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Last week the newspapers were full of high-sounding stories about the Senate’s gay rights bill. They reported the Senate’s:

– Completing the civil rights crusade started fifty years ago.

– Letting the bells of freedom ring.

– Advancing tolerance.

– Barring discrimination.
One Illinois Democrat intoned how happy he was the Senate’s ‘fulfilling Abraham Lincoln’s life’s work.’
Now as an aging white Southern male I’ve just naturally gotten sort of comfortable with the old ways which, I will concede, are rapidly passing as we march, not toward equality, but toward enlightened benightment for everyone from Wiccans to Whiffenpoofs.
Now, of course, my daughter would say tartly, Dad, what you’ve really gotten comfortable with is your old fogey ways. And that may be true. But I mean no harm. And when I read that Senate bill I just naturally thought,  So now the politicians are going to tell some poor fellow who doesn’t want to hire a transgender he’s got to or else.
And to that my daughter would say: Okay. I’ll concede hiring someone who is transgender is a big leap for you. But what about someone who is gay?
Now, to be candid, my first reaction would be to say, I wouldn’t want some Washington hotshot putting a gun to my head and saying I have to hire a gay person either. But then, on second thought, I’ve already crossed that bridge.
Because there’s a gay gentleman I’ve been working with in campaigns going back thirty-eight years and I’m still working with him, which establishes there are exceptions to my bias – which allows me to say with a small claim to open-mindedness that when bunch of vote-pandering Senators tell me I’ve got to hire someone transgender because transgenderism is glorious and wonderful and fulfills the dream of Abraham Lincoln’s lifetime – that’s pure bunk.



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One comment on “Old Fogey Ways

  1. Chris says:

    And, Carter, your experience demonstrates why a federal bill isn’t needed. Where’s the evidence that gay people are routinely being fired or harassed because of their sexual orientation? In fact, most straight folks’ experience with gay folks is that it just isn’t that big of a deal.

    On the other hand, the risk of a federal lawsuit could easily lead employers to fire a better-performing straight employee instead of a worse-performing gay one. And that’s a lousy incentive to create.

    Federal restrictions on discrimination by race made sense — the country had a long history, rooted in slavery, of discrimination based on skin color. But, the current experience of gay Americans today is nowhere near the experience of black Americans in the 60’s.

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