March 28, 2011

Maryland's Transvestite Protection Act

Maryland Delegate Mike McDermott (a true public servant if ever there was one) reported in his Field Notes Post on Sunday that the Maryland House passed what is euphemistically called a 'Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Anti-discrimination' bill during Saturday's session.

Mike's comment:

"..One of the more disturbing bills passed on Saturday was HB-235. This is the “transgender, cross-dresser” bill which now requires for employer accommodations of these confused individuals. The bill will allow for our public school teachers to call themselves “Bob” one week and “Bonnie” the next week.

"It will be a real problem for small business and big business alike and is sure to be just one more reason not to move a family or a business into Maryland. Myself and Delegate Otto did not vote for this bill for reasons too numerous to name..."

[The bill info for HB235, including a link to the actual text of the bill can be found here.]

One might wonder about the fact that the voting took place on Saturday, though that may have just been where it popped up in the logjam, but this bill sure seems to have been moved under the radar.

The Gay Marriage issue had been pretty much front-and-center for a good while, and that may have diverted attention from HB235. But there has been little mention of it in the 'press' in the days coming up to the vote-- a fact that makes it look even more like the Stealth bill it apparently is.

One of the main points of the legislation seems to be that if some guy is 'feeling pretty' today and wants to put on full makeup and a lovely print dress for work, not much can be said. An employer will be required to make accommodation.

Somebody will say "It's about time. This is America. You can be whatever you want to be."

But what happens when he has to 'tinkle' and he heads for the ladies room?

Are you liberal ladies going to be OK with that? How about your husbands?

And, as Delegate McDermott indicated, this could even show up in our schools. What a wonderful thought.

Delegate Rudolph Cane said the bill is about "ending discrimination."

That's a pretty selective application of that concept.

So if a male teacher comes to work wearing a dress, that's fine-- his 'right'-- but if he were to come to work carrying a Bible, what then?

Imagine when Podunk Tractor Supply's parts-counter guy decides to start coming to work as 'Jane' instead of Joe, and their parts business falls off to nothing. They're stewed. Can't discriminate, you know.

And how about Betty (who'd rather be called 'Bill')-- one day when she goes to the beach, she decides to just put on some swim trunks like the other 'guys' and skip the top.

"They don't have to wear one, so why should I?"

You have to wonder what's going through the heads of the many 'delegates' who sponsored and voted for this bill. The only thing I can think of is 'upcoming election' and votes (though the word 'pandering' also comes to mind.)

But I think they've really stepped in something this time. This is radical, even for the People's Republic of Maryland.

The bill now moves to the Senate's Judicial Proceeding Committee for amendments and according to the Maryland House's clerk office, should receive a vote on the Senate floor before the end of this year's legislative session on April 11.

I'll be amazed if we hear anything about it before that vote takes place. Monty Vernon

SOURCE: Salisbury News

1 comment:

Zoe Brain said...

First, it's been diverted to the Rules Committee, so no chance of passing this year.

Second - you do realise that a far more extensive bill was passed in Montgomery County two years ago? That if any of the fears of African Elephants falling from the sky onto restrooms, or Rapists dressing in drag to access women's rooms, or water in the toilets turning to blood etc if this bill was passed must have already been happening, but much worse, in Montgomery county.

And in 13 states and over 120 other counties and cities in the USA, for as long as 35 years. Which is when such bills were first passed.

Yet somehow... no rains of African Elephants smashing the washbasins. Not a single case of a rapist in drag (though many not in drag in places without such bills) in female restrooms. Zero. Zilch. None. Nada.

As scare campaigns go, this one's been remarkably effective. But also remarkably silly.