Letter: Pollinator Week, but not Pride Month?
This week marks “Pollinator Week” in Michigan — a time to recognize pollinator species such as honey bees, butterflies, birds and bats, according to a resolution adopted by the Michigan House of Representatives.
Yet for the two years that I’ve served in the Michigan Legislature, the speaker of the House discarded resolutions declaring June as “LGBT Pride Month” by allowing them to sit in committee without adoption.
The attack in an Orlando gay nightclub heightened awareness of violence against the LGBT community, but gay and transgender people still deal with under-the-surface homophobia daily — nothing as extreme, but just enough of a reminder that butterflies are more valued in Michigan.
I’m not trying to detract from the merits of the adopted resolutions — I supported them — but a Republican-led Legislature that wants you to know that honey bees exist can acknowledge that gay people exist, too.
There are plenty more overtly homophobic state-sanctioned polices:
■In Michigan, people can be fired or evicted simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, while our Republican-led Legislature refuses to update the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act.
■Gov. Rick Snyder signed a law last year allowing private adoption agencies receiving state funds to discriminate against LGBT parents.
■Attorney General Bill Schuette wasted $2 million of taxpayer dollars fighting marriage equality at the U.S. Supreme Court, while lower courts ruled against him and other state attorneys general refused to join him.
■And most recently, “bathroom bills” were introduced in Michigan — laws that would prevent equal access for the LGBT community to use public facilities.
Politicians who offered thoughts and prayers to the gay victims of gun violence last weekend should also work to reverse laws that deem the LGBT community as job-seekers unworthy of employment protection, residents unworthy of housing stability and parents unworthy of kids.
In the meantime, please enjoy Pollinator Week.
Rep. Jeremy Moss, D-Southfield