Quantcast
Opinion

Letter: LGBT discrimination

Comments

Return To Article
  • abcdefg Tucson, AZ
    Dec. 7, 2013 11:13 p.m.

    Utah is no. 8 in the highest registered sex offender by state list. Utah is the highest in the nation for online porn subscriptions. Google it. The Deseret News even did an article on it March 3, 2009.
    Perhaps the writer should not be so quick to slam Ms. Valentine's well founded concerns over the opportunities for abuse this law would allow. Utah does not have a good record when it comes to sexual abuse and desire for pornographic images. I also find it interesting that the author mentions The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in her letter but not the Catholic church, Greek Orthodox, Baptist, or any other denomination that practices in Utah. Where exactly was the Latter Day Saint church mentioned in Ms. Valentine's letter? This isn't a religious issue, it is one for society to determine. I am not sure about the bogeyman, but emotions should be tempered while responsible objectivity takes precedence in this debate. Unfortunately, a society with common sense is at a premium these days.

  • Contrariusesterer mid-state, TN
    Dec. 6, 2013 1:00 p.m.

    @Sven --

    "This has been the case throughout history, and it will continue to hold true."

    Actually, homosexual relationships have been accepted at many points throughout history, in many different cultures. Ancient Greece, Ancient Rome, Ancient China, Polynesia, and so on all had long traditions of homosexual acceptance.

    Homosexual relations will always be in the minority, since only about 5% of the population is LGBT. But "minority" doesn't mean "bad" or "perverted", any more than left-handedness is bad or perverted.

    And no, again, nobody wants "special" rights. Only EQUAL rights.

  • Sven Morgan, UT
    Dec. 6, 2013 12:05 p.m.

    Whether we’re speaking about the demand for gay marriage, special rights under the law, entrance into the BSA...etc., LGBTs are simply trying to convince both themselves, and the population at large, that their lifestyles are normal and healthy. Try as they might, the majority of the population will never find the LGBT lifestyle normal.

    No matter how many laws are passed and how desperately they try and ignore reality, the LGBT lifestyle will never be considered normal. This has been the case throughout history, and it will continue to hold true.

  • Contrariusester mid-state, TN
    Dec. 5, 2013 1:09 p.m.

    @Confused --

    "There are only a few states that have rights for the "Gays" community."

    Right. That's why we're having this discussion about anti-discrimination legislation in the first place. the Senate recently passed Federal anti-gay-discrimination legislation, but so far the House has refused to consider it.

    "Second, in Utah, yes they can fire for any reason."

    Again, nope.

    Title 34A Utah Labor Code

    Chapter 5 Utah AntiDiscrimination Act

    Section 106 Discriminatory or prohibited employment practices

    34A-5-106. Discriminatory or prohibited employment practices -- Permitted practices.

    (1) It is a discriminatory or prohibited employment practice to take any action described in Subsections (1)(a) through (f).

    (a) (i) An employer may not refuse to hire, promote, discharge, demote, or terminate any person, or to retaliate against, harass, or discriminate in matters of compensation or in terms, privileges, and conditions of employment against any person otherwise qualified, because of:

    (A) race;

    (B) color;

    (C) sex;

    (D) pregnancy, childbirth, or pregnancy-related conditions;

    (E) age, if the individual is 40 years of age or older;

    (F) religion;

    (G) national origin; or

    (H) disability.

  • Confused Sandy, UT
    Dec. 5, 2013 12:48 p.m.

    Contrariusier,

    I know what the EEOC states, I worked in the anti-discrimination division for 12 years....

    There are only a few states that have rights for the "Gays" community. The majority of the states do not. Gender is Female/Male period...

    Second, in Utah, yes they can fire for any reason. They do not need to mention one of the six protected classes. but they can fire a person for having tattoos because it is bad for their business.

    To prove that they fired you on one of the protected classes, is extremely difficult, unless you have documentation to back it up

  • Contrariusier mid-state, TN
    Dec. 4, 2013 6:32 p.m.

    @Confused --

    "brush up on what the definition of "discrimination" is...."

    From the EEOC: "The EEOC enforces Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964...which prohibits employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, religion, and national origin; the Equal Pay Act of 1963...which prohibits sex-based wage discrimination between employees who otherwise perform substantially equal work in the same establishment; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967...which forbids employers from discriminating against persons age 40 and over on the basis of their age; the Americans with Disabilities Act...which bars employment discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities on the basis of their disabilities; and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973...which prohibits disability discrimination in federal employment."

    Further: "...employment discrimination means taking any adverse employment action against an employee because of his or her race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age or disability. An adverse action may involve any aspect of employment, including hiring, firing, promotion, pay, and all other terms or conditions of employment. "

    Exactly what part do you believe I have misunderstood?

    "In Utah, a person can be fired for any reason."

    That's simply not true. Refer back to the EEOC statement.

  • Confused Sandy, UT
    Dec. 4, 2013 4:09 p.m.

    Contrarius

    You might want to brush up on what the definition of "discrimination" is under the EEOC and Civil Rights act Especially here in Utah.

    In Utah, a person can be fired for any reason. If the boss don't like his hair color? he can fire him without cause. Why? because we are a right to work state.

    Most employment discrimination cases don't have merit because of the level of proof the EEOC requires to prove it. Is it moral? No, but it is not under the official definition of discrimination.

    Why would we in Utah have "Gay rights"? There are plenty of laws on the books to protect them, just like it protect me. So why do these groups expect special treatment?

  • Contrariuserer mid-state, TN
    Dec. 4, 2013 9:27 a.m.

    @RedWings --

    "I am sure that no high school or college boy would ever think to say he is transgender just so he could go into the women's bathroom, or use it as an excuse when he gets caught."

    If you seriously believe that any high school boy is going to assure the ridicule of his entire class by consistently dressing and acting like a girl just so he can switch bathrooms, then you have obviously forgotten what it's like to be in high school.

  • RedWings CLEARFIELD, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 2:13 p.m.

    If this law passes, I am sure that no high school or college boy would ever think to say he is transgender just so he could go into the women's bathroom, or use it as an excuse when he gets caught.

    (please note that the above statement is dripping with sarcasm)....

  • wendell provo, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 1:01 p.m.

    @windsor
    Are you saying I should not be allowed to talk about my spouse at work?

    Recently I was called into a meeting with a Manager. It was clearly a serious issue as he had traveled from SLC. Apparently someone reported that I had an inappropriate and offensive picture in my office. I vehemently denied that this was the case, but he insisted I let him enter my office to look for himself. Of course I obliged.

    He found the picture - it was a photo of myself and my spouse in Disneyland. My arm was around his shoulder, but it was not inappropriate. Nearly every worker in the office has a similar picture of their spouse on their desk.

    The Manager suggested I take it home as it might make some people uncomfortable. I asked if he was going to require all workers to do the same thing with their photos.he said "no" and again asked me to take it home.

    I contacted HR and shortly thereafter received an apology from the manager. He said he was wrong and that the issue had been forgotten. The picture is still on my desk and will remain there.

  • windsor City, Ut
    Dec. 3, 2013 12:35 p.m.

    Yup Ranch, you got it. Don't wear a wedding ring, don't have a picture of the spouse and kids on the desk. And not one person at my work knows I'm a Mormon. Though my state on these DesNews comment boards says Utah, I have moved and am living in the Bible Belt now. Not a lot of love for Mormons here.

    So I stand by my post. There is no law that we disclose many personal things about ourselves. And religion and sexual orientation are thankfully among those that we may reveal as we wish.

    I would face discrimination revealing my religion.
    Yet I am smart enough to figure this and and therefore do not.

    LGBT's have the same choice.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 12:25 p.m.

    @windsor;

    Let me guess, you never, ever, ever talk about your spouse or family at work, right? Why should we be required to remain silent about our families when you don't?

    Mormons keep quiet about their religion at work? Ha! What planet do you live on?

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 12:22 p.m.

    Let's be real here - none of us like the idea of working with Brenda who used to be Bob. I have had that experience and it creates a hostile work environment especially when Brenda decides to use the girls bath room and the company has to comply. Lots of women running out of the bathroom screaming. It sounds doable on paper but the implementation is the problem. It was down right creepy having to work along side Brenda - especially when I had worked with Bob for years. Everyone avoided any assignment with Brenda and for good reason. There are some things you just can't force political correctness upon and expect it to work. Normal people in the work force should have protections too!!

  • windsor City, Ut
    Dec. 3, 2013 12:18 p.m.

    From article: "In fact, four in 10 LGBT Utahns report having faced discrimination from employers and landlords."

    HOW (for the millionth time) HOW can the employers and landlords even know someone is LGBT??

    Yup.

    There can't be any discrimination if people keep personal details to themselves.
    In some states, where they are not considered the same as everyone else, and are not appreciated, Mormons have learned to keep their religion quietly to themselves so as not to offend others and invite discrimination.

    The LGBT community would be wise to take a page out of that playbook.

    No one can object to, or discriminate against, something that is not broadcast.......

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Dec. 3, 2013 10:46 a.m.

    Charles S
    Freedomville, AZ
    As I have said before numerous times, ALL "anti-discrimination" laws should be repealed. If someone wants to discriminate against another person for whatever reason they choose, who are you to say they can not? Who are you to force someone to provide a service to someone they choose not to?

    ======

    Who are you?
    the Soup Nazi?

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Dec. 3, 2013 9:49 a.m.

    Machado
    South Jordan, UT

    1:29 p.m. Nov. 29, 2013

    I'm just wondering when discrimination became the "greatest of all sins" in our society.

    [Look no further than Nazi Germany - 1936-1945
    The end of Ether, and the Book of Mormon -- 2 once great civiizations, destroyed by civil war => divided by; education, culture, and class.]

    I can remember when discrimination was a virtue. It was an indication of education, culture, and class.

    [Discrimination has NEVER been a virtue, EVER!]

  • Contrariuserer mid-state, TN
    Dec. 3, 2013 9:03 a.m.

    @Charles S --

    " If someone wants to discriminate against another person for whatever reason they choose, who are you to say they can not? "

    It's the Constitution that says they can not. Do the words "all men are created equal" and "Equal Protection Clause" ring any bells?

    "If someone wants to discriminate, they will no matter what a law says. "

    And if someone wants to commit murder, they will do so no matter what a law says. Shall we therefore repeal all murder laws?

    "ps, anyone see the update on the story about the homosexual waitress who claimed a couple stiffed her on the tip because of her behavior? In case you missed it - the story was bogus."

    She was one waitress riding on the coattails of other stiffed waiters. That same experience has happened to multiple others. Look up the case at a Carabba's in Kansas for just one recent example. The customers wrote "we cannot in good conscience tip you, for your homosexual lifestyle is an affront to God" on their receipt.

  • Charles S Freedomville, AZ
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:44 p.m.

    As I have said before numerous times, ALL "anti-discrimination" laws should be repealed. If someone wants to discriminate against another person for whatever reason they choose, who are you to say they can not? Who are you to force someone to provide a service to someone they choose not to?

    When does the victimhood end? How many special classes can we create?

    If someone wants to discriminate, they will no matter what a law says. People can choose to do business with the company or not.

    Society may not like discrimination but it has no business in outlawing it. Regarding many different choices in life, there is no way to outlaw stupidity.

    Discrimination happens, will continue to happen and there is NOTHING that anyone can do to stop it.

    ps, anyone see the update on the story about the homosexual waitress who claimed a couple stiffed her on the tip because of her behavior? In case you missed it - the story was bogus.

  • Kimber Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:47 p.m.

    Very good Emily! And I find that this is like a "skeleton in the closet" with many people. They are scared of it (but don't like to talk about it much). It's time that we do and try and make things fair for everyone in our state.

  • RFLASH Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:59 p.m.

    What kind of person refers to discrimination as a virtue? I don't understand why so many people feel a need to degrade and discriminate? I grew up Mormon. Any one of them can get in my face and say whatever they want. They know it isn't right to treat us that way, but many do it anyway! I have had a hard time, because growing up I always felt a wonderful bond to other members of the Church and I still have a hard time seeing myself as an outsider. It is too hard to be there! I have been fired and I was ridiculed. I was still active in Church and I hadn't come out. During meetings in Church, they discussed my sexuality and many horrible lies were accepted as truth. That discrimination almost killed me! To this day it haunts me and I keep hoping for a day when I can sit with friends and feel like one of them again. It will never happen! There are no words to express how it feels for the people you love to treat you like that! I would rather die than ever make somebody feel it!

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:45 p.m.

    @jsf --

    "My grandfather died of lung cancer..."

    I guess you missed that part where I specifically said "usually".

    In fact, the American Lung Association reports that active smoking is the cause of 90% of all lung cancer cases.

    "Your argument supports those who state, gay is a choice."

    Nope. Sexual orientation is NOT a choice. Did you ever choose to be straight?

    And if you insist that orientation is a choice, please present some evidence. Be specific.

    "There are those who are obese not by choice"

    In my earlier post I specifically stated that obesity is a choice "in most cases".

    In fact, you seem to keep missing a lot of the things that I write. Perhaps you should try reading more slowly.

    35% of the US population is now classified as obese. That percentage has risen alarmingly in the last few decades. I assure you that 35% of the population didn't suddenly contract some horrible disease that caused that obesity epidemic. What they did do, however, is change their diets and activity levels.

    "Discrimination for any reason is wrong."

    Of course it is. And anti-gay-discrimination legislation will address one target of that deplorable tendency to discriminate.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 12:12 p.m.

    Ranch I was not referring to you, I apologize for that inference you took. It was a statement by the person you were giving accolades to. His actual word used was "loath". Please accept my apology. I agree it does tend to get a little ideological in these postings.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:53 a.m.

    @jsf;

    I don't "loathe" LDS members (the majority of my family is LDS). But is really, really get tired of all the LDS holier than thou-ness displayed on these DN threads. You guys can be really sick sometimes; and the DN moderators have no problem letting LDS people say vile things about others at all.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 11:47 a.m.

    "Disease" and "choice" are not mutually exclusive categories. For example, lung cancer is a disease -- but it's usually caused by the choice of smoking."

    My grandfather died of lung cancer, did not smoke, my daughter who has never smoked is being monitored for lung cancer. Your argument supports those who state, gay is a choice. And they bring discrimination on them selves.

    "Genetic" and "choice" are not mutually exclusive categories." Nor are they mutually inclusive.

    There are those who are obese not by choice, because your obesity is by choice doesn't negate those who are not by choice. My wife is dependent on heart medication that has the main and top listed side effect of weight gain. Her heart was not damaged by choice. Yes she is discriminated against often. Your statement that they bring discrimination on themselves is the same bigotry you claim to decry regarding the LGBT.

    Discrimination for any reason is wrong.

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:56 a.m.

    @jsf --

    "Why would a resume state they are gay. "

    In the Harvard study mentioned, two job resumes were sent out to prospective employers with 1700 prospective job openings. The two resumes were identical, except that one resume specifically listed experience as a treasurer in a gay college campus organization, while the other merely referred to being involved in a progressive student alliance.

    Et voila -- 40% difference in interviews.

    "The AMA has now identified obesity as a disease not a choice. "

    "Disease" and "choice" are not mutually exclusive categories. For example, lung cancer is a disease -- but it's usually caused by the choice of smoking.

    Choices have consequences. And sometimes those choices lead to disease.

    "Spoken like a true bigot. "

    I guess you missed the part where I very clearly indicated that I'm obese myself. I'm a realist -- not a bigot.

    Speaking of choices --

    I loudly applaud people like Really, wendell, Ranch, QuercusQate, and everyone else who makes the courageous choice to stand up and speak out for equal rights and their authentic selves, despite the discrimination they have to face every day of their lives. That choice makes an important difference in the real world.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:23 a.m.

    “men whose resumes indicate that they’re gay are 40% less likely to be called in for job interviews.”

    Why would a resume state they are gay. Is that a new job qualification?

    “There is no comparison between obesity and homosexuality. So most obese people have little to complain about, except themselves, if they get discriminated against.”

    The AMA has now identified obesity as a disease not a choice. Have little to complain about, except themselves. Spoken like a true bigot.

    @Ranch @LDS Liberal; There are some like you who are decent people though; keep it up, you buck the stereotypical Mormon image

    Do realize back in June he said he loathed members of the church. Seams he just chooses a different group to hate.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:06 a.m.

    @Really???;

    I understand completely what you've been through as I also went through it myself. When you finally pray to accept yourself as you are, a good person with a different sexual orientation, the guilt and shame will go away. Honest.

    @Monsieur le prof:

    "...I imagine most landlords are interested more with making money and protecting their investment than trying to determine gender proclivities."

    As a gay man, I can assure you that I always paid my rent on time, in full, back in the day when I was a tenant. My landlord loved me and hated to see me move when I bought my first home.

    @Badgerb;

    I have two accounts because I use two computers and had problems with the account when I used the same one on both computers.

    @LDS Liberal;

    I certainly didn't feel "loved and wanted" in the LDS church. The constant negative preaching by the likes of (certain leaders who shall remain nameless) ruined any hope of ever returning. There are some like you who are decent people though; keep it up, you buck the stereotypical Mormon image.

  • wendell provo, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 9:05 a.m.

    As far as discimination goes, Maybe some of you don't see the need for additional protection for the gay community, but I find it very sad that my employer can walk into my office any time he wants and say the following, "Wendell, You are fired because you are gay". I'm quite sure it wouldn't happen, but he could legally do exactly that, and I would have no viable recourse.

  • wendell provo, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 8:35 a.m.

    @Really

    I understand. I spent nearly 40 years pretending to be something I am not. On the instruction I received from my LDS leaders, I got married and had 5 amazing children. However, after 20 years of "faking it", I came to the realization that there were only 2 options to explain why God did not fix me as my church leaders (including a high-ranking LDS apostle) assured me he would - Either God is not who he claims to be or God doesn't think being gay is something that needs to be fixed.

    I was told to get married, live a straight lifestyle, and NEVER tell my wife I am gay. The instruction was poor, but I do not believe the church was lying to me - I believe they were sincere in their advice. Luckily they no longer give this instruction.

    Anyway...I have left the church, accepted my sexuality, and have been recently legally married to the most wonderful man on the earth. What I did is not the right choice for everyone, but I have never been happier, and for the first time in my life, I can honestly say I know God loves me just the way I am.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:40 a.m.

    @Really???;

    I understand completely what you've been through as I also went through it myself. When you finally pray to accept yourself as you are, a good person with a different sexual orientation, the guilt and shame will go away. Honest. It really does get better.

    @Monsieur le prof:

    "...I imagine most landlords are interested more with making money and protecting their investment than trying to determine gender proclivities."

    As a gay man, I can assure you that I always paid my rent on time, in full, back in the day when I was a tenant. My landlord loved me and hated to see me move when I bought my first home.

    @Badgerb;

    I have two accounts because I use two computers and had problems with the account when I used the same one on both computers.

    @LDS Liberal;

    I certainly didn't feel "loved and wanted" in the LDS church. The constant negative preaching by the likes of DHO & BKP ruined any hope of ever returning. There are some like you who are decent people though; keep it up, you buck the stereotypical Mormon image.

  • spring street SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 8:59 p.m.

    I find it humorous that the same people that claim the LGBT community are always looking to be offended and looking for special rights are the same people that constantly flood these threads on the DN whenever they think there has been the smallest slight to their religion and seek for ever more expansive rights to push their religious freedoms well beyond the church doors.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 2:31 p.m.

    @Stalwart Sentinel 10:36 a.m. Dec. 1, 2013

    Really??? - I assume you are LDS, like me, and, while I am not gay, there is an increasing number of active members who are willing to stand next to you and fight against the LGBT stereotypes and discrimination that are perpetrated by society in Utah. . .

    ------------------

    You're right. My husband, sons, an I are all stalwart LDS, an we have ought against the LGBT stereotypes an discrimination, and or their civil rights, for over 30 years. When I was practicing law, I did a lot of pro bono work for people with AIDS. Stay tough, Really, and others like you. You are not alone.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Dec. 1, 2013 12:43 p.m.

    Really?

    Your story resembles those of other oppressed groups who found that even going above and beyond wasn't enough. I know there are many other of our LDS LGBT brothers and sisters who have similar stories. Sadly, bigotry is not confined just to UT Mormons or otherwise but can be found many places. (Although many places I've lived, a predominant number of LDS members had roots in UT, ID, or attended/graduated from BYU) When I hear it i try to confront it. I think your story is very important and valuable. Maybe it will prompt some readers here to dig a little deeper and move beyond their ignorance. I'm glad you shared it with us, and I am sorry so many of us seem to have totally missed the Gospel as taught by Jesus.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 11:37 a.m.

    Really???

    Kearns, UT

    ========

    Hang in there good brother.

    We need you.
    We ALL need you.

    You are loved AND wanted in the Church.

    The Gospel of Jesus Christ tells us that we are all like passengers on the Titanic.
    We are ALL doomed.

    The Savior made it into the first life boat,
    and started pulling others into the boat with him.
    He then commanded them, to do likewise...
    Starting pulling everyone you can into the lifeboats....
    NO respecter of persons.

    He'll judge us all LATER,
    but for now...
    Keep fishing your fellow men out of the water!

    As Latter-Day Saints,
    we should all know this.

    Sadly, most still do not get it.

    ~Peace, Love, out.

  • Stalwart Sentinel San Jose, CA
    Dec. 1, 2013 10:36 a.m.

    Really??? - I assume you are LDS, like me, and, while I am not gay, there is an increasing number of active members who are willing to stand next to you and fight against the LGBT stereotypes and discrimination that are perpetrated by society in Utah; it is very unfortunate that fellow Church members are the predominant factor in such a community but time is on our side and your kindness can be the most powerful tool in turning their hearts.

    Stay strong.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:50 a.m.

    Monsieur le prof: "Do they wear signs advertising their sexual orientations? ...I imagine most landlords are interested more with making money and protecting their investment than trying to determine gender proclivities."

    Signs are unnecessary and landlords (and employers) don't have to ask. They can make inferences. Is an applicant wearing a wedding ring? Straight. Two men looking at a one bedroom apartment? Could be gay. Got a family photo on the desk with wife and kids? Straight. Avoids referring to a significant other by name or with gender-specific pronouns? Gay.

    Monsieur le prof: "Were I a landlord, I would want my tenants to be reliable, trustworthy, financially stable and unlikely to skip out without paying."

    As a landlord myself, I have sometimes toyed with placing an ad for "gays only" because gays tend to be more financially stable than the general population (fewer kids, among other things) and (if you subscribe to the stereotypes) take care of property better.

    Monsieur le prof: "...so sensitive that any slight is blown out of proportion"

    Easy to say from a position of privilege and advantage. Try some empathy. Look up "invisible backpacks."

  • Really??? Kearns, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:31 a.m.

    I was also assaulted this past summer while jogging in my neighborhood park. I reported it to the police. While being questioned, the officer asked why I thought I was attacked. All I said was "I don't know." The truth is I did know, but I didn't want it to get out to the public. The man called me a bigoted slur that I cannot nor will not repeat on this forum. He let me know why he chose to hit me.

    The shame I get from reading so many attitudes I see expressed here in this newspaper kept me from being honest about the reasons for the crime. What's to stop this man from hurting somebody else for the same reason.

    On a positive note, I have been employed with an organization that protects ALL employees from workplace discrimination for eight years now. I have been promoted and experienced a pleasant working conditions. I am very happy there. It's too bad so many companies don't see the value in protecting everyone.

  • Really??? Kearns, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:27 a.m.

    I don't think many of you on here really understand how lonely it can get when people like me choose to live up to your expectations. While you may have experienced discrimination in some form--and I am sorry you have--you cannot discount what it's like to be gay in a community that demands so much conformity. It's hard.

    I live in the suburbs, and I really only have one family on my street who will talk with me on a regular basis. They are a wonderful family, and I am grateful for their kindness. Why don't the other neighbors stop by and talk when I am out working in the yard? I have made the efforts, but they just don't want to get to know their single (gay) neighbor.

  • Really??? Kearns, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:22 a.m.

    Regardless of that, I was always overlooked for promotions and put in the pool of employees to be let go when layoffs loomed. One supervisor told me I was taken out of consideration for a promotion because I was single, but her tone and facial expressions told me more. She was truly sorry that her managers wouldn't allow me to move up in the company.

    I am still active in my church, and it's a lonely life. A few years ago I tried to stop pretending that I would change. That meant no more dating women and giving them the false idea that something more than just friendship would happen between us. I still haven't announced to anyone that I am gay, but some in my circle of friends have figured it out, and they have stopped associating with me.

  • Really??? Kearns, UT
    Dec. 1, 2013 9:18 a.m.

    Okay, I have to chime in, and I have to admit something that I have never mentioned on these boards. I am gay. It's a private matter that I have kept to myself, a few close friends, and some family members. I don't parade around, wave rainbow flags, kiss, or hold hands in public. I have been conditioned to be ashamed of who I am, even after hundreds--probably thousands--of hours of prayer and pleading to help me change this part of me.

    Since graduating college, I have had six different jobs. At each of those jobs, I always received excellent evaluations from my supervisors. I would always get to work early and stay a little bit longer than was expected. I volunteered for extra responsibilities, and I implemented innovative practices that streamlined the work.

  • Contrariusiest mid-state, TN
    Dec. 1, 2013 7:56 a.m.

    @Monsieur --

    "How did these people know they were being discriminated against?"

    When a person is beaten -- sometimes to death -- on a city street while their attacker yells homophobic slurs at them, the reason is pretty obvious (multiple occurrences).

    When a much-loved college women's soccer coach is fired immediately after telling her team that her female partner is pregnant, the reason is pretty obvious (Belmont University, Nashville).

    When two women with stable jobs in a small Utah town are both fired soon after rumors start circulating that they are lesbians, the reason is pretty obvious (QuercusQate, a poster here on the DN site).

    When a waiter is denied a tip at a restaurant, and the customer writes on the receipt "we cannot in good conscience tip you, for your homosexual lifestyle is an affront to God", the reason is pretty obvious (Carabba's, Kansas).

    When a transsexual woman is forced to remove her makeup and loudly ridiculed by state employees before she is allowed to obtain an official state ID, the reason is pretty obvious (SLC Driver's License office).

    These sorts of things happen all the time. Pretending that they don't won't change the facts.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Nov. 30, 2013 11:49 p.m.

    Monsieur le prof-

    So nicely said!

    Contra-

    It is clear you only see a narrow view of the issue of discrimination, and refuse to consider others who are also discriminated against. The vast majority of Americans are discriminated against at some point in their life, for some reason such as the ones I included in my first post. It is not unique to your characteristics.

    The laws already protect you equally. If the laws aren't being sufficiently enforced, more specially written laws won't change that.

    LPS (as I don't have multiple accounts)

  • Monsieur le prof Sandy, UT
    Nov. 30, 2013 11:17 p.m.

    There are many in this community who are easily offended and so sensitive that any slight is blown out of proportion and blamed on discrimination. How did these people know they were being discriminated against? Do they wear signs advertising their sexual orientations? Were I a landlord, I would want my tenants to be reliable, trustworthy, financially stable and unlikely to skip out without paying. I imagine most landlords are interested more with making money and protecting their investment than trying to determine gender proclivities.

  • Contrariusiest mid-state, TN
    Nov. 30, 2013 3:23 p.m.

    @Badgerbadger --

    "It is already illegal to beat or kill HBT people...."

    Anti-discrimination legislation adds weight to the concepts of equality and equal protection, which reverberates across many crimes -- including violent hate crimes.

    Remember lynchings? They were already illegal well before the Civil Rights Act, too.

    "Fat people suffer discrimination at much higher rates than LGTB."

    Who says? If you believe so, prove it. Please provide some specific evidence.

    "That is the bigger problem. "

    Nope. Once again -- choice. And again, very few people are beaten, killed, or thrown out of their homes by their parents just for being fat.

    "...obesity is a genetic disorder. "

    Nope. A *propensity* towards obesity can be genetic, just as a propensity towards alcoholism can be. And, in some cases, obesity is truly medically unavoidable. But in most cases, obesity is a matter of choosing to eat too much and exercise too little.

    "....laws designed to address it have not helped abate it."

    Of course they have. To claim otherwise is just silly. No law can magically prevent ALL discrimination, but laws do provide powerful tools with which to fight it.

    "More special rights laws are not the answer. "

    Nobody wants "special" rights. Only equal ones.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Nov. 30, 2013 2:59 p.m.

    It is already illegal to beat or kill HBT people. They don't need a special law. They are already covered, so take that non-issue off the table.

    Fat people suffer discrimination at much higher rates than LGTB. That is the bigger problem. And there is ever mounting evidence that obesity is a genetic disorder.

    But again I remind you that discrimination is rampant against all classifications of people, and the laws designed to address it have not helped abate it. More special rights laws are not the answer.

    Try being nice. That helps sometimes, not always, but sometimes.

  • Contrariusiest mid-state, TN
    Nov. 30, 2013 1:14 p.m.

    @Badgerbadger --

    "35.9% of American adults are obese. "

    Ahhhh, now you have given up on race, gender, religion, and disability, and you're left with only the poor discriminated-against obese to worry about?

    You've made a lot of progress already. ;-)

    As for obesity: guess what -- I'm obese myself. And the fact is that, in most cases, obesity is a choice. I myself lost over 100 pounds about 10 years ago, because I chose to -- and I'm obese now, because I choose to not put the effort into being otherwise. So most obese people have little to complain about, except themselves, if they get discriminated against.

    In contrast, sexual orientation is NOT a choice. Did you ever "choose" to be straight? No, of course not. And neither do gay people

    There is no comparison between obesity and homosexuality.

    "Surely the bigger problem (no pun intended) should be the top priority."

    Yes. And guess what again: gay people in this country are still 8 times more likely to be the victims of violent crimes than straight people. They are beaten and killed regularly, not to mention constantly denied opportunities, simply because of their orientation. And that kind of mistreatment IS the "bigger problem".

  • ClarkHippo Tooele, UT
    Nov. 30, 2013 12:47 p.m.

    As a Latter-day Saint, and also as a registered Republican, I feel a statewide law protecting the LGBT community from discrimination, identical to the law passed in Salt Lake City, is totally okay with me.

    Why?

    1. I find nothing in this law that would hinder freedom of speech, religion, press or assembly.

    2. I don't see how this law gives anyone a "special" right. I have several friends who are gay or lesbian and if they want to in an aprtment or townhouse in a city live like Murray or Taylorsville, who am I to say No to that?

    3. If there were indeed situations in which men were putting on dresses so they could go into bathrooms and assault women, where are the news accounts of this happening? I'm sure if there were even two or three of these type of these crimes, Drudge Report or Fox News would be on it in a heartbeat.

    I admit I don't like the idea of government passing silly laws like what type of soda I can drink, but clearly this is a problem and it should be addressed, so I say YES to this this statewide anti-discrimination law.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Nov. 30, 2013 12:01 p.m.

    Contra -

    35.9% of American adults are obese. They are discriminated against everywhere and in every way!!! Particularly in employment. Yet there is no law to protect them from such discrimination.

    Surely the bigger problem (no pun intended) should be the top priority.

    As far as the ADA, and the civil rights acts, yes they exist, and the discrimination goes on anyway. In some cases the DISCRIMINATION IS CAUSED by the civil rights laws.

    You might be putting too much faith in your government to fix those who are cruel. So far all they have done is transfer who is the recipient of the cruel people. It seems to me (and many others) that your group seeks not to end misdeeds, but to transfer recipients yet again.

  • HaHaHaHa Othello, WA
    Nov. 30, 2013 11:58 a.m.

    How precious. What a country we live in, where one group can complain about the majority living their life, but in the next breath the group has no problem with forcing their morality on the majority. We have plenty of civil rights laws in this country, we don't need special rights for certain segments of society. In a country of freedom, we don't need to micro manage every segment of peoples lives. If we want to remove all freedoms, we could get rid of drug dealers, rapists, and thieves tomorrow!!

  • Pagan Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 30, 2013 11:56 a.m.

    Let's look to our Republican leadership…

    'Republican Debate Audience Boos Gay Soldier Stephen Hill After DADT Repeal Question' - By Jason Linkins - Huffington Post - 09/23/11

    **Gays GREATEST THREAT TO AMERICA, Buttars says' - By Aaron Falk - DSnews - 02/19/09

    I see no reason to support a political party that not only refuses to take action against, clear and evident discrimination to LGBT Americans…

    but seems to actually participate, in it.

    Buttars election in 2000, 2004 and 2008. on a Republican ticket, in Utah.

    WWJD?

  • Pagan Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 30, 2013 11:49 a.m.

    'In short, I'm sick of the self-righteous intolerance of the LGBT community.'

    'Study: Gay Men Offered Fewer Job Interviews' - By Winston Gieseke - The Advocate - 10/04/11

    'According to a study published today in the American Journal of Sociology, men whose resumes indicate that they’re gay are 40% less likely to be called in for job interviews, especially in the south or Midwest.' – article

    And then…

    Safety of gay people topic of Salt Lake discussion' - By Jennifer Dobner - AP - Published by DSNews – 07/14/10

    'The high-profile incidents — from the 2008 beating of a South Salt Lake man in his home by angry neighbors, to an alleged April assault of two men at a Salt Lake City pub, and reaction when a gay couple kissed on the Mormon church's Main Street Plaza in 2009 — has left many in the gay community feeling vulnerable, center Executive Director Valerie Larabee said.'

    WWJD?

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 30, 2013 11:34 a.m.

    Sal: " Leave out the bathroom stuff...."
    Sven: "... to decide on a whim what bathroom to use."

    I've heard the bathroom argument several times from different quarters in the past few weeks, often in reference to some vaguely unspecified law that would open up women's rooms to any man in a dress. I don't recall this coming up when SLC debated the nondiscrimination ordinance. What is the source of this meme? It strikes me as a desperate effort to find some argument that will find traction in a country that generally supports GLBT rights. Bathrooms, the last refuge of a scoundrel, I guess. It reminds me of the Equal Rights Amendment days, when opponents argued that it would mandate unisex toilets. Fearmongering in the loo.

    No transperson "decides on a whim" his or her gender any more than a cisperson does. To even suggest such a thing betrays a remarkable lack of knowledge of their condition.

    Sven: "please provide specific examples of LGBTs who've been fired from their jobs..."

    Your turn. Having raised the bathroom issue, please provide examples of fraudulent crossdressing to gain access to opposite sex bathrooms for voyeurism or assaults.

  • Contrariusier mid-state, TN
    Nov. 30, 2013 8:20 a.m.

    @Badgerbadger --

    "Wow will our legislators be busy writing special rights laws for all those people!!!"

    Actually, for those groups who actually HAVE experienced such high levels of discrimination, such laws already exist. It's called the Civil Rights Act -- and the Americans with Disabilities Act -- and other associated anti-discrimination legislation. It protects those groups which have experienced discrimination, including the characteristics you mentioned such as religion, disability, race, and gender.

    There is currently NO such protection for LGBT people.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    Nov. 30, 2013 7:32 a.m.

    When was discrimination a "virtue"? Does the scripture say, "Whatever you do to the least of these my brethren, you do it unto them, and keep right on doing it"?

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Nov. 30, 2013 12:16 a.m.

    4 in 10 people have experienced discrimination in employment, college access, or housing if:

    They are male
    They are female
    They are White
    They are Black
    They are Brown
    They are Mormon
    They are Catholic
    They are Protestant
    They are Jewish
    They are from another part of the country
    They are from another part of the world
    Because they were locally raised and not diverse enough
    They are single
    They are married with children

    And 9 of 10 people have experienced discrimination if:

    They are not good looking
    They are fat
    They have a disability

    Wow will our legislators be busy writing special rights laws for all those people!!!

  • E Sam Provo, UT
    Nov. 29, 2013 9:44 p.m.

    Superb letter. Thanks for writing.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    Nov. 29, 2013 3:33 p.m.

    "I'm just wondering when discrimination became the "greatest of all sins" in our society."

    What part of, "All men created equal" do you not understand?

    If we cannot treat everyone as equals and must discriminate others, then what the heck is our government worth? Lets just abolish our government, get rid of the Bill of Rights, and live in caves like in Afghanistan. Lets discriminate and hate based on sexuality, gender, race, and religion.

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    Nov. 29, 2013 1:56 p.m.

    @Sven --

    "Emily, please provide specific examples... "

    We've had specific, first person accounts right here in the DN comments section, on previous articles.

    Here's a few additional random examples of anti-gay discrimination in Utah from a quick google search.

    2011 -- a transgendered woman in SLC was forced to remove her makeup and loudly ridiculed by Dept of Transportation employees before she was allowed to obtain a state ID card. Notably it was not the transgendered woman who made the complaint, but an unassociated bystander who happened to witness the mistreatment.

    2009 -- **42 percent** of the homeless youths served at the Salt Lake City Homeless Youth Resource Center identified as LGBT. Many of them had run away or been cast away from homes where they were not accepted after they came out.

    Utah law decrees that single gay people, but NOT committed gay couples, can adopt children in Utah.

    2008 -- a gay couple in SLC living next door to a family were accused of kidnapping when the family's children wandered over to their home during a party. The couple was viciously beaten with a frying pan, a flat screen TV, and other implements by the partygoers.

  • Machado South Jordan, UT
    Nov. 29, 2013 1:29 p.m.

    I'm just wondering when discrimination became the "greatest of all sins" in our society. Have we really become so filled with lust that immorality is now a minor sin (if it is a sin at all) and discrimination is egregiously bad. I can remember when discrimination was a virtue. It was an indication of education, culture, and class.

    Despite what some people want us to believe there is still a difference between good and bad, tasteful and tasteless, pure and tainted, sweet and fetid, Bedford Falls and Pottersville.

    Not being hindered by your blindness, I can clearly see the differences. Ironically, my ability to see bothers you so you want to force me to be as blind as you are. In short, I'm sick of the self-righteous intolerance of the LGBT community.

  • Sven Morgan, UT
    Nov. 29, 2013 12:34 p.m.

    No Emily, Ms. Valentine's argument isn't ridiculous at all. She specifically pointed out that there is "no official process by which a person declares their gender identity..." Only LGBT activists wouldn't see a problem with allowing those who don't know what their sexual identity is, to decide on a whim what bathroom to use. You don't want LGBTs to be uncomfortable, but have no problem with others being made to feel uncomfortable.

    Emily, please provide specific examples of LGBTs who've been fired from their jobs, or evicted from their homes based on their sexual preference? Sadly, the LGBT activists live in the "ends justify the means" world. Looks like new details are coming out in the Matthew Shepard murder, which was the catalyst for the need for special rights for Gays. It appears his death may have been over drugs, and not his sexual orientation, as was originally touted. It also looks like the Gay NJ waitress (Danya Morales) was lying about the anti-gay note she said she received from the couple eating at the restaurant where she works.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Nov. 29, 2013 11:57 a.m.

    Agreed.

    And thanks for making the point about the LDS Church's endorsement,
    and the State Republicans refusal to comply.

    I support the LDS Church's position,
    and soundly reject the Utah State Republicans.

  • Sal Provo, UT
    Nov. 29, 2013 8:58 a.m.

    Perhaps you are exaggerating about an army of men in girls' bathrooms. One perverted man would be bad enough. And he could enter at will claiming he is a female.

    So pass a law protecting housing and employment only. Leave out the bathroom stuff. If you look like a man, stay out of women's bathrooms and vice versa.

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    Nov. 29, 2013 8:49 a.m.

    "the fear for gay and transgender Utahns is real. In fact, four in 10 LGBT Utahns report having faced discrimination from employers and landlords. It’s past time we amend existing Utah law to include sexual orientation and gender identity alongside religion, age, race, color, sex, pregnancy, national origin and disability."

    Great comments!

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 29, 2013 8:14 a.m.

    Awesome letter, Emily. You nailed it. Thank you.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Nov. 29, 2013 1:34 a.m.

    Agreed.

    The Attitude of the LDS leadership is at odds with many of it's members.

    The quorum of the 12 has an entire website directed to the LGBT members to - 'Stay With Us'.

    and yet,
    many members are still hurling stones at them.

    This is a Utah Mormon cultural homophobia bigotry thing,
    and NOT an LDS Church thing.