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Texas Values President: Rep. Mary Gonzalez Wants to End LGBT Discrimination "Because She is Gay"


by: Joe Deshotel

Fri Feb 14, 2014 at 09:00 AM CST


Texas Values' President Jonathan Saenz is no stranger to levying attacks on openly gay politicians but he went too far when he suggested that state Representative Mary Gonzalez supports scrubbing antiquated laws from the books, requiring public sex education courses to falsely teach that homosexual behavior is "criminal activity," because she is not heterosexual.

Saenz, an avid Greg Abbott supporter, told the San Antonio Express News that, "It should be no surprise that she wants the state to ban students from learning that homosexual conduct is not safe for school-age children and it's sexual conduct that should be discouraged and not promoted in public school." Saenz seems to struggle with the concept of age-appropriate sex education and somehow confuse it with pornographic instruction.

State laws on the books in Texas still mandate public sex education courses teach students that homosexual behavior is "not acceptable" and is "criminal activity." The latter has been false since a 2003 Supreme Court decision in Lawrence v. Texas struck down laws against sodomy as unconstitutional.

More below the jump...

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There have been movements to remove these antiquated laws but Republican primary politics and conservative groups like 'Texas Values' make such efforts unlikely to garner support of the majority in the legislature.

Arguing for a ban on recognizing same-sex marriages, Saenz says, "It's important for states like Texas and others to continue to see the value of Mom and Dad together being married and raising children." Of course children of same-sex couples say the same about Mom and Mom and Dad and Dad, and it's Texas Values that is working to prevent them from being able to do just that.

If Texas policy should be the model for protecting the family, why do we have the nation's highest rate of repeat teen pregnancies, or the largest number of children in need of adoption? Of the 101,000 children needing adoption in the United States more than 10% reside in Texas according to statistics by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Those 13,148 children in Texas is more than California and more than twice that of New York, the two states most loathed by Texas conservatives who like to paint themselves as supporting "traditional family values."

What's led to Texas having such frightful statistics are pretty much every policy position held by "Texas Values," and a complete turning of the eye from the real needs of the women and children of this state by its leadership -- education and health care.

Saenz says Texans have gone to the ballot box and spoken on these issues and that the debate is "settled." But the national mood has shifted over the past few years and to some degree so has Texas voters' opinion according to a 2013 poll by Equality Texas.

According to last year's poll, "65.7% of voters support extending domestic partnership benefits to government/public university employees; an increase of 3.4%" over a similar poll taken in 2010. The poll also found a 5.2% increase in support for full marriage equality; transforming a 52% majority against into a 47.9% plurality for.

The most recent member of the Texas legislature to be voted into office is Celia Israel (D- Austin) who is openly gay and she told the San Antonio Express News, "The voters didn't care I was running as an openly gay candidate...Public education funding was the No. 1 issue in the campaign, and that will be the same moving forward." The question that now remains is, "Will the organization called 'Texas Values' change it's position to be inline with most Texas voters, or will they just change their name?"

You can follow me on Twitter at @joethepleb.



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