Bigotry in Tennessee

Tennessee Christians like to flaunt their bigotry.

If a proposed new law passes in Tennessee, you may need your ID in order to use the washroom or store fitting room.  Although one of the original sponsors of the bill has withdrawn his sponsorship, it has not been removed from discussion.

A bill that would limit who could enter public restrooms has been filed in the Tennessee General Assembly. The proposed legislation would restrict access to public restrooms and public dressing rooms designated by sex, to members of that particular sex.
State Representative Richard Floyd drafted the legislation after an employee at a Texas Macy’s store was fired in December for stopping a transgender teenager from trying on clothing in a women’s dressing room.

“I cannot imagine firing anybody for something like that. I just cannot, I cannot grasp that, I can’t get my mind around it,” Representative Floyd explained.

The Chattanooga Republican said he did not want anyone in Tennessee to face a similar situation, so he drafted House Bill 2279.

Floyd strongly believes a man does not belong inside a women’s restroom or dressing room, not matter the circumstances.

“I don’t care for what reason, how depraved their mind is, how perverted their mind is, or for what reason they think a man has a right to go into a women’s bathroom, or dressing room to try on clothes,” Floyd said.

How would you police somthing like that? By requiring a birth certificate as proof of your gender. What sort of man would promote such legislation?

FLOYD: I believe if I was standing at a dressing room and my wife or one of my daughters was in the dressing room and a man tried to go in there — I don’t care if he thinks he’s a woman and tries on clothes with them in there — I’d just try to stomp a mudhole in him and then stomp him dry.Don’t ask me to adjust to their perverted way of thinking and put my family at risk. We cannot continue to let these people dominate how society acts and reacts. Now if somebody thinks he’s a woman and he’s a man and wants to try on women’s clothes, let him take them into the men’s bathroom or dressing room.

In an extended interview with WTVF News Chanel 5, Floyd doubled down on his comments, claiming that his bill doesn’t “penalize anybody,” it “protects everybody,” and he could “care less” what transgender advocacy groups think.

I think he means that he ‘couldn’t care less’, but semantics aside, Floyd is a vile excuse for a human being. Of course, although the bill is obviously aimed at transexuals, the effect would be wider, as anyone without an ID could be refused entry into a fitting room or washroom. The law could not be used against anyone who did not meet the attendant’s approval. To top it off, Tennessee does not allow transgendered people to change their gender on official documents.

He’s not the only legislator in the state with such feelings,and as would be expected, the legislation is being pushed by Christians.

The Family Action Council of Tennessee (FACT) is using the suicide of Jacob Rogers — who was bullied relentlessly for being gay — to promote state legislation that would protect bullies who harass other students for their sexual orientation. The “license to bully” bill, HB 1153, was actually introduced last year, but FACT is hoping it will make headway in this new legislative session.

It has been demonstrated that such harassment can lead to suicides of victims, but the right to religious bigotry trumps the safety of individuals.

Harassment, intimidation, or bullying prevention task forces, programs, and other initiatives formed by school districts, including any curriculum adopted for such purposes, shall not include materials or training that explicitly or implicitly promote a political agenda, make the characteristics of the victim the focus rather than the conduct of the person engaged in harassment, intimidation, or bullying, or teach or suggest that certain beliefs or viewpoints are discriminatory when an act or practice based on such belief or viewpoint is not a discriminatory practice

Another bill has been nick-named the ‘Don’t say gay’ bill, as it prevents teachers from any mention of anything other than heterosexual families in K-8 schools, even if some of teh students come from cis-gendered relationships.. The sponsor of the bill, has been working on this for the past 6 years.

You can talk about TEA and NEA resolutions talking about how they think there should be not just tolerance of the lifestyle, but acceptance of it. That flies completely in the face of a lot of people. A lot of people say, hey, I understand tolerance. I’m all for tolerance. I’ve co-sponsored the anti-bullying bill. But to say we have to go to acceptance, that’s something completely different.

He also thinks teachers don’t have enough time to teach core subjects:

If I can take one thing away and say, hey, you don’t have to teach about homosexuality to your second-graders, you can spend more time on arithmetic.

It is not ‘teaching homosexuality’ but being inclusive in teaching family based content.

Tennessee also allows parents to pull their students out of any clubs that the parents disagree with. This is focused primarily at Gay Straight Alliances, clubs that help decrease the amount of bullying against gay students.

While many LGBTs, particularly young people, face harassment in Canada, there is at least official recognition of their rights as individuals. In parts of the US, they receive no such protections. There are many examples throughout the US of similar laws, and the one thing they have in common is the pressure from Christians to get them through the various legislatures. Here on PEI, the religious fight last year was where or not to allow shopping on Sunday. That certainly pales in comparison to the struggles faced to achieve basic human rights in the US.


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3 Responses to Bigotry in Tennessee

  1. As a Tennessean, I’m embarassed by the antics of Representative Floyd and his fellow “Christians”. Tennessee is a beautiful state, stretching many miles from east to west and even farther from right to left. Voters in the easternmost areas of the state tend to be extremely conservative and those in the west more liberal. The line between “Christian Republican” and Dominionist is quickly becoming blurred. It’s up to Tennessee’s voters to educate themselves and vote accordingly instead of voting for the candidates that are so loudly endorsed on Sunday mornings.

  2. Luke eviden says:

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