While the recent Supreme Court decision to legalize same-sex marriage was a landmark victory for LGBT Americans, the battle is still far from over. The next step is to pass the Equality Act, a key piece of legislation which would enshrine “bans on discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and sex in employment, housing, public accommodations, public education, federal funding, credit, and the jury system” into the law of the land. After spending the past few weeks reviewing the Equality Act, the Obama Administration agrees, and has come out in full support of the bill.
“Upon that review it is now clear that the administration strongly supports the Equality Act. That bill is historic legislation that would advance the cause of equality for millions of Americans” said White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest on Tuesday. “We look forward to working with Congress to ensure that the legislative process produces a result that balances both the bedrock principles of civil rights, like those I’ve just described, with the religious liberty that we hold dear in this country.” Unfortunately, both houses of Congress are still controlled by Republicans, who spend the majority of their time trying to pass laws discriminating against LGBT Americans and depriving them of their constitutional rights. However, Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have already endorsed the bill – and it’s not too late for us to possibly see a little executive order action from the White House in Obama’s remaining months. LGBT Americans have suffered for too long at the hands of their bigoted countrymen.
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.