Thursday, February 10, 2011

Is It Time To Execute The Louisville Option?

There has been justified  grousing over the fact the just introduced GINDA in Maryland does not have 'public accommodations language in it and our GL allies are indifferent or clueless about how that affects us.

But what are we going to do about it?

We can lobby legislators in Maryland to put that language back in, or execute the Louisville Option and kill the bad bill.

What's the Louisville Option you asked?    Grab a seat because school is now in session.

Back in 1997 a Fairness Ordinance was proposed that over their objections, cut trans people out of the measure in the 'incremental progress' groupthink prevalent at the time among GLBT rights proponents.

But in this case, far from taking that lying down, the trans community activists fought back and lobbied the Louisville Board of Aldermen to successfully flip two yes votes into abstentions that turned what was predicted to be a 7-4 loss into a 7-2 one.for the LGB only bill.    

Two years later with the message sent to the GLB community and received that the only way forward was doing so together combined with a timely and highly publicized egregious example of anti GLBT discrimination,  a fully inclusive Fairness Ordinance was proposed and passed on a 7-5 vote in January 1999.

The inclusive Louisville law was a model for the ones that passed in Lexington and Covington KY, and the one currently being considered in Richmond, KY.    The Fairness Campaign in Louisville, Lexington Fairness and the Kentucky Fairness Alliance are also award winning role models as to how to collectively work together to advance GLBT rights without leaving anyone behind.

With transpeople being cut out of legislation we sorely need at a disgusting pace, is it time for trans communities around the nation to execute the Louisville Option?

I think it's past time to send the message that we're sick and tired of being treated as civil rights stepchildren and how disgusted we are about it.   If we are equal partners in this community, then it's past time for you to live up to your own Dallas Principles and act like it.

If GL activists don't cease and desist on the negative civil rights behavior, we trans folks will not only be tough minded enough to mobilize our troops and supporters to help us kill those non-inclusive trans rights bills, but be tough minded enough to cause problems with other non inclusive gay only legislation as well.

And if you think I'm kidding, ask peeps on the Hill how much drama we caused after Barney cut us out of ENDA in 2007.

Your call, GL community.

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