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L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE

Number 855, January 17, 2016

As usual, our problem is that we're too damned polite.

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Goodbye Annise Parker
by Sean Gangol
RGangol@sbcglobal.net

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Special to L. Neil Smith's The Libertarian Enterprise

This particular subject that I am writing about is something that quite literally hits close to home. As I have mentioned before I live in the Houston area, though I live just outside the city limits (thank God). As far as Houston mayors go, I can honestly say that I have never been impressed with any of them, going all the way back to Lee "Out of Town" Brown. Though I can say that Mayor Annise Parker, who just recently finished her last term, managed to lower the bar that was already pretty low to begin with.

I have mentioned Annise Parker in a previous article, though I mistakenly called her "Denise" Parker. Her claim to fame was that she was Houston's first openly gay mayor. Personally, I knew that she was going to be trouble. Not because she was gay, but because of the blatant smugness that seemed to ooze out of her every time she spoke or even smiled. She seemed to have a habit of squinting her eyes whenever she spoke, which made it seem as if she was speaking with her eyes shut. It reminded me of the joke from the "Smug Alert" episode of South Park where it was pointed out that people who talk with their eyes shut are usually the ones who are the most smug. I know it sounds petty, but it would later turn out that I was right about her. As I mentioned in my "The Secularists Miss the Point, Again" article I pointed out that she had shoved a piece of legislation through the city council called "Houston Equal Rights Ordinance" or HERO for short. It was supposed to prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender, in both the private and public sectors (except for religious organizations). Despite already having laws on the books that prohibit discrimination, Parker and the city council saw it fit to ram this piece of legislation down the throats of the people of Houston with little to no discussion of the ramifications of the bill.

The major ramification that many, justifiably, had issue with was the section of the bill that would allow a man who felt like he was a woman trapped in a man's body on that particular day to use The Ladies Room or a woman who felt as if she was a man trapped in a woman's body could do the same with the Men's Room. One of the biggest opponents of this bill were church organizations, which Parker then tried to subpoena to turn in their emails or their sermons in for inspection. She would later back down from it, when she realized that public sentiment wasn't on her side. This law would later be challenged in court and would go all the way to the Texas Supreme Court where they ruled that the legislation had to be placed on a ballot so that the people of Houston could decide if they wanted it on the books.

This is where the fun really began. When Election Day started to roll around the corner, there were several ads on TV where you had a military veteran who complained about being denied a job because the prospective employer hated the military. Though interesting enough he didn't name the company or the person who denied him the job. Then there were two black men who complained about being charged a cover price at a bar that wasn't charging any of the white patrons. I find this scenario highly unlikely considering that businesses these days can't even refuse to participate in gay weddings without facing the wrath of litigious happy lawyers or local governments. The major drawback to these ads is that they never seemed to address the issue that many people had with the law. The opposition of the law actually played an ad that showed a pedophiliac taking advantage of the law to have his way with little girls in the Ladies Room. A stretch? Maybe. I will say that this ad was more effective than anything shown by the supporters of the law.

The law was then voted down by the people of Houston. Cue the Nelson laugh from the Simpsons. That wasn't even the funniest part of this whole drama. The funniest part was the reaction of Parker when she realized that she wasn't going to get her way. First she said that we haven't heard the last of the issue like some cartoon villain that tells the hero "you haven't heard the last of me." I always think it's hilarious when you have democrats who claim to represent the will of the people, except for when that will works against them. What is even funnier is that she accused the people of Houston of being Homophobic, the same people who voted for an openly gay mayor for three two year terms. She even managed to get into a pissing contest with her opponents on Twitter, where she called them "Transphobic." Real professional, Annise.

As I said before, I have never been too fond of any mayor before Parker and I probably won't be fond of any mayor after her, but she was the first mayor that caused the city so much embarrassment. Parker, I only have this to say to you: grow the hell up. No, I will not address you as Miss Mayor or Madame Mayor or whatever the hell it is that you expect me to address you as. You lost that privilege when you chose to act like a child when you didn't get your way. Guess what, Parker? The same people who saw it fit to elect you on three different occasions didn't feel comfortable with having to share the restroom with somebody of the opposite sex. That may not affect you, since you probably don't use public restrooms. If you did and I came waltzing in and said "what's up girlfriend?" you would likely call for half of the Houston PD to keep me out. No? Okay, would you like to make a wager then? Yeah, I thought so.


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