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Archive for Sunday, March 22, 2009

Sexual orientation measure put on hold

Thomas Witt, representing the Kansas Equality Coalition, and state Sen. Marci Francisco, D-Lawrence, greet each other before Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee vote on legislation that would prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The bill was approved 5-3. Francisco was a strong supporter for the measure.

Thomas Witt, representing the Kansas Equality Coalition, and state Sen. Marci Francisco, D-Lawrence, greet each other before Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee vote on legislation that would prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The bill was approved 5-3. Francisco was a strong supporter for the measure.

March 22, 2009

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— A key legislator has signaled that a bill prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation may not be considered by the full Senate this session.

And according to Thomas Witt, a lobbyist for the Kansas Equality Coalition, which has been pushing for the bill, that’s OK.

“We would always welcome debate, but if it doesn’t happen this year, it will be alive next year,” Witt said. “We’re taking the long view.”

Witt’s comments came after Senate Majority Leader Derek Schmidt, R-Independence, was asked whether he would bring up before the full Senate the bill, which had been approved last week by the Senate Federal and State Affairs Committee.

Schmidt said he didn’t know and that he wanted to speak with the committee chairman, Sen. Pete Brungardt, R-Salina, about it. “I’d just like to understand why a majority on the committee thought it needed to be debated this year,” Schmidt said.

The legislation would prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. It would amend the Kansas Act Against Discrimination, which protects Kansans from discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodations on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, disability, familiar status, national origin or ancestry.

The Federal and State Affairs Committee recommended approval of the bill on a 5-3 vote.

Twenty-six states offer some level of protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation, the KEC said.

Witt said the committee vote was “a big step in the right direction.” But, he added, it may take a little longer to get a majority in the Legislature to agree to the bill.

Comments

SettingTheRecordStraight 5 years, 9 months ago

We all agree that discrimination based upon sexual orientation is abhorrent. The thinking person also realizes that legislation like this is a backdoor, incremental approach to legitimizing gay "marriage."

Anyone see it differently?

SettingTheRecordStraight 5 years, 9 months ago

Defender and ed,

Because gay "marriage" is not real marriage, I would beg to differ.

SettingTheRecordStraight 5 years, 9 months ago

And defender, I can see you seething anger and inability to control yourself come through on your posts. I like your lack of discipline.

But have no fear, you'll one day be able to pull yourself together enough to almost effectively argue the positions of the Fringe Left. Keep practicing!

Sean Livingstone 5 years, 9 months ago

Like it or not, one-man-one-woman's definition of marriage is a recent Christian-imposed moral value. Jesus once said that if you believe in Christ, you will "marry" Jesus. The word in Hebrew actually translates into "marriage". If you're a man, you're marrying Jesus, what does that mean? Jesus never said that marriage belongs to only one-man-one-woman.

Whether marriage is accepted that way depends on the society. Thus we should impose similar moral value that we've imposed from the civil rights movement (discrimination against people of color). We cannot impose a moral value on another group of people, even if the majority of the people in this states are Christians. That is unconstitutional.

grammaddy 5 years, 9 months ago

"Gay marriage" is just as real to that couple as any other marriage is to the couple involved. As I've always said,"Gay marriage" has no effect on anyone else"s marriage. If you want to protect the institution of marriage... ban divorce.

grammaddy 5 years, 9 months ago

livingstone- great post! I really believe that "Gay marriage" is the next battle for civil rights.

ThomasWitt 5 years, 9 months ago

This isn't about marriage, it's about non-discrimination in employment and housing. To follow the "GAY MARRIAGE! GAY MARRIAGE!!" hysteria to its logical conclusion, it's like saying the current non-discrimination law that includes marital status will lead to incest and bigamy. It's an absolutely ridiculous argument. Those of you who push the notion that letting a gay or lesbian person keep their job or apartment will lead to marriage are either lying or ignorant.

Sean Livingstone 5 years, 9 months ago

edjayhawk, Liberty_One, grammadaddy,

I'm always surprised by how some people insist on their individual rights for owning a gun, but want to take the rights of others away from them. Guns kill more people than gays do. Guns bring down property values, but I'm little surprised that property values actually increase when gays move into your area. Since I support the right to the ownership of guns, I also support the right for gays to get married and be recognized. The biggest hurdle and challenge to a marriage, like what you all said are cheating and divorce, and not gay marriage. The biggest challenge and hurdle to gun crime is not gun ownership but gun control (spilling over the people who use gun for crimes). If you want your right to own a gun, that has direct impact on society, you should support the right for same-sex couples to get married.

dweezil222 5 years, 9 months ago

As much as the Christian right would like to pretend that marriage is a religious institution, the fact of the matter is that's simply not true. The concept of marriage developed as a measure of social/governmental control which provided for convenient measures of census-taking and record-keeping, served the goal of preventing the spread of disease, and contributed to overall order. The confusion arises because at the time of the development, religion and government were nearly (if not wholly) inseperable. But of course marriage in a modern American context is governmental, rather than truly/solely religious: If marriage were a solely religious institution, the government would have no right (and in fact, no ability) under our Constitution to require you to get a marriage license -- the separation of church and state would forbid it. Nor would governmental entities like justices of the peace have any reason to solemnize marriages. Because marriage is a governmental construct, rather than a religious one, equal protection is mandated by the Constitution, and clearly is not being met.

SettingTheRecordStraight 5 years, 9 months ago

Before the Far Left tried creating this "right" out of thin air in the late 20th century, homosexual "marriage" wasn't an issue in any country, in any culture, at any point in the known history of our planet.

Now, because of a clever but deceptive marketing campaign called the tolerance movement, our legislators are slowly changing our culture for the worse.

I'm just glad 35 out of 35 states have thus far protected traditional marriage through either law or constitutional amendment.

LiberalDude 5 years, 9 months ago

Sadly, this bill won't pass in Kansas for a long time. The Republicans like discrimination and they control Kansas politics.

SettingTheRecordStraight 5 years, 9 months ago

I'm so sorry, defender. You can be the "REAL conservative" today. Just promise to share and play nice. Maybe someone else can be the "REAL conservative" tomorrow?

And please let me know if you'd like any more verbal slapdowns. You're an easy target!

beatrice 5 years, 9 months ago

strs, you say discrimination is abhorrent, and you are correct, yet you appear to favor continuing discrimination because through discrimination we can assure that something you don't want to happen won't happen at some point, down the road, maybe -- is that it? Discrimination is abhorrent, yet necessary. Am I reading your comments correctly? We must limit people's rights in order to protect against the chance of granting these same people even greater rights. Is that right?

In my opinion, it seems a little too much about you, and not the people who are actually effected. What rights can we give to some but not to you?

kansanjayhawk 5 years, 9 months ago

This legislation is an abomination to our country it must be stopped. We need to remember the Christian values this nation was founded upon. Homosexual immorality is completely against those values and an attack on every family. Homosexuals need to repent and put their sin under the blood of Christ for His forgiveness. Only Christ Jesus can wash away this sin.

jasonc_22 5 years, 9 months ago

Lord...hate gays as much as you want, prevent them from getting married, that's fine...but you shouldn't be able to fire them for something that doesn't have anything to do with their job performance.

That, even more than everything else, is wrong.

Sean Livingstone 5 years, 9 months ago

"dweezil222 (Anonymous) says…

As much as the Christian right would like to pretend that marriage is a religious institution, the fact of the matter is that's simply not true. The concept of marriage developed as a measure of social/governmental ......"

Bravo comment! You're right! You can get married in Saudi Arabia, and your marriage is recognized here in the US. Yes, marriage certification is government issued, not a part of religion sect. So government determines what is right or wrong to be married. Government decides what should be taught in school, not our pastors. Great job!

LiberalDude 5 years, 9 months ago

This is part of the problem dweezil and livingstone- "Marriage" is both a U.S. legal term and a religious term. This is why I advocate for the U.S. government to change the legal term to "Civil Union". That way two people could have a civil union that has nothing to do with religion.

Sean Livingstone 5 years, 9 months ago

Liberal Dude,

Marriage is not a religious term, it's a legal term. You can get married in the Antartica, the marriage is valid as long as there's a government there to recognize the marriage. You can go to a religious institution to get married, but the government has to issue the document. You can pick and choose the religions you like to get married, but government has to recognize the marriage. So marriage has nothing to do with religion AT ALL. The reason why marriage becomes a religious term, thanks to the late Christianity who hijack the institution (for profit?). Even in Islamic countries, marriage is an institution of the government, not the religious... even though many ME countries blend both together. So why use the word civil union? Marriage is marriage. I don't think we want to create new words, just to hide away from the reality.

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