Sunday, October 25, 2009

Documenting unreportable discrimination | Bilerico

Bilerico's Amy Hunter makes a fantastic point about why the Police can't tell us about specific instances of discrimination against transgender and gay/lesbian people in Kalamazoo:
"The problem is that without a law there is no recognized mechanism for reporting and documentation of discrimination. How very convenient.... It's the same 'Catch 22' that gay and transgender people have been in with respect to violent crimes committed against them for no other reason than they are gay or transgender. Fortunately, it appears this situation will be changing soon. Once President Obama signs the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act into law, it will become a federal hate crime to commit an act of violence against a person because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

In Kalamazoo, the Kalamazoo Gay and Lesbian Resource Center (KGLRC) logs telephone calls and contacts that come to them about discrimination or violence, their logs however are not considered official. If you call the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety, they might take your complaint but will not reference your sexual orientation or gender identity in the official report. The same is true for the City of Kalamazoo.

The sad, nearly incomprehensible truth is that without specific protections it is actually legal to discriminate against someone based merely on perceived sexual orientation or gender identity."

That's why we have to fight HARD and give all we can to try to stop this anti-gay onslaught. A loss in Kalamazoo would be a loss for ALL of America. I hope you're ready to give to help out One Kalamazoo:
"One Kalamazoo is the campaign formed to educate voters about voting YES on the Kalamazoo Non-Discrimination Ordinance to treat all people with fairness and equality--including gay and transgender people. As a ballot question committee, One Kalamazoo will encourage voters to vote YES on the ordinance during the November 3, 2009 elections."

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