The city of Kirksville, Missouri voted down an equal protection ordinance for LGBT's that included a human relations commission to determine if rights had been violated.

That commission would have tried to resolve any related cases of discrimination.

Most of those attending Monday night's meeting supported passage of the measure, but there were also those who spoke out against it, and the situation got a little heated at moments.

In all, about two dozen citizens took the podium to address the council.

“I was recently hired by Apple, a Fortune 500 company,” said Kelsey Smith, who supported the measure. “I'm also heterosexual, and yet here in Kirksville, Missouri, my boss at my part-time job could fire me just because she thinks I might be gay."

Former Kirksville City Councilman Aaron Rodgerson, who is also a pastor, spoke against the proposal.
"People should call the police and not go to some snitch, nine-member council (to report) that they believe or think they have been mistreated. Go to the police," said Rodgerson.

Apparently the police in Kirksville handle labor law according to that former council member.

The resignation letter is full of reasons why we need protections.

Dear Chairman Shook,

As of the end of today's meeting (3 July 2013), I am resigning from the Kirksville Historic Preservation Commission in response to the City Council vote on Monday on the Human Rights Commission Ordinance.

Because the Council is unwilling to include me, a gay man, as a full member of the Kirksville community, I cannot ethically continue to serve as an official volunteer on a commission that works on the city's behalf. I regret that some Council members believe my access to the same rights and privileges they enjoy represents 1) an impediment to Kirksville's economic growth; 2) a legal liability to the city; 3) an increase in the growth of city administration and in volunteer citizen participation in government; 4) a violation of religious beliefs; and 5) an unnecessary financial concern.

Not only is Kirksville a place where people make a difference, our city is a place where different people make a difference.  Different genders, religions, ethnicities, races, ages, sexualities, abilities, jobs, backgrounds, skills, politics, economic groups, languages.  Discrimination that hides behind uneasiness about the size of government or about saving money is still discrimination against difference in our community.

My sincere thanks to the members of the Kirksville Historic Preservation Commission and to the city staff associated with it for their professionalism.  I appreciate the valuable work you do to relate history, place, community and economic development to each other.

Cole Woodcox

Vice-Chair, Kirksville Historic Preservation Commission

Again we are faced with those that would rather throw upstanding members of the community away when given the choice of showing them they are a value to the community.

Originally posted to Angry Gays on Wed Jul 03, 2013 at 09:35 PM PDT.

Also republished by Show Me Kos, Milk Men And Women, and LGBT Kos Community.

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