The Trump Administration wants to make it legal for employers to discriminate against gay workers. Here’s what you need to know about this shady law.
This Shady Law is Failing Queer Workers
So here’s the latest in the Donald Trump mess. The Trump administration wants to legalise discrimination against gay people in the workplace. Time reports they’ve gone to the Supreme Court with this. How’s this even possible, you might wonder. Employees have rights, right?
There are laws against discrimination. Why don’t they apply to gay employees? Well, the current US law (called Title VII) bans discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, religion or national origin. It DOES NOT cover sexuality or sexual orientation.
The Difference Between Sex and Sexual Orientation
So this is important to understand. There is a difference between sex and sexual orientation. Let’s break it down:
Your sex traditionally refers to being male or female anatomically. However, this concept is different from gender identity which is your own concept of self as male/female/both/neither. So yes, this law also affects trans workers. Now, sexual orientation is a TOTALLY different thing. Sexual orientation is simply about who you’re attracted to.
If didn’t know, now you know.
So how does this law fit in? The law only protects different sexes. Not people of different sexual orientations. For example, it does not protect employees in homosexual relationships. It does not ban employers from treating them differently to workers in heterosexual relationships.
The Justice Department argues:
‘Unfavorable treatment of a gay or lesbian employee as such is not the consequence of that individual’s sex, but instead of an employer’s policy concerning a different trait—sexual orientation—that Title VII does not protect.’
This is Pretty Consistent with Trump
When asked about this law, he said: ‘I’ve done very well with that community. Some of my biggest supporters are of that community.’
He basically avoided the question.
This Will Make LGBTQ People Second-Class Citizens
There are three main cases being argued at the Supreme Court right now. The cases all involve queer employees who were fired. Why? Allegedly because of their sexual orientation or identity.
The director of the American Civil Liberties Union said this in response to the cases: ‘Most of America would be shocked if the Supreme Court said it was legal to fire Aimee because she’s transgender or Don because he is gay.’
He continues: ‘Such a ruling would be disastrous, relegating LGBTQ people around the country to a second-class citizen status.’
The Supreme Court will hear the arguments on 8 October. Let’s hope for a ruling that isn’t homophobic af.
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