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Potential Executive Order by President Trump Targets LGBTQ Individuals

June 7th, 2017

Several members of the House of Representatives are urging President Trump to institute an executive order that would greatly impact LGBTQ individuals. A draft of the executive order, which released earlier this year, allowed federal employees, contractors, and grantees a “reasonable accommodation” to make decisions while on the job. When interacting with the public or providing government services under the belief that marriage exists only between a man and woman, that gender identity is fixed by the time a child is born, and that human life begins at conception.

The Draft of the Executive Order for Trump

Earlier in 2017, a leaked copy of a draft of this executive order revealed Trump’s administration’s efforts to change approaches towards LGBTQ individuals. The White House refused to formally comment on the executive order because this legislation is merely still just proposed and has not been executed. Language in the proposed executive order specifically protects the tax-exempt status of any organization that “believes, speaks, or acts” with these beliefs about marriage, sexual relationships, and gender identity. Legal experts have described this order as sweeping in nature. The proposed executive order’s definition of “religious exercise” includes any act that is motivated by a sincerely held religious belief. Some critics of this proposed legislation have already begun to wonder whether the president of the United States is authorized to grant religious freedom in such a sweeping manner. Many of the gender theories promoted by this executive order support a similar mind-frame to conservative Catholics and evangelical Christians.

Recent Changes for LGBTQ Individuals

At the end of April 2017, the Trump administration marked its first 100 days in office. Some of the recent legislation passed by this administration particularly affects LGBTQ individuals. Some of the of these policy changes include the following:

  • The Trump administration dropped its defense of Obama-era protections that were designed for transgender students.
  • An executive order was signed that nullified a previous initiative to ensure that federal contractors complied with laws forbidding discrimination on the basis of both sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • The Trump administration appointed someone to head the Department of Health and Human Services who supported a ban on same-sex marriage in 2006.

Six LGBTQ advocacy organizations graded Trump’s performance with failing grades and many of these groups commented that after much expansion, LGBTQ rights are now in the process of being restricted again.

The Future of the Legislation

In the event that this Executive Order is signed, the American Civil Liberties Union has announced plans to challenge this action. Only a small number of the House of Representatives, however, appears to support this Executive Order. The Universal Life Church’s blog aims to follow the most recent changes in federal legislation that is likely to affect LGBTQ individuals. By following this blog, readers can remain up to date with the most recent changes in federal and state legislation affecting LGBTQ individuals.

(image courtesy of Emmad Mazhari)

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