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Republican Bill Would Stop Civil Rights Protections for Trans People

Steven Senne

The U.S. House of Representatives is coming out against transgender rights. Their newly-introduced bill, called the Civil Rights Uniformity Act of 2017, would dismantle Obama’s mandate that trans people be treated as a protected class.

Current civil rights laws protect people based on race, color, sex, national origin, and religion—protections based on sex have been used to protect transgender people from discrimination.

However, this protection could be stripped from transgender Americans. The new bill, sponsored by Pete Olson (R-TX), Ralph Abraham (R-LA), Brian Babin (R-TX), and Vicky Hartzler (R-MO), would keep the words "gender" and "sex" from being interpreted as gender identity.  The Civil Rights Uniformity Act also requires that the words “man" or "woman" be used in association with a person’s biological sex.   

The bill also states that, “no federal civil rights law shall be interpreted to treat gender identity or transgender status as a protected class, unless it expressly designates ‘gender identity’ or ‘transgender status’ as a protected class."

Brian Babin, who sponsored the bill believes that it corrects unauthorized liberties taken by President Barack Obama. “The Obama Administration used brute force and coercion to compel states and localities to accept its redefinition of sex to include 'gender identity,'"  Babin said. "The Founding Fathers never intended unelected bureaucrats in federal agencies to make sweeping changes to the definition of gender."

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