Frankly, I was surprised when the Times-News out of Twin Falls published a statement by their editorial board chastising members of the Idaho Legislature for their recent behavior rejecting the possibility of printing anti-discrimination legislation that would have added specific protection within the Idaho Human Rights Act for gays and lesbians. I was surprised because the Times-News is not the "liberal rag" it is often accused by conservatives in the area of being.
I was both surprised and appreciative of the Times-News for accusing the State Affairs Committee of being on the "wrong side of history."
However, many readers of the Times-News did not agree with the editorial and have written letters to the editor saying as much. I've ignored the response for as long as possible, responses echoing common arguments about sexual deviancy, but this morning the title of one letter pulled me in and left me completely disgusted. Here are the first two paragraphs of said letter titled "Times-News backs 'radical gay agenda'":
John Pitts of Twin Falls is out of touch with reality. He also has apparently never met Idaho Senator Nicole LeFavour. Senator LeFavour is as far from radical as any person I've ever met.
I was surprised to see the Monday editorial parroting the radical gay agenda. As for gays being in fear of losing their jobs because they are gay, that is ridiculous. I have worked alongside several homosexuals and lesbians over the last 40 years and had no problem because they worked hard and kept their mouths shut about their sexual orientation.
Any employer who has a gay that is making money for him isn't going to fire him or her for being homosexual. What employers don't want is an unproductive or disruptive employee that they can't fire because they know if the Idaho Human Rights Act (sponsored by a radical homosexual, Nicole LeFavour, D-Boise) is passed, then the "gay card" can be played making it next to impossible to fire them.
The problem with John Pitts and his ilk, including Idaho legislators like Rep. Bert Stevenson, is that they have no idea what kind of discrimination exists in this state because the things they say and do, discriminatory acts, are not considered hateful or prejudice in their misinformed ideologies.
The fact that Idahoans can and are fired on a regular basis in this state based on their sexual orientation is a stark truth. Some Idahoans live in fear of their identities being revealed. Some Idahoans choose to remain silent rather than have their families, friends, communities and employers know who they love, what they love and what they believe. That's the reality of human rights, or the lack thereof, in this state. And clearly, from the language chosen in Mr. Pitts' letter to the editor, hate exists all over the Magic Valley as well as the entire state. It's not just on the radio, it's printed in the local papers.