Monday, April 14, 2008

Houston's Finest

A Matter of Security?

These six mounted officers are members of the Houston, Texas Police Department.
Are they:

A.) Stationed for an Obama or Clinton or McCain political rally?
B.) Preparing for participation in a community parade?
C.) Catching a nap (maybe the guy on the right)?
D.) Protecting area members of the Human Righ*s Campaign from "terrorist" transgenders.

Yep, believe it or not - the riot police were summoned by HRC to "protect" themselves from a protest of mostly transgender women and men who continue to be angered with the organizations actions last fall with the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. For the record, HRC supported dumping transgenders out of the bill, despite a pledge only days before by HRC President Joe Solmonese to the annual Southern Comfort gathering of transpeople in Atlanta, GA to support a "fully inclusive" ENDA only.

And HRC continues to defend its action and promises to do it again should a non-inclusive ENDA gain any glint of the light of day in the Senate this year.

Phyllis Frye is a Houston attorney and eminently regarded member of the transgender community. She was a guiding force behind the Houston protest. Imagine her surprise when days before the event, the Houston Police Department paid her a call. Any other transperson might have been easily intimidated, but not Phyllis and a few others who managed to exercise their First Amendment rights none-the-less. Now, at no time were any threats made. At no time were any disruptive actions contemplated. But HRC needed the mounted police for "security".

We've had much less security at our local Pride celebration each year - and we're right down the street from world-renowned loose screw Fred Phelps and Westboro Baptist Church. And despite their horrific messages and rants and protests - I think I'd actually feel safer in their presence (at least they are smart enough not to physically assault someone - though they'd love for you to do that to them!) - than I would the Mounted Patrol of the Houston Police. The history of transgenders and law enforcement is rife with atrocities. And HRC knows that.

Shame on them.

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