The left is upset. And who can blame them? Losing elections isn’t fun. But sometimes when we become emotional, we become irrational. And that seems to be happening a little bit too.
One recent example is an article in Salon lamenting the fact that the business community will no longer be able to “stop Trump from repealing LGBT rights.“
The first problem with this article is fairly obvious. Donald Trump is not exactly James Dobson.
In fact, his apparent support for the LGBT community is one of the reasons many conservatives struggled to support him in the first place and part of the reason some never did.
He has never said anything close to critical of same-sex “marriage”.
Peter Thiel, one of his wealthiest and most prominent supporters, gave a convention speech in support of Trump at the request of Trump. He identifies as gay.
So what LGBT rights are they concerned about losing?
The article focuses its concern on a piece of federal legislation called the First Amendment Defense Act (FADA) which prohibits the government from discriminating against individuals and businesses because of their beliefs about marriage.
They’re terrified that a bill created to eliminate discrimination based on beliefs is an assault on their rights.
Which rights? The right to discriminate against people because of their beliefs?
When the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held a hearing on FADA, key testimony was provided by Kelvin Cochran, the former Atlanta fire chief who was fired from his job because of his beliefs about marriage.
He had never been accused of treating someone in a discriminatory fashion or creating a hostile work environment. He was fired because the mayor of Atlanta concluded that someone with Chief Cochran’s beliefs are incompatible with the job of managing a diverse workforce.
His story illustrated the problem the bill was trying to address: people should not be fired because of what they believe.
It also clarifies that businesses and nonprofits cannot be denied the opportunity to compete in the marketplace on equal footing with other businesses because of their beliefs.
In reality, FADA simply restates what the First Amendment was always understood to mean prior to the Obama Administration’s attempt to claim it protects only what happens between your ears.
FADA doesn’t repeal same-sex “marriage” laws.
It doesn’t relegate people who identify as gay to the back of buses.
They’re afraid of losing their leverage to bully people.
The article celebrates the many times the left has employed economic terrorism to coerce political outcomes they prefer. They fear a Trump administration, in which diversity of opinion is promoted nationwide, will hamper their ability to target an individual businessman or company.
“What are we going to do?” the article seems to ask. “Boycott the entire country?”
Let’s remember what they’ve boycotted in the first place.
They’ve boycotted the idea that a school in North Carolina would have the freedom to ensure that girls will never be asked to undress with boys.
They’ve boycotted the idea that a business owner in Indiana would be free to choose which events or messages they support or communicate through their business.
The LGBT community can decline to do business with people who disagree with them. Some would just prefer not to extend that same liberty to others.
Recall where things stood on these issues only eight years ago.
When President Obama ran for President in 2008, he publicly opposed same-sex “marriage”.
Most states didn’t even have domestic partnerships or civil unions and only Massachusetts recognized same-sex “marriages.”
The same election that sent President Obama to the White House also saw California passed Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment defining marriage as a relationship between a man and a woman.
A lot has happened since then.
So much, in fact, that some on the left apparently feel it is an imposition on their rights not to be able to fire someone for holding the same position about marriage that President Obama held when he was first elected.
But here’s the deal.
None of us has the right to destroy the lives of people we disagree with.
Nor do we have a right to force people to be part of our events or causes.
It is not the job of government to protect me from people who disagree with me, but it is the job of government to protect everyone from those who would use the power of government to punish people they dislike.
If you’re one who feels that something like FADA would be an assault on your rights, you have simply developed a perverse concept of rights.
There has never been the right to witch hunt and hopefully there never will be. Love or hate the President-elect, that’s something we should all be able to agree on.