New version of gay-rights ordinance likely headed back to Kalamazoo City Commission
KALAMAZOO -- Six months after Kalamazoo's first anti-discrimination ordinance was rescinded in the face of a petition challenge, supporters and opponents of gay-rights guarantees appear no closer to finding common ground.What concessions did the 'gay rights' lobby object to?
A three-member Kalamazoo City Commission subcommittee is expected to introduce a new version of the employment, housing and public-accommodation ordinance at the commission's next meeting June 15.
But opponents -- many who object to gay-rights protections on religious grounds -- said Wednesday they're prepared to immediately launch another petition drive to let city voters have the final word on the issue.
Mayor Bobby Hopewell appointed Commissioners David Anderson, Don Cooney and Stephanie Moore in December to hear arguments on both side of the issue and try to craft a new anti-discrimination ordinance that addressed those concerns.
But following hours of public comment and opportunities to weigh in on the proposal via e-mail, letters and telephone, Wednesday's final subcommittee meeting ended with a widening gap.
The ordinance essentially would make it a city infraction to discriminate in employment, housing or public accommodations based on an individual's sexual orientation.
City Attorney Clyde Robinson presented a modified form of the 11-page ordinance draft Wednesday that included some concessions on issues raised by opponents. However, several of those accommodations were removed by the subcommittee after representatives from the gay, lesbian and transgender community objected and offered alternatives.
"Taken in totality, the proposed changes gut the intention of the amendment and would dramatically reduce the ability of the ordinance to remedy and prohibit discrimination in the city of Kalamazoo," said Amy Hunter, a transgender individual who spoke on behalf of the gay-rights Kalamazoo Alliance for Equality.
Specifically, Robinson had proposed applying the ordinance to businesses employing 15 or more persons. But Commissioner Don Cooney agreed with KAFE's position that the ban on employment discrimination should be applied to all businesses.'Youth organizations' includes the Boy Scouts. The 'gay rights' lobby would ban their existence.
The subcommittee also deleted language that would have allowed youth organizations to "restrict membership on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity."
A provision that would have allowed restricting "use of lavatories, restrooms, changing rooms or locker rooms or shower facilities on the basis of sex" was also eliminated. The subcommittee will recommend that no one be required to provide unisex facilities, however.Yes, they really do want to mandate that men pretending to be women can use women's bathrooms.
The final draft does include an exemption for religious organizations, including religious-based schools. Under that provision, religious organizations would be allowed to restrict housing, employment and access to services like homeless shelters to "members who conform to the moral tenets of that religious organization."How generous.
For example, the Kalamazoo Gospel Mission, a faith-based homeless shelter, would not be bound by the ordinance if housing gay, lesbian or transgender individuals meant violating its "religious tenets."
"We know there are Biblical and philosophical differences," said Terry Kuseske, of KAFE. "We want to keep the Bible out of this and have separation of church and state."Jan Stowe and Lydia McGrew said Wednesday they're ready to begin collecting petition signatures if the current draft is adopted by the commission.There you have it. The 'gay rights' movement attacks religious businesses, the Boy Scouts, and even separate bathrooms.
"There are legitimate moral objections and this has been an attempt to override those objections," McGrew said. "This ordinance, at its heart, doesn't seem to me to be all that different."
The subcommittee now is tentatively scheduled to introduce the new draft ordinance for first reading June 15. If it has the votes, it could be enacted as early as the commission's next session June 29 and go into effect 10 days later.
If a petition challenge is mounted, circulators will have 20 days from the date the ordinance becomes effective to collect and submit nearly 1,300 signatures to bring the measure back before the commission.
At that point, the commission would decide to either rescind the ordinance in its entirety or put its provisions on hold until city voters decide if it should continue. That election could come as early as November.
The 'gay rights' movement is truly hate-based. They hate Christians, conservatives, the Boy Scouts, the free market, and anyone who disagrees with them. No movement has been more vicious about attacking people who disagree with them, Miss California being a prominent example.
It's time to expose their lies.
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