SLAP: Louisiana anti-bullying measure fails
Queer-rights activists faced a disappointing loss in Louisiana where they tried to pass a more comprehensive anti-bullying measure. Rep. Pat Smith, a Democrat from Baton Rouge, argued the bill was necessary and cited evidence of students facing increasing bullying in public schools. However, the Louisiana Family Forum and aides to Gov. Bobby Jindal argued the bill went too far and shouldn’t list sexual orientation or gender identity as a reason to protect against bullying. A Republican committee removed all real references and influence of the bill, so it was tabled by supporters.
SNAP: Social issues downscaled
While some previous elections, particularly the 2004 presidential race, had focused on social issues such as gay marriage, that’s not the case this year. A new survey from the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press found that gay marriage is the least of voters’ worries this election season and only 28 percent of respondents said that marriage equality is a “very important” electoral issue for them. This is in comparison to other issues that topped the list, such as the economy and job markets, which 84 percent of respondents said were very important issues.
SLAP: Boehner says there’s ample protection
Saying he was unaware of the existence of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, Republican House Speaker John Boehner said gays are already protected enough. “Having been the chairman of the Education & Workforce Committee, I’m quite familiar with employment law. But if there are further changes that are necessary, I’m sure the committee will look at it,” he said. Both local and national polls indicate an enormous support for anti-bias measures protecting against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.