#AM_Equality Tip Sheet: July 20, 2016
TONIGHT AT THE RNC: ANTI-LGBTQ MIKE PENCE TO ACCEPT VEEP NOMINATION, PROGRAM FEATURES ANTI-EQUALITY POLS TED CRUZ AND PAM BONDI: The third day of the Republican National Convention features a parade of Republican officials who’ve consistently worked against LGBTQ equality throughout their careers -- including Ted Cruz, who ended his failed presidential campaign with a false smear attack on transgender people, and Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, whose anti-LGBTQ record was on full display under questioning from CNN’s Anderson Cooper in the wake of Orlando. The evening will be capped off with an address by vice presidential nominee Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, who became a national disgrace in 2015 for his “license to discriminate” bill that could have allowed businesses to deny service to LGBTQ people. More on Pence’s long anti-equality record here.
RNC CHAIR PRIEBUS TRIES TO DENY ANTI-LGBTQ EXTENT OF PARTY’S PLATFORM: Republican National Committee delegates Monday opened their party convention by approving a heinous platform with a slew of anti-equality provisions, including attacks on transgender people and a commitment to overturn nationwide marriage equality. But RNC Chair Reince Priebus is trying to deny just how extreme the platform is, deceptively claiming in an interview with Chuck Todd that the platform doesn’t endorse conversion therapy. The amendment adopted by the platform committee explicitly supported conversation therapy. Party leaders modified the final language to keep the extreme position, but make it far less obvious. The context of the entire debate around this makes it crystal clear that “support[ing] the right of parents to determine the proper medical treatment and therapy for their minor children” means continuing to allow this harmful practice to be lawful. The fact that Tony Perkins and his allies didn’t raise a ruckus when the language was tweaked tells you all you need to know.
- Also in RNC Recapping… Ben Carson, speaking at the Florida delegation breakfast, compared transgender people to someone who “woke up tomorrow morning after seeing a movie about Afghanistan and saying ‘you know what? I’m Afghanistani [sic].” Said HRC President Chad Griffin in a tweet: “What doesn't make sense is @RealBenCarson's ignorance of the medical community's consensus about transgender people.” More from The Hill.
- Michael Flynn’s transphobic rhetoric: Watch retired U.S. Army Lieutenant General Michael Flynn launch a vile attack on transgender people during his speech Monday. Flynn’s rhetoric is consistent with the RNC Platform, and Donald Trump, who has gone on the record in support of North Carolina’s vile HB2. More here.
- Get the facts: HRC has released a video detailing the harsh reality that everything the LGBTQ community has fought for is at risk this election -- from LGBTQ worker protections and the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” to transgender equality, marriage equality and global LGBTQ rights. As of last night, Donald Trump is the party’s official nominee. Watch the video here.
MCCRORY SELF-CONGRATULATES FOR UNDOING HIS OWN MISTAKE: North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory bizarrely patted himself on the back this week for repealing a provision within HB2 that he signed -- and then almost immediately was forced to admit was “very poorly thought out.” McCrory this week restored the right to sue in state court for employment discrimination -- though it shortened the window for employees to file those suits -- but of course, he left intact the most vile anti-LGBTQ provisions of the deeply discriminatory HB2 law. The law has eliminated existing municipal non-discrimination protections for LGBTQ people and prevents such protections from being passed by cities in the future. Furthermore, it unacceptably continues to prevent transgender students in public schools from using restrooms and other facilities consistent with their gender identity. More from HRC and The News and Observer.
HRC AND WALGREENS PARTNER ON NEW LGBTQ-INCLUSIVE GUIDE FOR PHARMACISTS AND STAFF: This week, the HRC Foundation in partnership with Walgreens, released a resource guide that helps pharmacists better understand the needs of LGBTQ customers and patients. The guide is being distributed by the pharmacy giant to more than 70,000 health care professionals across the country. Read the full resource guide here.
ANTI-EQUALITY ACTIVISTS ATTEMPTING TO REPEAL MA TRANS LAW: Anti-LGBTQ activists are at it again in Massachusetts, where they just filed a formal request to put the the state’s new trans-inclusive non-discrimination law on the ballot this November. If granted, they will have until late September to collect 32,275 names to force a fall referendum. More from The Boston Globe.
- Meanwhile in West Virginia: Despite the fact that his district was recently ravaged by devastating floods, anti-LGBTQ State Senator Robert Karnes is planning to hijack an expected special session focused on flood relief, by pushing for HB2-style anti-transgender legislation. Read about his despicable plan at the West Virginia Gazette.
VA LEGISLATORS INTRODUCE BILLS TO REPEAL STATE’S STATUTORY BANS ON SAME-SEX MARRIAGE: Virginia State Sen. Adam P. Ebbin and Delegate Mark D. Sickles, both openly gay, have introduced legislation to formally remove from state law and the state constitution language prohibiting marriage for same-sex couples. More from The Richmond Times-Dispatch.
HISTORIC CONGRESSIONAL HEARING ON LGBTQ HUMAN RIGHTS ABROAD: For the first time in Congressional history, a full committee in the U.S. House of Representatives held a hearing last week featuring a witness whose exclusive focus is the human rights of LGBTQ people around the world. The hearing included testimony from Mark Bromley, chair of the Council for Global Equality, a coalition of human rights groups -- including HRC -- that seeks to encourage greater U.S. support for LGBTQ people and communities around the world. More from HRC.
FOOD INSECURITY IN THE LGBTQ COMMUNITY: A new study by The Williams Institute found that one in four LGBTQ adults struggled to feed themselves or their families in the past year, compared to one in six non-LGBTQ adults. More from The New York Times.
SUPPORTING LGBTQ BABY-BOOMERS: San Diego will open its first LGBTQ-friendly affordable senior housing community in December 2017. A study on LGBTQ seniors finds that they are susceptible to poverty; 23 percent earn less than $20,000 a year and 68 percent lack younger friends or family for support. More from San Diego LGBT Weekly.
A STEP BACK IN ROMANIA: Today, the Constitutional Court of Romania ruled that it is not unconstitutional for an anti-LGBTQ group to request to change the country’s constitution to state that marriage is a union between a man and a woman. An actual change to the Romanian constitution requires a two thirds vote of Parliament. More from The Associated Press.
THE ISLE OF LOVE: Starting Friday, same-sex couples on the Isle of Man will be able to marry. This marks final implementation of the Marriage and Civil Partnership Amendment Act. More from Isle of Man Today.
Gay Star News reports that one in three LGBTQ entrepreneurs don’t come out to potential investors; Fusion breaks down the Williams Institute’s study of the number of transgender people residing in each state; OUT Magazine celebrates the late Nelson Mandela’s birthday by sharing five of his inspiring quotes; Howl & Echoes previews Against Me!’s new album that explores transgender themes; The Washington Post shares the personal effect the GOP has had on one transgender woman; Gay Star News introduces us to a new transgender superhero; Roll Call highlights LGBTQ Republicans trying to find their way at the RNC; and NBC News covers the stories of transgender military service members who are now able to serve openly.