Full universal rights for LGBTQ people
Conservatism and today’s right-wing for the most part, especially so under Trump, are built specifically on ignorance and fear. It goes like this – unless you look like me, earn like me, worship like me and sleep with people that I sleep with
(allegedly), then I regard you with, at best, suspicion, at worst bigotry and fear.
So it is that civil rights and women’s rights have all been exposed to the full vigor of such conservative niceties for decades now. And as if that wasn’t enough hatred and irrationality to go around, now you can add the all-out war against the
LGBTQ peoples of the US to the list of seething resentments held by the right-wing. And under Trump, things have only gotten worse since 2016.
Of course, the Great Electoral Fraud that is Donald J. Trump made noises during his electoral campaign as to be being allegedly “LGBTQ friendly.” And like so much that emerges from Trump’s mouth, that proved to be absolute garbage.
Trump has appointed a notoriously anti-LGBTQ Mike Pence as vice-President;embraced a virulently homophobic evangelical demographic for nothing more than cynical electoral advantage; stuffed his Cabinet with prominent anti-LGBTQ names (such as Pompeo, Perry and DeVos, for just a few rancid examples);banned trans-gender people from serving their country in the armed forces; and allowed the federal government to turn a blind eye to homophobic actions (such as doctors refusing to treat patients) on the basis of “religious liberty.”
Yet again, while the rest of the Western world continues to march firmly in the direction of ever more affirmation of equality for all members of society, the US conspicuously marches in the diametrically opposite direction. It is bizarre as to
just how the right-wing prides itself on “individual liberty” when it comes to buying and selling, yet when it comes to things like gender, race and sexual orientation / identity, it completely tramples over its pretense as to being concerned about freedom. The hollow claim that they respect all life, as long as it’s the sort of life that they would identify with on a census form or at their local church, is pure hate-based hypocrisy.
Just as it is with the death penalty, when it comes to LGBTQ rights, the US finds itself rubbing shoulders with some very dubious comparators. There are any number of brutal regimes in the Middle East, Asia and Africa that are openly
hostile to the LGBTQ community. While the US may not yet be at that level of open discrimination, it’s certainly on the same path. Such is the way of fascism and bigotry – it often-times starts with small steps that, over time, people
become immune to and so the subsequent steps become bigger and bigger until full-blown discrimination becomes the norm.
Sadly, there is growing evidence of this to be found in the public at large. In recent years, since Trump has come to power, the number of Americans that believe the LGBTQ community faces discrimination has actually fallen. “Only 55 percent of Americans believe that gay and lesbian people face a lot of discrimination in the US, down from 68 percent in 2013.”
Indifference is so often the gateway to full-blown bigotry and discrimination. The mind-set of “it’s not my problem” individually is inevitably always society’s problem. Never has “if you’re not part of the solution then you’re part of the
problem” been so apt as it is now with the challenges facing full LGBTQ rights in the US.
Conservatives view human rights as they do a buffet – they pick and chose as they see fit. LGBTQ rights, like civil rights, women’s rights and worker’s rights, are non-negotiable. It is then long past time, way past time, for every LGBTQ person in
the US to be afforded equal rights. The acceptance of full LGBTQ rights is one of the hall-marks of any civilised, advanced Western democracy and the US now needs to step up to the plate.
So it is then that any 2020 Presidential candidate that claims to be genuinely progressive should unequivocally confirm their belief in full LGBTQ rights and categorically denounce homophobia in all its dark manifestations.