The Houston Equal Rights Ordinance Essay

The Houston Equal Rights Ordinance Essay

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Thomas Jefferson once said in a speech, “Equal rights for all, special privileges for none” (Equal Rights). This saying states the importance of protecting each individual’s equal rights, but not allowing special privileges to a certain individual or class. HERO is the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance that “prohibits discrimination on the basis of protected characteristics in city employment, city services, city contracting practices, housing, public accommodations, and private employment...” (City of Houston). The Houston Equal Rights Ordinance should not pass in this city because it allows the Mayor, Annise Parker, to abuse her power in office, admit transgender men and women to enter the opposite gender restroom, and the rights the ordinance is claiming to protect is already protected by federal and state laws.
The passing of HERO would express that Houstonians are content with the mayor abusing her power in office. Annise Parker, our openly lesbian mayor, is serving her final term this year in Houston. She has made it her goal to establish an ordinance in Houston that prohibits discrimination against 15 categories that particularly includes gender identity, sexual orientation, and gender orientation. Annise Parker’s active agenda is “pushing the city ordinance to protect gay rights, which [consequently] has landed the city in a court battle that attracted national attention” (Thompson). “I 've been a lesbian activist for 40 years. And it 's hard to break a habit... I have been saying for 40 years [that] there is no such thing as a gay agenda. But I 'm here to tell you that that is not true” (Becker). The ordinance the mayor signed into law was not an issue. The act of discreetly inputting her personal agenda into the ordinance,...


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...nance is redundant because these categories are protected by federal and state laws. It also allows a loophole for registered sex offenders to enter women’s bathrooms on their behalf which endangers women and children. The mayor is abusing her power to push personal agendas upon the city of Houston. The reason this ordinance should not pass and people of Houston should oppose HERO is to show retaliation of someone in office overstepping boundaries; not because the city of Houston is intolerant and discriminatory. The people of Houston should not be content with the passing of this ordinance because it hands out permission to the mayor to push her beliefs to give special privileges particularly to the LGBT community. So opposing the ordinance and voting no on the ballots will prove that the people of Houston will not tolerate any elected official to abuse their power.

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