Posted on April 9, 2009. Filed under: News And Politics... |

Who says your vote doesn’t count?  Look at a bill that was just passed by the New Hampshire House.  Last month, this bill was rejected by 30 votes (181-149), but it has reversed itself and the bill was passed extending anti-discrimination protections to transgender individuals by a single vote after a passionate appeal from House Speaker Terie Norelli to include transgender individuals in the state’s anti-discrimination law.  The House debated more than three hours before voting 188-187 to send it to the Senate.  This is yet another bill that hasn’t been too well thought out and once this goes into effect, you will find many problems stemming from this move.  If this bill ever hits Massachusetts, we’ll be in big trouble as this is low priority compared to the many issues that Massachusetts is up against right now.  Of course, we’re talking about Devil (or Deval, as he is known) Patrick, our clueless blunder of a governor and avid Obama imitator.  Like Obama, he doesn’t think things through, either, before he makes a move so I am leery of how he will handle this issue.
This may be a major coup for the transgendered population, which I’m sure is a small number compared to the population as a whole, but it will create havoc to those of us who have to comply with this sketchy law.  The ladies’ rooms have long lines as it is so they may find the non-existent lines for the mens’ room a better option.  My main concern is that we (females) may find guys using the ladies room under the pretense that they are "transgendered".  This is opening the [ladies room] door to perverts and those guys who want to buck the system.  Just watch and see.  I can’t believe that New Hampshire tackled this issue while many more important issues were filed away.  If they are so gung-ho about transgendered issues, why are they not jumping on the bandwagon in support of gays and lesbians over the marriage issue?  This will snowball, and you’ll see other groups coming forward demanding equal rights as well.  It’s just human nature.  I’m wondering if the transgenders will demand their own bathrooms (which will cost taxpayers lots of money) or will we just have to squat to their demands of using the ladies room.  Why can’t these idiotic politicians grow a pair and push this bill:  "If you have a penis, use the mens’ room; if you have a vagina, use the ladies’ room."  This, of course, would just make too much sense to them…

Transgender rights bill passes in NH House; Mass. next?

CONCORD, N.H. — The New Hampshire House reversed itself Wednesday and passed a bill extending anti-discrimination protections to transgender individuals by a single vote.

The House voted 181-149 last month to kill the bill but reconsidered Wednesday after a passionate appeal from House Speaker Terie Norelli to include transgender individuals in the state’s anti-discrimination law.

The House debated more than three hours before voting 188-187 to send it to the Senate.

Republicans call it the "bathroom bill" based on the argument it would open all bathrooms to both men and women. Republicans said women and children would be put at risk if men came into the women’s bathroom. They also complained the bill did not adequately define transgender individuals.

"This seeks to elevate a nebulous group to the sacred level we find in racial discrimination," said Mont Vernon Republican William O’Brien. "This bill is not needed. It’s dangerous."

Republicans tried to dilute the bill with 13 amendments ranging from giving employers the ability to set the length of job applicants’ hair to exempting nursing home beds. All failed by wide margins.

Supporters — almost entirely Democrats — said those tactics attempted to paint a straightforward anti-discrimination bill as something it wasn’t. They said it would protect a vulnerable group who identify with the gender opposite of their birth. They said it would protect them from discrimination by employers, landlords and others.

"We’re not asking you to open bathrooms to sexual predators. We’re asking you to stand tall against discrimination," said Norelli, a Portsmouth Democrat.

Harts Location Democrat Ed Butler, a bill sponsor, argued that transgender individuals aren’t covered by the state’s anti-discrimination law and need protections.

"The reason for withholding these protections from transgenders is what? Fear?" Butler said. "Transgenders are not a threat to our society or our way of life. They are not sick. They are simply different."

Colin Manning, spokesman for Gov. John Lynch, said New Hampshire has a comprehensive anti-discrimination statute already.

"We are not convinced that the concerns raised by the supporters of this legislation aren’t already covered under existing law," said Manning.

Massachusetts is considering a similar bill. In Connecticut, a bill to protect transgender people from discrimination died in a legislative committee last week, but activists and some lawmakers hope to add it to another bill.

Thirteen states, the District of Columbia and 93 cities and counties have laws banning discrimination on transgender status according to the Transgender Law Policy Institute.



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