President Barack Obama wrote an op-ed piece Sunday in the Huffington Post urging Congress to pass a ban on workplace discrimination against LGBT employees.
In the article, Obama stressed the importance of passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which makes it explicitly illegal to fire someone because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. While 21 states have their own protections, there is no federal protection for LGBT individuals.
However, it’s unclear how the ENDA will fare in Congress. Up-and-coming Republican Sen. Marco Rubio disagreed with Obama over the summer when Rubio said he was “not for any special protections based on orientation.”
The president recently found a new title as the “first gay president.” He’s the first sitting president to publicly and explicitly declare his support for the LGBT community.
In his article, Obama said that regardless of who you are, following your dreams and pursuing your happiness is “America’s promise.”
Despite his wavering views on the topic as a senator, he has maintained his support in recent years as president. Obama took interest in the appeal of California’s 2008 ban on same-sex marriage, Proposition 8, filing a formal brief in support of the LGBT community.
His recent interest in the ENDA is reassuring. In a rare moment, the president wrote a personal article, which is an effective way to connect to an issue and those affected by it. An article brings the president to a more approachable level that we’re used to interacting with. There are now hundreds of comments in reply to Obama.
An article inspires those who wouldn’t normally read the news to not only educate themselves, but to be an engaged citizen.
With moves like this, the president brands himself as the face of issues like LGBT rights.
Obama is making great strides in the right direction for the LGBT community. This dedication has now been put in print.
Take the time to read our president’s article and decide where you stand. If our president can take the time to reach out to you personally, maybe it’s time for a response on our end.