Houston’s HERO ordinance went down in flames last night as voters overwhelmingly rejected the attempt to provide civil rights protection for a broad range of persons. The radical right and Tea Partisans were successful as portraying the HERO ordinance as a bathroom fight, raising all kinds of fears about the possibility that transgender men would use women’s restrooms. Red doesn’t have the energy today to go into the long and tortured history of the HERO ordinance. Suffice it to say, that its supporters completely bungled this every step of the way and made the worthy ordinance vulnerable to the kind of right wing hysteria that ultimately brought it down. Houston voters (or at least about 60 of them) should be ashamed that they fell prey to this kind of nonsense. The supporters of HERO should be ashamed of the pathetic campaign they ran and the legal bungling that allowed this to become a major political football. Houston will now be the only major Texas city without a similar ordinance. The complete lack of problems resulting from the passage of similar ordinances by Austin, San Antonio, Fort Worth and Dallas should have been a major selling point. But now, Houston can wear its bigotry proudly. So go out today and discriminate against an L, a G, a B or a T and feel good about yourselves Houston.
Check out the Houston Chronicle which has lots of photos of some very happy bigots. Some day we will look at these images the way we look at photos of the angry mobs confronting civil rights protestors in the 1960’s.