In a post directing readers to vote against the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, Fox News contributor Erick Erickson repeated the widely debunked talking point that non-discrimination protections for transgender people are somehow dangerous to women and children.
Enacted in early 2014, the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance (HERO) prohibits discrimination in areas like housing, employment, and city contracts on the basis of 15 characteristics, including race, sex, disability, religion, sexual orientation, and gender identity. On November 3, Houstonians will decide whether to keep the ordinance.
The fight over HERO has been plagued by the widely-debunked myth that HERO would allow sexual predators to sneak into women's restrooms by pretending to be transgender -- a bogus talking point championed by HERO's opponents. Experts across the country and officials from Texas cities with similar non-discrimination ordinances have thoroughly rejected the “bathroom predator” myth, calling it “beyond specious.”
Erickson parroted the “bathroom” talking point in a post on his radio show's website, claiming that HERO will “legitimately threaten your children.” In addition to describing transgender people as “the mentally ill, and the confused,” Erickson repeated the myth that LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination ordinances threaten “religious freedom.”
From a November 3 post on The Erick Erickson Show website:
Houston, TX voters will today go to the polls to decide a simple question: should men be able to use the women's bathroom?
The BLT&G community would have you believe the issue is more complicated than that, but that is it in a nutshell. Proposition 1 is being pushed by an aggressive lobby that is perfectly happy for deviants, criminals, liars, the mentally ill, and the confused to use a bathroom of the opposite sex if they can say, with a straight face, that they are the opposite sex.
This issue stems from an aggressive push by Houston's gay activist mayor who went so far as to threaten pastors with litigation if they dared mention the issue in the pulpit.
The Texas Values Coalition notes five things you need to know about Proposition 1:
- The ordinance will allow men access to women's bathrooms, shower rooms, and locker rooms (any “place of public accommodation”).
- The ordinance would force employers and private business owners to violate their religious and moral convictions.
- The ordinance promotes government-backed discrimination by seeking to criminalize opposition to homosexual and transgender behavior.
- The ordinance equates race with sexual conduct.
- The ordinance increases government interference in the private sector by mandating employment of homosexual and transgendered persons.
Proposition 1 is, essentially, legalized persecution of people of faith and their businesses. It will also legitimately threaten your children.
You need to vote no.
UPDATE: After HERO was defeated, Erickson doubled down on his transphobic rhetoric in a November 3 blog post on Red State:
Tonight, the people of Houston fought back and rejected the attempt to allow perverts, the mentally ill, liars, and others who want to get in to opposite sex bathrooms.
Christians and common sense won. Perverts, the mentally ill, and the gay rights mob lost.
It remains unscientific that men can be women and women can be men. But it has become an article of faith to the supposedly pro-science left -- an article of faith rejected by the people of Texas.