Awoke America

The Left, which now includes LGBTQ activists allied with BLM and the Democratic Party’s assurgent progressive wing, has embarked on a path to upturn all that is old and corrupt. This usually doesn’t end well. The American republic, built on a foundation of representative democracy and competing powers, fueled by freedom of speech treated as a sacred right, is less than 250 years old—a baby, still—and the fact that we assume it could not be toppled and replaced by a very different order is extremely naive.

‘Illiberal’ Liberals Embrace the Woke Left


Bari Weiss writes, in her resignation letter to the New York Times:

My own forays into Wrongthink have made me the subject of constant bullying by colleagues who disagree with my views. They have called me a Nazi and a racist; I have learned to brush off comments about how I’m “writing about the Jews again.” Several colleagues perceived to be friendly with me were badgered by coworkers. My work and my character are openly demeaned on company-wide Slack channels where masthead editors regularly weigh in. There, some coworkers insist I need to be rooted out if this company is to be a truly “inclusive” one, while others post ax emojis next to my name. Still other New York Times employees publicly smear me as a liar and a bigot on Twitter with no fear that harassing me will be met with appropriate action. They never are.

Historical Matters

As Pride Month draws to a close, the re-mything of Stonewall is ubiquitious. Some are trying to replace a false narrative with something more akin to the truth. As much as Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera are part of the story, rewriting their roles in an exercise of historical revisionism robs those who first rose up to fight back of their rightful place in history. But there are no statues, street names, children’s books or Google search page doodles for Marty Robinson and Morty Manford.

Historian Eric Marcus, writing in 1999:

The story of what really happened at Stonewall has yet to be distorted and embellished beyond the point of recognition, but it’s well on its way. The myth gets a boost every time someone writes about how “heroic drag queens started a riot at the Stonewall Inn, which marked the beginning of the gay rights movement.”

Now, of course, the gay-male drag queens have been transformed into transwomen. Gay guys, apparently, played only a secondary role in their own liberation, or so the narrative tells us.


Added, and recommended:


Hemingway adds:

If Johnson and Rivera are to have a statue, contextualizing it in relation to Stonewall is clearly wrong, and the rush to turn the pair into trans rights icons seems to be doing the exact opposite of what the New York Times suggested – it’s erasing a pivotal event for gay men by making the dominant narrative transgenderism.

Much has been said lately about the problems of wantonly tearing down statues to erase history, but the ideology behind erecting statues to invented historical narratives might be even more alarming.


Also:

Intersectional Pride 2020

This is now the future of “Pride”:

More, from the archives:

What’s Next?

Andrew Sullivan’s looks at what’s likely to following the achievement of all of the gay-rights movement’s original nondiscrimination goals.

There are political matters on which Sullivan and I disagree, but also many on which he is spot on. And in looking forward, it’s hard to disagree with what’s coming for LGBTQ+ activism. As Sullivan writes:

If current trends are any indication, [the Human Rights Campaign and similar groups] will simply merge into the broader intersectional left and become as concerned with, say, the rights of immigrants or racial minorities as they are with gay rights. In the political climate on the left at the moment, singling out gays as a separate category is increasingly impermissible.

More.


More still.

Off Narrative

Despite my reservations about judicial over-reach, the political response is certainly worth noting. This would be sure to drive the GOP-haters and the Trump-demonizers up the wall, if they bothered to consider it:

Reflections on the Ruling

Many progressive activists and their media allies, in cheering the Supreme Court’s ruling in Bostock v. Clayton County, suggest that the decision is great and good because ending anti-LGBT employment discrimination is great and good. There is an absence of qualms about the fact that the Supreme Court is not meant to be a super-legislature, overriding Congress when that body fails to do what’s right. Ultimately, that’s not a good thing for our nation.

As I noted previously, a ruling extending the Civil Rights Act to LGBT Americans is preferable to passing the awful Equality Act, which would gut the religious freedom protections in the bipartisan Religious Freedom Restoration Act, although the Fairness for All Act would strike a better balance. That said, I tend to agree with the dissents to the ruling.

While Justice Alito goes overboard in his hostility to the majority’s legal analysis, he is correct in his central point:

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination on any of five specified grounds: “race, color, religion, sex, [and] national origin.” 42 U. S. C. §2000e–2(a)(1). Neither “sexual orientation” nor “gender identity” appears on that list. For the past 45 years, bills have been introduced in Congress to add “sexual orientation” to the list, and in recent years, bills have included “gender identity” as well. But to date, none has passed both Houses.
Last year, the House of Representatives passed a bill that would amend Title VII by defining sex discrimination to include both “sexual orientation” and “gender identity,” H. R. 5, 116th Cong., 1st Sess. (2019), but the bill has stalled in the Senate. An alternative bill, H. R. 5331, 116th Cong., 1st Sess. (2019), would add similar prohibitions but contains provisions to protect religious liberty. This bill remains before a House Subcommittee.
Because no such amendment of Title VII has been enacted in accordance with the requirements in the Constitution (passage in both Houses and presentment to the President, Art. I, §7, cl. 2), Title VII’s prohibition of discrimination because of “sex” still means what it has always meant.

Justice Kavanaugh makes a similar argument but acknowledges some important realities:

The policy arguments for amending Title VII are very weighty. The Court has previously stated, and I fully agree, that gay and lesbian Americans “cannot be treated as social outcasts or as inferior in dignity and worth.” Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Comm’n, 584 U. S. ___, ___ (2018) (slip op., at 9).
But we are judges, not Members of Congress. And in Alexander Hamilton’s words, federal judges exercise “neither Force nor Will, but merely judgment.” The Federalist No. 78, p. 523 (J. Cooke ed. 1961). Under the Constitution’s separation of powers, our role as judges is to interpret and follow the law as written, regardless of whether we like the result. Cf. Texas v. Johnson, 491 U. S. 397, 420–421 (1989) (Kennedy, J., concurring). Our role is not to make or amend the law. …
Notwithstanding my concern about the Court’s transgression of the Constitution’s separation of powers, it is appropriate to acknowledge the important victory achieved today by gay and lesbian Americans. Millions of gay and lesbian Americans have worked hard for many decades to achieve equal treatment in fact and in law. They have exhibited extraordinary vision, tenacity, and grit—battling often steep odds in the legislative and judicial arenas, not to mention in their daily lives. They have advanced powerful policy arguments and can take pride in today’s result. Under the Constitution’s separation of powers, however, I believe that it was Congress’s role, not this Court’s, to amend Title VII. I therefore must respectfully dissent from the Court’s judgement.

Walter Olson noted in his commentary:

As a policy matter, extending anti‐discrimination law further into private employment decisions invades further the realm of private choice and individual liberty. As Alito notes in his dissent, it is especially hazardous to do so without the sort of conscious legislative back‐and‐forth that might result in the negotiation of thresholds and exemptions so as to handle controversial or burdensome cases. In the longer run, when Congress revisits this area in legislation, it will have a chance to rethink these points.

However, when “Congress revisits this area” it is likely to be with Democratic Party majorities that will remove any “thresholds and exemptions” that acknowledge historic rights of religious dissent from the majority.

The Supreme Court Rules


I have said that a ruling extending the Civil Rights Act to LGBT Americans would be far preferable to passing the awful Equality Act, which would gut the religious freedom protections in the bipartisan Religious Freedom Restoration Act. However, the Fairness for All Act would strike a better balance.

Worth repeating:

Conflicting Rights



From the Log Cabin Republicans’ fact sheet on the HHS Obamacare Revisions:

“The Government can’t force doctors to perform procedures that they are medically, professionally or morally opposed to performing. Remember, this is a ruling on the type of procedures, not the type of patients.”

Also from the LCR fact sheet:

So was anything “rolled back?” No – you can’t ‘roll back’ something that was never actually implemented.

So this isn’t LGB, just T(ransgender)? Yes, just gender identity.

So do medical care providers now have license to discriminate against transgender individuals for things like cancer, a broken arm or the common cold? The latitude now allowed is not in the patient – it’s in the course of treatment.

Update: Following the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Boystock v. Clayton County, it’s likely the revised rule will fall. That will make activists happy but means continued conflict with faith-based healthcare providers who the state will require to perform gender-reassignment procedures that violate deeply held faith convictions. As Justice Alito wrote in his dissent:

Healthcare benefits may emerge as an intense battleground under the Court’s holding. Transgender employees have brought suit under Title VII to challenge employer-provided health insurance plans that do not cover costly sex reassignment surgery. Similar claims have been brought under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which broadly prohibits sex discrimination in the provision of healthcare.
Such claims present difficult religious liberty issues because some employers and healthcare providers have strong religious objections to sex reassignment procedures, and therefore requiring them to pay for or to perform these procedures will have a severe impact on their ability to honor their deeply held religious beliefs.

To the secular left, that is of no consequence, but it should be to those who value the liberties historically protected by the U.S. Constitution.