look back and say, ‘Oh, sorry, it was my college years.’ You’re either on the right side of stuff or the wrong side.” Staley told The Daily Beast. “He was taking classic Jesse Helms-style rhetoric from the late ’80s and putting an early ’90s spin on it and sounding like the fools they all were… Guys like him wanted us to die. And they had an effect.”

Pence’s new hire is likely to yet again place the spotlight on his own anti-LGBT positions and actions. You can read more about Pence’s attacks on LGBT people in our archives, here.

Short’s essay appears on page 11 here. It should be required reading for anyone working to oust the Trump administration.

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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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Missouri Lawmaker Wants to Make It Easy for Parents to Sue Their Local School if Kids Are ‘Subjected To’ Anything LGBTQ

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A Missouri state lawmaker is pushing a bill that would make it easy for parents to sue schools if their children are “subjected to” anything LGBTQ.

Rep. Chuck Basye wants parents to have total control over what their children see in school, even if it’s not part of the curriculum. The bill is in response to a poster a GSA – gay-straight alliance club – put up without getting approval from all the students’ parents.

Basye says the purpose of his legislation “is to give this a little bit of teeth so parents can take action if they feel that they’re not being listened to or their child is subjected to something they don’t agree with,” MissouriNet reports.

“I think the parents have a right to know what is in front of their children in public schools,” Basye told MissouriNet.. “That’s the intent of the bill, nothing more, nothing less.”

The ACLU has weighed in, and says Basye’s bill, HB 1565, goes too far.

“This is not only way too far reaching, but absolutely censorship of essentially livelihoods and existence at all,” Jay-Marie Hill, with the American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri, told MissouriNet. Hill says if the bill becomes law teachers could be responsible, and even fired, if they have a guest speaker who says something parents might disagree with.

The bill is clearly framed to focus on “instruction on human sexuality and sexually transmitted diseases.”

And while it says information presented to students must be “medically and factually accurate,” it also mandates that “abstinence from sexual activity as the preferred choice of behavior in relation to all sexual activity for unmarried pupils.”

Abstinence only education has been proven to not work.

Some responses to Rep. Basye’s bill from social media:

UPDATE: 4:56 PM –
Rep. Basye’s Democratic challenger, Adrian Plank, calls Basye’s bill “one of the most obviously discriminatory pieces of legislation that I’ve ever seen in Missouri.

What I find inappropriate is a legislator that spends his time trying to pass bills that uses the power of the government to treat those most vulnerable like they are lesser human beings, or even worse, that they don’t exist. That they shouldn’t be considered worthy of attention. People have real problems that need solved, and this is how he chooses to spend his time.

 Image via Facebook

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