Friday, February 3, 2012


Hello Friends;

  When I see a post, a journal entry, a story of some sort of legislation, I try to ask myself what it means 20 years down the line.  I also try to understand the reasoning and history of the issue so that I can see what has brought about this particular thing - be it legislation, policy change, or even attitude - and what it means to the people drafting it.  Even, does it mean different things, perhaps, to the people who draft it and the "audience".
  Most often I end up with a big shrug and a lot more confusion.  But, sometimes I see things and it gives me hope.  Not, perhaps, so much for the small step of the moment, but more for the direction that step is going.  This is such a case.  I'll give you the story from the ACLU blog - you can find it on my side bar.

  New HUD Rule Delivers for LGBT Americans

Last year, we told you about a proposed rule from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) regarding equal access to HUD housing programs regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Among the key requirements of the rule is a prohibition on inquires regarding sexual orientation or gender identity, as well as a prohibition on using sexual orientation or gender identity as grounds for decision-making in Federal Housing Administration (FHA) programs. Additionally, the rule brings the definition of “eligible families” into the 21st century by including those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT).

This afternoon, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan announced that the final rule will be published in the Federal Register early next week, meaning that it will take effect in just a little over one month from today! Needless to say, this is a tremendous step forward in efforts to stamp out discrimination against LGBT people in housing.

Of critical importance, the rule will require all organizations that operate HUD-assisted or HUD-insured housing facilities to serve LGBT Americans looking for shelter and housing—including religious organizations. As a coalition of more than 30 civil rights organizations (including the ACLU) wrote to HUD last year, once a religious organization chooses to provide housing services or programs with the aid of federal funds and benefits from HUD, it cannot shield itself from traditional safeguards that protect civil rights in the provision of those services. Those religious organizations that provide wholly private housing services will be unaffected by this new rule. We are pleased that HUD said that all organizations must provide equal access to HUD housing programs and did not sanction the use of religion to discriminate.

As Secretary Donovan stated last year at the time of the publication of the proposed rule, “This is a fundamental issue of fairness. We have a responsibility to make certain that public programs are open to all Americans. With this proposed rule, we will make clear that a person’s eligibility for federal housing programs is, and should be, based on their need and not on their sexual orientation or gender identity.”

The ACLU could not agree with Secretary Donovan more strongly. This new federal rule will move us one step closer to an America where decent, affordable housing is available to all Americans.

You see those last few words?  " all Americans."   Or, that earlier line:  "...we will make clear that a person's eligibility for federal housing programs is, and should be, based on their need and not on their sexual orientation or gender identity".      When a portion of one's country tries so diligently to deny a person his/her personhood, identity and value, it is so very encouraging to have the "official" portion step forward, even if just a small step, and declare us all as valuable Americans.

No Second Class!


Scottie said...

Hello Randy. I want to remind you that second class also can be a mind set. It can start in your own mind. I was talking to one of my doctors about another doctor. We both agreed the guy acted like a jerk to others, my doctor told me he thought the guy acted that way, had such a huge chip on his shoulder because he really felt inferior, that he was worried in his own mind he was not very good at what he did. My doctor told me that it was totally unnecessary and actually against being a good doctor to act that way toward people. I was impressed by the doctor I was talking to as he was the top of his field. So what we think about our self shows, what we think of our selves is transmitted from us and others pick up on it.

In most hospitals it was long accepted that cardiology bring the most hospital profit. Everyone has a heart and there is a lot of heart disease and other heart operation needs. The Open Heart ICU caters to the heart doctors. Not the other ICU's. They some times come to my ICU to consult on our PT's. I do not mistreat them, but I expect them to treat me as well as the other staff does, and to respect all our jobs and positions+. Twice I have had to go head to head with a heart doctor who was demeaning and rude, out of line and arrogant. I wont accept that kind of treatment, second class treatment from anyone. Not even at work. I was luck that my bosses backed me up both times and the last time I saw that doctor in our unit he admitted what he had wanted would not be done his way , but would stay the way we do it for our doctors. He was pleasant and decent to me. The others were stunned. The first day they thought I would be fired, and I told them I would walk out rather than be mistreated. I believe that strongly in respecting others, caring about others, and that same respect and caring covers me as well. But I also must hold myself to that same idea toward others. Besides I like me, have gotten use to me, and at 49 I am not likely to change much. LOL Hugs and loves,

randy said...

You are correct; it is often more important to be seen in one's own eyes as worthy than to have other's see you as worthy. And yet....


Scottie said...

Oh no doubt it is hard Randy. It is also scary when you think standing up for your self will cost you your livelihood, your home, car , ability to pay your bills.

One of the rare good things to come out of my early years is the fact I learned to stick stubbornly to my own sense of self worth. Never having been told I was good, OK, given credit, I learned to value my own view of myself in my own mind. So even in the military I stuck to who I was. In my first jobs I also stuck to being what I was. I fought for my right to be a gay man, accepted no ill treatment for it, even if I had to leave the job. When my .."family".. told me they wouldn't accept me or my "sexual partner I told them "yes they would, and treat them as well as my step sisters and step brothers mates or they simply would never see me again. I did not need them, I had already left home basically at 17. Joined the service at 18 and lived on my own since then. They decided to accept Ron, which was a good Idea I thought. is very important to remember this is an area where each person has to chart a course that is best for them, no one can tell them how to act or what to do. It effects them greatly and they need to make the choice. But we can encourage everyone to have a good self worth in their own minds, no one can change or challenge that. Hugs