Realization of history repeating itself
As Allied Forces moved through Germany at the end of World War II, throwing open the gates to the horrendous concentration camps, the world heard a collective “we didn’t know!” from the German people. Germans claimed they had no idea their government had been carrying out some of the worst atrocities the civilized world had ever seen in their name.
How could they not know? Their leader spent his entire political career telling the German people explicitly what he intended to do. He based his rise to power as a party leader on denigrating an entire group of people because of their faith. He called for those he despised to “go back to their county.” He convinced a substantial portion of the population that all their problems were a result of those he called subhuman and animals, and only he could solve this contrived racist crisis.
The whole world now knows what the German leader’s solution was. Families of those the leader considered to be “subhuman” were ripped apart, forced into concentration camps and subjected to the whims of one of the most grotesque leaders the world has ever seen.
I learned about this period of history over 50 years ago in high school history class, and I was astounded. How could this happen? Throughout my life, when reminded of this epoch, I have always wondered in utter dismay, how could this have happened?
Now, in 2019, in America, I sadly understand. And I weep for the United States.
In favor of the LGBTQ+ ordinance
On Saturday, I attended the panel discussion to explore this question: Does Denton need a non-discrimination ordinance to protect residents who identify as LGBTQ+? I came away feeling that we do need that ordinance. Why?
Because there are still businesses and individuals who discriminate in the areas of housing, jobs, public spaces and medical care. It is a shame that we must provide protection from this discrimination. The reality is that we will need it until everyone is treated as a full participant in community life.
A job applicant should be hired on the basis of skills to fit the job and the ability to become a contributing member of the organization.
A renter should be accepted if the applicant can pay the rent and there is a reasonable expectation that the renter will take responsible care of the rented space.
A diner or ticket holder for a performance or user of a public park should be able to enjoy the activity and use all public facilities without worry.
None of the above activities has any connection to sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.
Allowing members of the LGBTQ+ community to participate fully in our city will not deprive you of any of your rights and privileges. You can still attend the church of your choice and espouse its teaching about human sexuality. We will simply provide a way for those who are discriminated against to have recourse. And we will provide a kinder city for all of us.
Gloria Voorhees Thomas,