There’s a storm brewing in Texas that’s threatening our very LGBT foundation. At the epicenter is the city of Plano’s amended human rights ordinance.
There’s a lot of smoke surrounding this issue so it’s important to clear the air.
There’re a few things I’m fairly certain of living just outside of Plano (in Texas miles).
- Plano revised its human rights ordinance at the request of Toyota to include their employees
- Plano was in contact with two gay and lesbian advocacy groups asking for input.
- All Texas transgender groups have said they were purposely excluded from the drafting of the ordinance.
- The ordinance fails to satisfy Toyota’s request as it codifies exclusion of trans people from public accommodations.
- HRC opposes Plano’s ordinance for the same reasons most trans people do because it is transgender exclusive and creates unsafe environments.
- Despite the vast majority of trans people opposing the ordinance TENT (Transgender Education Network Texas) supports it.
- Tent’s position although intrinsically flawed is not without merit.
Tent issued a position Statement which acknowledges that the ordinance does not offer sufficient protections in public accommodations but asks trans people to support it because it would give TENT an opportunity to ‘fix it’ in the future.
Therein lies the problem. TENT isn’t going to ride in on their white stallion, should the ordinance withstand a public vote, and make everything all right. The reality is TENT is willing to stand by their partner gay and lesbian groups for political expediency at the expense of the trans community.
The Texas Trans Pride Iniaitive issued a position paper:
There will be a public showdown when the ordinance makes it onto Plano’s council agenda, but you won’t know who the players are playing for without a scorecard
Supporting the ordinance:
Equality Texas is supporting the ordinance.
TENT supports it.
Transgender Texans represented by the Trans initiative are opposed to the ordinance.
HRC is against it.
Assorted Rightwing groups oppose it simply because it has the word ‘transgender’ included in it. They really couldn’t care less if it’s good or bad, just that it is trans-inclusive in any way. (idiots should be working to support it).
Disclaimer: The author was a member of TENT before it lost its advocacy mandate while it was still called TACT. She quit the group after they said they wanted to expand to the DFW but turned down her offers to help with that. She felt at the time that the new leadership was more concerned with controlling the message than actually working in the best interests of the whole community.