Sinnach already reported earlier today on the sheer insanity of the newly released Texas GOP platform. It's proof positive that the Republican Party of Texas is firmly in the grips of the Tea Party. Among some of the crazier portions include an endorsement of corporal punishment in schools.
Classroom Discipline –We recommend that local school boards and classroom teachers be given more authority to deal with disciplinary problems. Corporal punishment is effective and legal in Texas.Not to mention an opposition to critical thinking (surprise, surprise):
Knowledge-Based Education – We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.And, of course, the platform contained a number of planks related to LGBT issues. Follow me below the fold.
Yes, the Texas GOP has made very, very clear in its platform that it is in no way, shape, or form a friend of LGBT people. The usual nonsense is in there, such as this plank on marriage:
We support the definition of marriage as a God-ordained, legal and moral commitment only between a natural man and a natural woman, which is the foundational unit of a healthy society, and we oppose the assault on marriage by judicial activists. We call on the President and Congress to take immediate action to defend the sanctity of marriage. We are resolute that Congress exercise authority under the United States Constitution, and pass legislation withholding jurisdiction from the Federal Courts in cases involving family law, especially any changes in the definition of marriage. We further call on Congress to pass and the state legislatures to ratify a marriage amendment declaring that marriage in the United States shall consist of and be recognized only as the union of a natural man and a natural woman.The whole "natural man" and "natural woman" thing is undoubtedly a reference to transgender people. As ThinkProgress notes:
Neither the United States nor any state shall recognize or grant to any unmarried person the legal rights or status of a spouse. We oppose the recognition of and granting of benefits to people who represent themselves as domestic partners without being legally married. We advocate the repeal of laws that place an unfair tax burden on families. We call upon Congress to completely remove the marriage penalty in the tax code, whereby a married couple receives a smaller standard deduction than their unmarried counterparts living together. The primary family unit consists of those related by blood, heterosexual marriage, or adoption. The family is responsible for its own welfare, education, moral training, conduct, and property.
In Texas, court decisions have created a patchwork of inconsistent laws, such that in some counties people who are trans can marry people of the opposite gender, but in others they can only marry people of the same gender (because the state only recognizes the sex identifier on their birth certificate). Last year, Texas Republicans unsuccessfully attempted to advance a bill that would have prevented the state from recognizing trans people’s identities when it comes to the right to marry. Clearly, “natural man” and “natural women” reflect this lingering anti-trans bias.Not surprisingly, the party also opposes ENDA:
We oppose this act through which the federal government would coerce religious business owners and employees to violate their own beliefs and principles by affirming what they consider to be sinful and sexually immoral behavior.Apparently, in the eyes of the Texas Republican Party, a "religious" boss should have the right to fire somebody because they like members of their own sex. Merely employing said person is equivalent to an "affirmation," apparently.
Not only does the Texas GOP oppose civil equality for LGBT people, but it feels the need to include a plank opposing homosexuality in general.
We affirm that the practice of homosexuality tears at the fabric of society and contributes to the breakdown of the family unit. Homosexual behavior is contrary to the fundamental, unchanging truths that have been ordained by God, recognized by our country’s founders, and shared by the majority of Texans. Homosexuality must not be presented as an acceptable “alternative” lifestyle, in public policy, nor should “family” be redefined to include homosexual “couples.” We believe there should be no granting of special legal entitlements or creation of special status for homosexual behavior, regardless of state of origin. Additionally, we oppose any criminal or civil penalties against those who oppose homosexuality out of faith, conviction or belief in traditional values.I wonder if the last line applies, in the Texas Republican Party's eyes, to whomever shot the teen lesbian couple outside of Corpus Christi (if indeed it was a hate crime).
ThinkProgress also notes:
Last year, the Williams Institute used data from the U.S. Census to estimate that Texas has 46,401 same-sex households, and 20 percent of them — over 9,000 couples — are raising children.And yet, according to the Texas GOP, not one of these households are actually families. Apparently they're just roommates who happen to be caring for a child.
This is some pretty sick stuff. You have to give the Texas GOP credit--there's no dressing this up or sugar-coating it. Their hatred is on full display for all to see.
I'm sure that doesn't come as a surprise to a single person here. But the Republican Party might soon be surprised when their strategy of gay-bashing becomes a losing one. It's already getting there. And, especially among younger Republicans 18-44, polling data is suggesting that the anti-gay animus is fading. Right now, they're about evenly split on marriage equality.
Once these neo-segregationists become fossils, it's going to be quite difficult indeed to stay this extreme on LGBT issues. Enjoy it while it lasts, Texas GOP. And enjoy your trip to the wrong side of history.