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Endorsement watch: Did we mention that you should vote for HERO?

The Chron reiterates its endorsement of the HERO.


All’s fair in love and local politics, we presume, although a campaign of fear-mongering and false claims against Houston’s equal rights ordinance is unworthy of this city. HERO, Proposition 1 on the November ballot, ought to stand or fall on its own merits, not on outright lies that anti-gay activists and other opponents have been pushing for weeks – with recent assistance from former Astros star Lance Berkman, who did himself no favors with his ill-advised anti-HERO TV ad. Houstonians deserve better.

As we’ve written before, and as opponents are well aware, the city’s equal rights ordinance is not about making it lawful for hordes of transgender women to assault little girls in public rest rooms. Opponents also are well aware that indecent exposure, harassment and assault in rest rooms is already illegal. The equal rights ordinance doesn’t change that.


Houston, by the way, is the last major Texas city to enact equal rights protections. Dallas, El Paso and San Antonio have had nondiscrimination protections on the books for more than a decade and have had no problems (with transgendered bathroom lurkers or anything else, for that matter).

If the ordinance is repealed, our local economy is likely to suffer. Repeal would undercut our rapidly growing reputation for openness and appreciation for diversity. The result would be a loss of jobs when conventions and big-time sporting events like the Super Bowl decide to go elsewhere, when corporations conclude that Houston may not be all that interested in nurturing a diverse workforce, when talented young people get the impression that Houston is stuck in the past.

Discrimination is bad for business. That’s why the Greater Houston Partnership, the Greater Houston Black Chamber of Commerce and numerous other businesses and business organizations are supporting HERO.

I continue to be optimistic about HERO, though I’m not ready to be confident. The poll results we have show that if people know what HERO is, they support it. It’s sadly not sufficient, but it is nice to have the truth on your side.

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  1. Katy Anders says:

    Good call.

    A woman at work was asking me about the upcoming election. I got her on board with Proposition 1 but later, she asked, “What about that other one? The one that lets men into womens bathrooms?”

    She didn’t realize it was the same thing we’d been talking about.

    I’m optimistic, too.

  2. Bayard Rustin says:

    The opponents of HERO are really waging on war on gays and are using the “men in women’s bathrooms” as a cover for hate. Wouldn’t it be something if HERO were defeated and the Super Bowl was pulled from Houston? What would Jared Woodfill do then?