A bill proposed in the Georgia House of Representatives would make it illegal for public employers, such as schools, universities and state government itself, to discriminate against Georgians on the basis of their sexual orientation or identity.
At this point in history, you might think that protecting school teachers and others from being fired solely because of their sexual orientation would be pretty uncontroversial. In fact, the legislator who sponsored the bill, state Rep. Karla Drenner of Avondale Estates, is herself gay. In a subcommittee hearing this week, every witness but one testified in favor of House Bill 630.
The sole exception was Tanya Ditty, a teacher and state director of the conservative and anti-gay Concerned Women of America, which claims 12,000 members in Georgia. Among other things, the group also campaigns against the imposition of Sharia law, which it describes as “a threat to America as we know it.”
Here is an excerpt from Ditty’s testimony.
For those unable to view the video, Ditty warns that the legislation would force public schools to hire and employ people who engage in beastiality, necrophilia and other -ialities and -philias too horrible to mention. She also expresses concern about restroom policy, recounting a searing incident five years ago in which she believes she shared a restroom with a man dressed as a woman, but didn’t discover it until afterward.
The good news is, she survived.
“What’s going to protect our children if a pedophiliac comes in and gets a teaching job, is a bus driver, is a custodian?” Ditty asked legislators. “And they can be people who just want to prey on children, and they will be protected with this law.”
For the record, child sexual abuse is a vicious crime. It is a felony in this state. Anyone with a record of pedophilia is not only barred by Georgia law from teaching in a school or serving as a bus driver; such a person is banned from living or working in any job within 1,000 feet of a school or even a school bus stop. Nothing about HB 630 would have changed that. The legislation does not protect criminals or sexual predators.
Nonetheless, the House subcommittee voted 3-2, with the Republican majority carrying the day, to kill the bill and to continue to deny gay and lesbian Georgians the right to be employed by the same government to which they pay taxes and by which they are governed.
However, I wonder if they realize that by doing so, they themselves have ensured that Georgia law remains in compliance with Sharia law, which like Ditty and others condemns gays for “transgressing the limits.”
NOTE: Please keep personal comments about Ditty and others within the bounds of civil discussion.
– Jay Bookman