Trump signs order creating loophole for anti-LGBT discrimination

From The Dallas Voice:

by Tammye Nash
March 28, 2017

President Trump on Monday, March 27, signed what Lambda Legal calls a “very disturbing” order giving federal contractors a large loophole through which to discriminate against LGBT people.

The White House released a copy of the executive order, signed by Trump, on Monday afternoon. The order revokes all or part of three previous executive orders concerning federal contracting.

Of greatest concern to LGBT people, Trump’s executive order revoked President Obama’s 2014 Executive Order 13673, the Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces order, that required that companies receiving large federal contracts be able to demonstrate that they have complied for at least three years with 14 federal laws, several of which prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender stereotyping or gender identity.

By taking away the requirement that federal contractors be able to demonstrate that they have not violated these federal laws, according to Lambda Legal Senior Counsel Camilla Taylor, “this administration has made it extremely difficult to enforce these federal laws as applied to federal contractors.”

“It’s sending a message to these companies…that the federal government simply doesn’t care whether or not they violate the law,” Taylor said.

Among those 14 laws implicated are Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, and the Family and Medical Leave Act.

Title VII prohibits discrimination based on sex in employment. Under the Obama administration, the Department of Justice and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission argued that discrimination based on “sex” included discrimination based on sexual orientation.

The ADA and Rehabilitation Act prohibit discrimination based on HIV infection and other disabilities. And the Family and Medical Leave Act, under the Obama Department of Labor, was held to include employees caring for a same-sex spouse, even if the employee lived in a state that did not recognize marriage of same-sex couples.

The 14 affected federal laws and regulations affected by the new Trump executive order also includes Executive Order 11246, signed in 1965 by President Johnson, which prohibited federal contractors from discriminating in employment based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin. Four years later, President Nixon added discrimination based on disability and age.

Complete article at:

Posted in Uncategorized. Comments Off on Trump signs order creating loophole for anti-LGBT discrimination

Attack in Jackson Heights Leaves Two Transgender Women Living in Fear

From The New York Times:

April 2, 2017

Nayra and Gabriela don’t go out much these days, and not just because the two roommates are homebodies. When they venture outside their apartment in Queens, their hesitation is caused as much by emotional wounds as by physical injuries. The two friends are trans women, and though their Jackson Heights neighborhood has a reputation as a welcoming community for gays and lesbians, hate crimes against transgender women have alarmed many in the area.

On the afternoon of March 17, the two women were entering a McDonald’s restaurant on Roosevelt Avenue when they heard a man screaming behind them. When they turned around, they said, he began hurling insults.

“He called us prostitutes, faggots, bitches,” said Gabriela, 33, who, like her friend, spoke on the condition that her last name not be published because of the nature of the assault as well as lingering fear. “I looked at him and said, ‘Girl, this man is crazy.’ He wanted to hurt us.”

Within seconds, the encounter escalated from insults to injuries. The man rushed them, knocking them to the ground as he pummeled Nayra, whose ankle was fractured in the fall. Gabriella said that she had pounced on him but that he had gotten up, grabbed a broken umbrella and used it to beat her on her face and hands.

When he tried to escape, Gabriella chased him, grabbing at the waistband of his pants and slowing him down until the police arrived and took him into custody. No bystanders intervened during the attack, they said.

Now, what has been called a hate crime by the police has turned a neighborhood they love into one they fear.

“I can’t go out and see too many people,” Nayra, 31, said. “If I have appointments, I’ll take a taxi and come back home. I don’t want to see anybody. If I do, I freeze. If I go outside to smoke and I hear a man’s voice, I panic.”

Patrick Omeara, 38, of Oakdale, N.Y., was arrested and faces various charges, including assault as a hate crime. He could not be reached for comment. His lawyer, Howard Turman, did not respond to several voice messages requesting comment. The case is in the pretrial stage, and the next court date is scheduled for Tuesday.

Continue reading at:

Posted in Uncategorized. Comments Off on Attack in Jackson Heights Leaves Two Transgender Women Living in Fear

Sebastian Gorka Calls Forward Expose ‘Hatchet Job’ — But Won’t Condemn Nazi Allies

From The Forward:

By Dave Goldiner
April 2, 2017

Sebastian Gorka, the controversial White House aide accused of vowing allegiance to a Nazi-allied group in Hungary, lashed out Sunday at revelations in a Forward expose about his far right wing ties as a “hatchet job.”

“First I am an Islamophobe, then I’m an anti-Semite, then I am a fascist,” Gorka told The Telegraph, listing three allegations the Forward did not make. “Next I am going to be a Martian.”

“It’s disgusting. It’s all bogus,” Gorka added to the paper. “This is a hatchet job.”

Gorka, whose parents are Hungarian, spent several years working with far right wing politics there. He is accused of being a sworn member of the Vitézi Rend, a Hungarian organisation that the U.S. government designated as “under Nazi control” during World War II.

Three top officials of the group told the Forward that Gorka was a sworn member. He also wore the group’s medal that it awarded to his father and often used the ‘v’ that is symbolic of the group in titles.

Gorka denies being an official member of the group and calls the stories part of a conspiracy to bring down President Trump.

Yet he refuses to condemn the far right Hungarian regime that collaborated with the Nazis or the organizations that supported it.


Posted in Uncategorized. Comments Off on Sebastian Gorka Calls Forward Expose ‘Hatchet Job’ — But Won’t Condemn Nazi Allies