Are Mutable Characteristics Worthy of Legal Protection?

Employees in the United States are protected from discrimination by the Fourteenth Amendment, which bars states from abridging a citizen’s rights, depriving them of due process, and denying them equal protection of the law.[1]   Traditionally, the court has not recognized sexual orientation or gender identification as a protected class. For instance, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects employees from discrimination based on race, sex, religion and national origin.[2] There have been 51 proposed bills (between 1981-2013) intended to add to Title VII by prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation.[3] They have all failed. The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Ulane v. Eastern Airlines, recognized the intent of Congress was to protect men and women who are discriminated against for their gender.[4] They concluded that transsexuals were not protected under Title VII.   The courts seem to be changing their opinion in more recent cases. In Smith v. City of Salem, Barnes v. Cincinnati, and Glenn v. Brumby the court held that discrimination of transgender individuals can be protected under sex stereotyping provisions of Title VII.[5]

DSC01819The courts erred in the above cases for three basic reasons. 1) Homosexuality and transsexuality are wrong and harmful to those who practice them.   The Scriptural witness is clear on this. Genesis 1:27, Leviticus 18:22, 20:13, Deuteronomy 22:5, Romans 1:26-28, I Corinthians 6:8-9, I Timothy 1:8-11.

The CDC reports that while gay men constitute 7% of the male population, 78% of new HIV infections in 2010 occur in gay men.[6] This is a dangerous lifestyle that carries a real risk of a horrible, painful death.   This is not something that society should promote.

2) Homosexuality and transsexuality are mutable.   Dr. Paul McHugh, former psychiatrist-in-chief of John Hopkins Hospital, states that 70-80% of youth with transgender feelings grow out of those feelings without treatment.[7] I have two friends who were formerly gay transvestites. They both got saved and one is married with three children, the other is still looking for Mrs. Right. Good policy does not seek to affirm unhealthful, mutable lifestyles that contain an element of choice. Fairness would require that we then protect overeaters, drug addicts, alcoholics, and sexaholics.   They can make a better genetic case than homosexuals and transsexuals.

3) Protecting these behaviors undermines existing gender protections and religious freedom. If affirmative action is measured by how many employees feel like women, rather than how many biological women are actually employed, the entire policy is meaningless. If transgender males may use the women’s restroom at work, female employees freedom from sexual harassment and their right to privacy is violated. Every affirmation of homosexuality strikes at the heart of traditional marriage and therefore at gender roles. At base, these behaviors are incredibly disrespectful of women. Women have fought for recognition for a long time. It is not right to overturn their rights by making the self-destructive behavior of others a protected class.

Locust and Honey has teamed up with Catholic author, Michael Freze, to co-produce the second volume of the Voices, Visions, and Apparitions series which has just recently been released on Audible. We are looking forward to future collaborations with him including an upcoming book on the historical Jesus and the different gospel portraits of his person.

 

[1] Clyde E. Craig, Basic Labor and Employment Law for Paralegals 326 (2nd ed. 2012).

[2] Id. at 278.

[3] Velma Cheri Gay, 50 Years Later…Still Interpreting the Meaning of ‘Because of Sex’ in Title VII, 73 AFL Rev. 73 (2015).

[4] Id. at 75.

[5] Id. at 83-84.

[6] HIV Incidence, CDC (May 11, 2015), http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/statistics/surveillance/incidence.html.

[7] Michael W. Chapman, Johns Hopkins Psychiatrist: Transgender is ‘Mental Disorder;’ Sex Change ‘Biologically Impossible’, CNS.com (June 2, 2015), http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/michael-w-chapman/johns-hopkins-psychiatrist-transgender-mental-disorder-sex-change.

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