"Massachusetts Family Institute also strongly opposed and testified against an array of other anti-family bills that are now defunct. The following bills have also been sent to a "study," meaning they are effectively dead for this legislation session."
Here are portions of his testimony at the Judiciary Committee Hearing on the matter:
"This bill is a radical assault on the right to privacy and safety of all women and children on behalf of one of the smallest special interest groups, which can be accommodated otherwise."
MFI's delusional logic here is that sexual preditors (to them GLBT people are one in the same) may now have access to public rest rooms.
"It is estimated that the ratio of male-to-female transsexuals to genetic males is at the most 1:2000 (or five one-hundredths of 1%) with the ratio of female-to-male transsexuals being even smaller."
His point here is that this group is too small to bother with. He seems to feel that if a group is too small their needs are outweighed by his wants.
"This bill would add the vague terminology of “gender identity or expression” to the state ban on sex discrimination. The bill says, “The term ‘gender identity or expression’ shall mean a gender-related identity, appearance, expression, or behavior of an individual, regardless of the individual’s assigned sex at birth.” There is no generally accepted definition for “gender” or “expression,” which would cause chaos in the inevitable swirl of litigation, as activists press for access to the most private spaces of the opposite sex.
The word “gender” (as opposed to “sex”) is dangerously vague. It refers to socially constructed roles unrelated to biology. The term denies immutable biological differences between the sexes and places women and children at risk from biological males."
Here is Mineau's attempt to mire the public is legaleze. First he says that there is no legal definition for gender, then tries to inject his own opinions on the matter as fact, throwing in the word "dangerously" for good measure. Keeping the public afraid is how this organization keeps it's funding, so I can understand why we hear this language from them so often.
"Transgenderism is classified as a disorder by the American Psychiatric Association in its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Under this bill, if a father and his young daughter went to a public accommodation and the young girl needed to use the ladies room, her own father could not go in with her, but a man claiming a gender identity disorder could."
Apparently Mineau thinks that if transgender is a mental disorder they are not to be afforded the dignity of equality. Then in a bizarre twist he tries to say that parent's aren't allowed to cross the gender line for the sake of their small children needing to use the bathroom. What parent has not already come across this problem and dealt with it? The public accomodates what it sees fit to; all situations are up for their individual scrutiny. A man trying to help is little girl try to use the facilities has the public sympathy, just as someone with "mental disorders" do too. Mineau wants to have his cake and eat it too. He wants people to believe that transgender is a disorder, but then wants the public to hold that against these people somehow. People should not be discriminated against on the basis of who they are inherently, but for people like Mineau this is too difficult of a concept to grasp.
"H1722 also deletes protection from discrimination for children, or based on marital status, veteran status or membership in the armed services, or recipients of public assistance. Public policy should not allow an infinitesimally small percentage of the population with a psychiatric disorder to use whatever public restroom or bathhouse they want, while simultaneously removing protection of families with children, veterans and people on public assistance."
There is absolutely no explanation of this charge given, but I guess it goes along with Mineau's scare tactics. Perhaps Mineau thinks that his word is good enough. Perhaps he thinks that the public has forgotten that he is behind a petition so rife with fraud that there was a special hearing to investigate the matter, or that since then Senator Edward Augustus has proposed legislation preventing the elements which led to this trouble. Mineau had charged KnowThyNeighbor.org with intimidation because they posted the names of people who signed his petition, yet he used Wanted: Dead or Alive style posters against legislators himself. Isn't that more clearly intimidation? When the legislators met on the historical day of June 14, 2007 and voted 151-45 to deny Mineau's attempt to write discrimination into the Constitition he claimed that those who changed their votes were given what amounts to bribes. Time and Mineau's inability to prove his accusations have shown the truth behind this claim. Mineau's testimony on H1722 is yet another mistruth that he had hoped the public would fall for. In addition to all these lies Mineau tries to re-sell the idea that Catholic Charities was forced to pull out of Massachusetts rather than be forced to abide by our laws against discriminating against same sex families interested in adoption. In actuality Catholic Charities had already allowed several adoptions to same sex couples over the years, but since the dawn of marriage equality had tried to cover up this truth and seem more conservative. To say they were forced out is simply untrue, the board did not want to go, but it was Cardinal O'Maley's call to make. Let's put the blame where it's due. From the Boston Globe we find the unbiased truth:
"In the past two decades, Catholic Charities has placed 720 children in adoptive homes, including 13 with same-sex couples."
For the betterment of public understanding on this matter, review the talking points made by the Massacusetts Transgender Political Coalition and the facts supported by the ACLU:
House Bill 1722 would make it clear that discrimination on the basis of an individual’s “gender identity or expression”* also violates those state civil rights laws.
• Transgender students will be protected from discrimination in public schools.
• The Massachusetts laws forbidding discrimination in employment, housing, and credit and in places of public accommodation will explicitly apply to transgender individuals.
• Transgender people will have the same rights as others to bring complaints to the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD), to have that agency evaluate and hear their claims, and to bring their claims to court.
• The MCAD’s advisory boards will be encouraged to include transgender members, just as diverse representation from various communities and businesses is encouraged under current law.
• The Governor’s Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth will become a more inclusive Commission on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth.
• Assaults and property damage crimes intended to intimidate individuals because of their race, color, religion, national origin, sexual orientation or disability will be punished in a like manner when they are committed with the intent to intimidate an individual because of gender identity or expression. The State Police, who have responsibility now for keeping records and making reports concerning crimes motivated by bigotry or bias, will add crimes because of gender identity or expression to those records and reports.
• Sex-segregated accommodations will continue to be available, as they are now, consistent with a person’s own gender identity or expression.
In 1989, Massachusetts passed Ch. 516, “An Act Making It Unlawful to Discriminate on the Basis of Sexual Orientation,” making clear that our Commonwealth’s basic civil rights laws protect gay men and lesbians. Since then, 14 states have passed or amended their state anti-discrimination laws to protect gay and lesbian rights and have included transgender rights. Minnesota (1993); Rhode Island (2001); California and New Mexico (2003); Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, and Washington, DC (2005); New Jersey and Washington (2006); Colorado, Iowa, Oregon, and Vermont (2007).
My take on all this is that Massachusetts Family Institute's practices are founded on lies, is morally bankrupt, and therefore cannot be trusted. They are nothing more than a group of bigots trying to perpetuate a time when they were free to discriminate against whom they chose without public opinion against them. America is growing in a direction that takes it away from such devisiveness, and into a direction that encourages individuals to embrace themselves for who they are. We in Massachusetts have been known for being the leaders of liberty and enlightenment since before our nation's existance. Giving equality and protection under the law is not just the morally responsible thing to do, it's one of our founding principles that our Constitution calls for.