Oskaloosa.com

Letters to the Editor

May 11, 2007

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Writers applaud state lawmakers on vote for ‘gay civil rights’ bill

Letter to the editor:

A recent letter to the editor admonished both Eric Palmer and Tom Rielly for voting for the “gay civil rights bill” (SF 427). The author stated that she hoped their constituents were aware of their actions. She went on to say that the bill was an assault on Christian values as well as unfriendly to Iowa families, business, and faith-based organizations.

As constituents we are aware of their actions and we applaud them. Discrimination in any form should not be tolerated in our state. This law makes it illegal for someone to be discriminated against for employment, housing, or lending simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The bill adds sexual orientation and gender identity to the current classes protected against discrimination which include race, gender, religion, familial status, national origin, and disability.

It is unfortunate that we need any kind of laws to protect human beings from discrimination. All people are deserving of the same rights and privileges. However, the reality is that some individuals feel threatened or uncomfortable with select classes of people and react by limiting contact with them. This law outlines specific situations where that is illegal. Faith-based organizations, families, and businesses should be at the forefront of fighting attempts to discriminate against individuals rather than feeling assaulted by such actions.

Legislators such as Eric Palmer and Tom Rielly are doing the right thing when they stand up and say that Iowa will not tolerate discrimination. We support them whole-heartedly.

Chad and Janet Farner

Oskaloosa

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