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HERO ballot language set

Here we go.

HoustonUnites

City Council on Wednesday approved the language that will appear on the November ballot for voters to decide the fate of Houston’s equal rights ordinance, one week after the Texas Supreme Court ruled that the original wording was incorrect.

Earlier this month, City Council signed off on a ballot item that would have asked voters whether they wanted to repeal the ordinance. Conservative critics sued the city over the wording, saying it was intended to confuse voters that would naturally vote “no” on any item pertaining to the law – a vote that would have instead affirmed the ordinance.

After the supreme court’s ruling that the city had erred, Mayor Annise Parker’s administration came back with new language that instead asks voters if they favor the law. It’s a technical issue, but one that both campaigns needed clarity on to craft their messaging and start running ads.

City Council on Wednesday went even further into the weeds on the ballot language when at-large councilman C.O. Bradford offered an amendment that would have removed from the ballot language enumerating the groups protected under the law, such as pregnant women and veterans. Bradford eventually withdrew the amendment, and City Council unanimously approved the administration’s version, but not before touching off some debate.

Bradford said that naming the protected classes “simply serves as a verbiage that’s going to be provocative, that’s going to simply arouse passion” on both sides of the issue.

[…]

Parker, who has been vocal about her frustration with the court ruling, said Wednesday’s discussion was “civil.”

“The question was do you try to be generic and say ‘certain characteristics’ or ‘special characteristics’ or do you list out the characteristics that are protected in the interest of transparency,” Parker said. “Clearly City Council finally came down on just listing everything out.”

All due respect, but CM Bradford is just wrong here. It’s the very existence of HERO that has aroused the “passion” of its zealous opponents, and it’s the indignity of having their civil rights put up for a vote that has aroused the “passion” of the people who worked so hard to get HERO passed in the first place. What exactly is the problem with spelling out what HERO does? The Supreme Court, you may recall, explicitly said that was okay. The opposition campaign against HERO is based entirely on lies. If there’s one place where it ought to be unambiguously clear what HERO is and what HERO does, it’s the ballot language. Texas Leftist has more.

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20 Comments

  1. Julain Deleon says:

    It is interesting to me that Michael Kubosh would throw his colleagues on City Council under the bus by suggesting they would vote for an Ordinance that is illegal (e.g., allowing a man to dress as a woman to enter a women’s restroom…). Many feel Kubosh is doing this for political gain. Kubosh has had many opportunities to set the record straight, but he prefers to speak at places of worship and further perpetuate his attack on African Americans, Latinos, Veterans, Disabled, LGBT community, etc.

    Michael Kubosh works at City Hall, so the excuse he was not included will not work. He has no problem asking for a vote, so he should have no problem seeking to understand.

  2. Paul Kubosh says:

    You posted the exact same post on a prior topic. There were several people who didn’t vote for HERO or ERO. You don’t comment about them. You continue to single out Michael Kubosh as if he was the only one on City Council to Vote against ERO. Maybe your anger about Michael Kubosh is his aggressiveness with the Mayor and not so much his stance on HERO or ERO. Maybe you just dislike Fat White Guys?

    Maybe you are like ROSS (=HOTZE) and you just think everyone who is voting against HERO is a bigot.

  3. Julain Deleon says:

    Paul, Constituents are being educated on the pretext of his actions related to the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance (HERO). It is a shame Michael Kubosh has denied African Americans, Latinos, Disabled, LGBT, Military, etc. protection from discrimination by voting against HERO.

    It is sad how Michael Kubosh threw his colleagues on City Council under on the bus to suggest they would vote for an Ordinance that is illegal. As he well knows, it is illegal with or without HERO for a man to go into a women’s restroom or a woman to go into a men’s restroom to commit a crime. Michael Kubosh looks ridiculous at faith-based organizations and on television peddling his lies about the Ordinance. There is a Legal department at City Hall if he has questions about the Ordinance.

    Michael Kubosh is not fit (no pun intended) to be on City Council.

  4. Paul Kubosh says:

    Julain,

    You are naive when it comes to the criminal mind. This ordinance is just like leaving your keys in your car. You can leave them in your car if you would like and it is still illegal to steal your car.

    As far as the legal department is concerned they are puppets of the mayor.

    Your statement…

    “It is a shame Michael Kubosh has denied African Americans, Latinos, Disabled, LGBT, Military, etc. protection from discrimination by voting against HERO.” flies in the face of existing state and Federal Law.

    You should just relax the ordinance is going to pass.

  5. Bill Daniels says:

    @Julain:

    Michael Kubosh could screw up every vote from here on out, and he would STILL be a Houston hero (pun intended) for his family’s instrumental role in ridding the city of the scourge of red light cameras. As to the ordinance itself, most of it duplicates federal law, so that is just window dressing, trying to obfuscate the real issue, which is to elevate the rights of trangendered people above the rights of others who would be uncomfortable with sharing bathrooms with them.

    Personally, I’d be OK with mandating that they must be able to use the bathrooms in government owned facilities, but leave the choice in privately owned buildings to the owners of those buildings. After all, last time I checked, the building owner pays the taxes, pays the light bill, pays for the maintenance, etc., not the government. Let the guy with skin in the game make the decision, and let the free market decide whether that was a good decision or not.

  6. Ross says:

    @Bill Daniels, should a business owner also be able to exclude blacks from the bathroom in his business, since he feels uncomfortable around them? How about foreigners? Your free market bullshit fails when every business in an area decides to exclude some group they don’t like. Perhaps you think the pre-civil rights days were great. They were, as long as you were white.

    BTW, you have no right to not be uncomfortable.

  7. Bill Daniels says:

    @Ross:

    To answer your question, yes, I think a business owner should be able to exclude blacks, foreigners or anyone else that owner doesn’t want to serve. That is a key principle of private property rights, the right to exclude others. Strong private property rights are necessary to preserve freedom, and to keep us from becoming communists. For what it’s worth, when I grew up, I was taught that communism was evil, and that communists were bad people. I guess that makes me a bigot.

  8. Julian Deleon says:

    Paul, A great radio ad that will help further educate you. That nonsense about the criminal mind is laughable and a pretext to discriminate. You already know that.

    http://houstonunites.org/Radio

  9. Jules says:

    Bill – yes, yes it does.

  10. Paul kubosh says:

    Bill is right…communism is an evil plague that infested much of the world. The whole reason I love ronald Reagan is because he took down the evil empire. You think putin is bad….yiu have no idea..

  11. Manuel Barrera says:

    Do you have any idea who that discrimination against Blacks worked at businesses,Ross? I seriously doubt it. Homosexuals, which one can’t tell if they are homosexuals may be discriminated against, only if the tell someone that they are homosexuals. They don’t wear a scarlet H around their neck do they.

    I am curious Ross why you seem to think that discrimination against “illegals” is okay, but it is not as to transgenders? Is some discrimination alright according to Garp (Ross). The book is much better than the movie, Ross

    There is no discrimination in not allowing men into women’s locker rooms. Because you are not allowing all men, regardless of race, ethnicity, etc. What you want is discrimination that would allow some men to enter the women’s bathrooms. So why are you promoting discrimination Ross?

    Curious Ross, were you around when discrimination like that occurred, I was. I have been fighting discrimination all of my adult life, and I just don’t see the discrimination that the LGBT folks claims is all around them. Let me repeat if you can’t tell they are LGBT how can you discriminate? I have not had anyone answer that question, educate me.

  12. Ross says:

    @Bill Daniels, congratulations, you made one of the arguments that was used to fight to keep the Jim Crow laws. I bet you feel proud of that. Your arguments on private property rights are utterly without merit when it comes to businesses and organizations that serve the public.

    @Manuel, I am not old enough to have seen the worst of segregation. I am old enough to remember the passage of civil rights laws in the 60’s, even though I was not old enough to really understand why they were important. I am fortunate to have been raised by parents and grandparents who believed in civil rights and that discrimination is evil.

    Manuel, you really need to talk to some gays about discrimination. Perhaps you could talk to the families of gays who were assaulted or murdered, simply for being gay. It might open your eyes.

  13. Bill Daniels says:

    @Ross:

    Your analogy fall flat. Here’s why:

    You will note that 1) I was OK with the Houston City government passing the law, but only for government buildings. I am against FORCING private businesses to do anything they do not want to do. That’s completely different than Jim Crow, which FORCED government and private businesses both to discriminate. I am not in favor of anything like that. I am in favor of private property rights, however.

    Supporting the right of a business to discriminate is not the same thing as supporting discrimination. Think about burning the American flag. I support the right of someone to do that, however I don’t actually support flag burning. Hope this helps.

  14. Bill Daniels says:

    *falls flat

  15. Mainstream says:

    Without judging, I want to make sure I understand Bill Daniel’s position. Do you really think in the interest of maximizing the freedom of the owner (but obviously not of the customer), that it is OK in modern life for a private business like a McDonald’s franchisee to decide that s/he will not serve anyone who is black? Or for a mom and pop convenience store to post a sign that “we do not serve anyone Irish?” Or for a private day care to post a sign “we do not accept Jewish children in our daycare”? Or for a dry cleaners to put an ad in the newspaper, “help wanted. We are peace-loving, and do not hire veterans.?”

  16. Bill Daniels says:

    @Mainstream:

    Yes, that’s exactly it. The owner who pays the taxes, employee salaries, mortgage, etc. should be able to make his own decisions, good or bad, likewise, that owner’s customers, and potential customers, should feel free to make their own decisions, too.

    Not exactly the same thing, but remember when J.C. Penny decided to go to the “every day low price” strategy and stop doing the “it’s on sale” marketing? The free market punished their decision, because they didn’t like it, and J.C. Penny suffered. In the examples you gave, I am sure the free market would punish all of those owners who posted those signs. Personally, if I saw a sign like that, I’d probably pass by and go on to the next store where I didn’t see a sign like that……my right as a consumer. I’m guessing others would, too, which is why, sans laws prohibiting signs like that, I doubt you’d see many of them anyway.

    And, once again, this applies only to private business. Govt. should treat all citizens equally. If the bathroom ordinance only applied to city of Houston buildings, I wouldn’t have an issue with it.

  17. Jules says:

    Bill, why should the owner of a private business pay taxes? It’s a PRIVATE business. Shouldn’t he or she feel free to make their own decisions about this? Your insistence that PRIVATE businesses pay taxes borders on communism. Good day to you.

  18. Bill Daniels says:

    @Jules:

    Taxes are a necessary evil. All I could ask is that everyone and every business pay taxes, so we all have at least a little skin in the game. That means most non profits, including churches and the NFL should be paying tax, along with you, me, and every other business.

  19. Manuel Barrera says:

    Julian, I was never a treasurer for either one. Why do you insist on posting nonsense. I will be happy to meet with you to discuss any concerns you have. Maybe I can find out who put you up to telling fibs.

    Did you notice that Herlinda Garcia has voted straight Democrat? That Abel Davila is not a Republican. That Art Aguilar is not a bad Republican. That Diana Davila is not a bad Republican. Me you can call a bad Republican if you so desire.