Common Sense Rainbow

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What Is The Equality Act And Why We Need To Pass It

Jan 15 2022

The Equality Act (HR5) is a critical piece of legislation that would amend the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to include sexual ordination and gender identity. The Equality Act and a long-needed and essential bill that would protect LGBT+ citizens across the US. Despite all the benefits anti LGBT+ hate groups and politicians are trying to kill this bill. Let's look at why this bill is needed and debunk hateful arguments against it.

Many Americans live in states where LGBT+ discrimination is still legal. For example, almost 30% of Americans live in states where they can be denied housing or even be evicted over them being LGBT+. On top of that 31% of Americans live in states that allow discrimination in public spaces. There are also many states where transgender people are not allowed to go to the bathroom or play sports. The Equality Act would fix this by outlawing discrimination against LGBT+ people. Also, the majority of the public is on board with LGBT+ anti-discrimination laws with 82% of Americans supporting them. This has risen more than 10% from 2015. Also, 63% of Americans oppose religious-based refusal from small businesses over someone being LGBT+.

Now let's debunk the arguments against the Equality Act. The biggest argument against the Equality Act is that it would suppress religious freedom. The thing about religious freedom is that it's not the right to force your beliefs onto others and/or harm them. Harming people is what discrimination does. Discrimination is harmful to mental health and many other parts of people's lives. For example, evicting a gay couple's housing or health care would cause harm.

On top of this religious freedom, the argument would not be a debate if it was about race. Almost no one is calling for race-based discrimination on religious grounds. Race, sexual ordination, and gender identity are not that different. In all cases, you don't choose. Sexual ordination is determined by genes and other factors and gender identity is determined by brain structure and other uncontrollable factors.

The next argument is the Equality Act would destroy woman's spaces. This is because Equality Act would outlaw bathroom bills. We have written about this at length but we will overview it anyways. The main problem with this argument is that bathroom bills don't even work. If a predator wants to go into a bathroom a bathroom bill won't stop them. The predator will be facing huge charges if caught so the relatively small charges from a bathroom bill won't matter to them. Also, they would harm transgender people by forcing them into the wrong bathroom. This would make anti-transgender hate much more prevalent and be very bad for mental health. On top of that bathroom, bills don't acknowledge the fact that not all transgender people are predators. This argument is trying to cause a moral panic and play on people's emotions while having no basis in reality.

The next argument is that it would harm kids. People are saying that the Equality Act would make it easier for kids to undergo medical transition and harm them. The problem is medical transition is not harmful. Puberty blockers we have written about that here but the overview is that They are good for mental health, safe, and reversible. Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) studies have found they are good for mental health. It's also worth noting that regret after transitioning is very low and because the transition is a long process the kid will have time to talk with medical experts and think about if the transition is the best option.

Another argument against the Equality Act is that it would force kids who get adopted to live with same sex couples. The problem here is that there is no problem. Research shows kids who grow up in same sex households fare the same as kids who grow up in opposite-sex households. Not sending kids to same sex households does harm in stopping these kids from getting a home.

Yet another argument is that the Equality Act would allow a transgender woman into woman's sports. The thing with this argument is that when transgender people go through HRT which is required most of the time it brings their physical performance to around that of the opposite sex. Also, transgender kids being able to participate in sports show better mental health and physical health.

Now that we made our case for the Equality Act and debunked all of the arguments against it how can you help pass it? We recommend going to this page here made by the Human Rights Campaign that has all the information you will need to help and more information about the bill.

In conclusion, people against the Equality Act are terrified that they won't be able to discriminate against people anymore. People against the Equality Act have tried to push myths and start a moral panic over our human rights. This bill should have been passed years ago but it's better late than never.