Despite the intervention of the powerful LGBT Human Rights Campaign and donations from at least one billionaire, an LGBT nondiscrimination ordinance passed in October by the City Council of Springfield, MO, has fallen at the hands of Springfield voters.
The ordinance passed last October after a two-year campaign. It banned discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in housing, employment, and public accommodations. All a complainant would have to do is fill out a form that would require the accused to defend himself before the city’s Commission on Human Rights and Community Relations. Complaints could have then been forwarded to the prosecutor’s office.
One opponent of the law described the Commission on Human Rights as a “very dangerous entity” and that Springfield businesses “will not have to get a license that the Mayor’s Commission on Human Rights officiates.” The Commission has made a recommendation that all businesses be certified for diversity training.
Upon passage by the City Council, opponents of the measure vowed to gather enough signatures to put the issue to a vote. The $50 million-a-year LGBT Human Rights Campaign intervened. Also involved was the powerful Gill Foundation that funds LGBT activism exclusively and has been a financial backer of the attacks on Cardinal Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco for his defense of Catholic teaching on human sexuality. Despite their involvement, the ordinance fell by a vote of 51-49.
The introduction of sexual orientation and gender identity as new categories of nondiscrimination on par with race, creed, and sex has led to a situation in Washington State where a business owner was told to turn off a Christian radio station because it offended an LGBT employee. In the city of Oakland, city employees were told they would be fired if they set up a Christian employees association even though LGBTs has set up one for themselves.
In December, the voters of Fayetteville, Arkansas, a college town, also repealed an LGBT nondiscrimination law by a vote of 52-48.
Follow Austin Ruse on Twitter @austinruse.