Should this be an amendment?
Yes
20% (7)
20% (7)
No
48.6% (17)
48.6% (17)
Yes, but it requires some changes
17.1% (6)
17.1% (6)
No, it requires several changes
5.7% (2)
5.7% (2)
It should not be up to the federal government
8.6% (3)
8.6% (3)
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Poll: Discrimination Amendment

I have thought up a basic outline for what I believe could become an amendment to the constitution. It is meant to protect the rights of american citizens to fight for their american dreams as well as simply to live their lives without discrimination providing unnecessary barriers which people are unable to challenge. It goes something like:

28th Amendment:
"Discrimination towards individuals or groups in public or private properties which violates the rights of the discriminated party is unlawful if they are challenged for their natural characteristics. Natural characteristics includes all characteristics of one's natural appearance (natural hair color, race, eye color), gender, genetic mutations and disorders, and sexual orientation."

States have laws protecting against discrimination due to one's race, gender, etc. Should there not be a national amendment from which states determine the level of punishment for discrimination based on the crime? This amendment would not protect individuals from discrimination based on tattoos, dyed hair, piercings, voluntary surgery altering one's gender or appearance. Most importantly it protects people from discrimination due to sexual orientation.

This would also lead to a rise in concern over protection of students who are bullied for sexual orientation on a national level. With this it would turn into a crime for a school to disregard bullying, thus it would be mandatory for schools to establish some sort of preventative measures, even if it was on a state-by-state basis rather than a national plan.

Discrimination against individuals because of their sexual orientation is in certain religious texts. I believe that it should be unlawful to violate the rights or safety of others even if your right to express your religion is nullified by this amendment.

Should their not also be a national more-or-less agreement to protect citizens from discrimination based on gender and race? People will be able to improve their conditions and truly change companies which give lower wages to people based on gender or race if cases about discrimination can be taken to the supreme court.

... And if you want to see the barriers against this, look up the ERA.

The Gentleman:
... And if you want to see the barriers against this, look up the ERA.

...Well dang. I did some more research about this topic and I realize that my idea far too...far reaching. We still need to take a tiny step, which is very sad. I had thought that equal rights had come very far, but since it still had not been ratified...

Hang on a moment, I do not understand why the escapist community would be against my proposal though. Right now the majority of people chose "No" on the poll. Are people against it because it is too idealistic and thus it probably would not pass?

NightmareWarden:

The Gentleman:
... And if you want to see the barriers against this, look up the ERA.

...Well dang. I did some more research about this topic and I realize that my idea far too...far reaching. We still need to take a tiny step, which is very sad. I had thought that equal rights had come very far, but since it still had not been ratified...

Hang on a moment, I do not understand why the escapist community would be against my proposal though. Right now the majority of people chose "No" on the poll. Are people against it because it is too idealistic and thus it probably would not pass?

The reason the ERA never happened was simply because it would have created far more problems than it would solve.

It's too broad. You could make the legal argument that a person in a wheelchair has been unlawfully discriminated against becoming a fireman/other job that requires a lot of activity, as they can't run due to their condition. The general idea is a good one though.

Changing the culture is always more effective than making a law.

Also, the government has no right to be poking in that.
Haha you have blue eyes! - Arrested.

Spartan1362:
Changing the culture is always more effective than making a law.

You don't acknowledge that changing the law can have an effect on the culture?

Well generally I like this amendment idea but we would have to be careful to word it right since "natural characteristics" cover a wide range for possibilities. The way you've worded it, you couldn't discriminate against people with disorders so not only could a physically disabled person get a physically demanding job, but also those with mental disorders couldn't be discriminated against. You'd have no choice but accept an diagnosed sociopath as a police officer, or an openly paedophilic elementary school teacher as long as neither had broken any laws, since both are "natural characteristics".

Mortai Gravesend:

Spartan1362:
Changing the culture is always more effective than making a law.

You don't acknowledge that changing the law can have an effect on the culture?

Sure it can, but if it does it generally comes with a shitload of propaganda. E.g. Seatbelts.

Decent idea, far too broadly worded as others have pointed out.

There are, in many cases, legitimate reasons to discriminate against people with specific "natural" attributes, such as low intelligence or poor physical ability. An employer should never be forced to hire someone that simply cannot effectively do the job in question.

Look hard enough, and you can even find jobs where discriminating based on sex or race is reasonable. (mostly in the entertainment industry)

Big_Willie_Styles:
The reason the ERA never happened was simply because it would have created far more problems than it would solve.

Therefore it was ratified by the state of Texas?
Therefore it has been worded into the constitutions of 14 of the sates who origionally rattified it?

Ain't caused them many problems... meh.

I'm not American and live in a country where the insane don't get into power structure (that often).

Oh dear, I goofed and forgot to add one important point which people have pointed out. I meant to add that it is unlawful to discriminate against a party for natural characteristics so long as it does not affect the ability of anyone in the workplace. I messed up on this draft of it. I understand that it is broad and the intention was to make the "natural characteristics" phrase broad so that it can consist of many relevant points now and in the future.

Esotera:
It's too broad. You could make the legal argument that a person in a wheelchair has been unlawfully discriminated against becoming a fireman/other job that requires a lot of activity, as they can't run due to their condition. The general idea is a good one though.

And this law is not meant to protect people with that condition. I admit that I goofed and should have added the above section earlier, however in this case "discriminating" against someone due to a condition like that is not unlawful because it has a severe impact on his/her safety as well as the extent to which a team can rely on him or her in a dangerous situation. A paraplegic will not be as capable of dealing with the circumstances the majority of firemen would be able to handle. At least the vast majority of the time, anyway. For that example, it would be a risk to the safety of all involved.

Heronblade:
Decent idea, far too broadly worded as others have pointed out.

There are, in many cases, legitimate reasons to discriminate against people with specific "natural" attributes, such as low intelligence or poor physical ability. An employer should never be forced to hire someone that simply cannot effectively do the job in question.

Look hard enough, and you can even find jobs where discriminating based on sex or race is reasonable. (mostly in the entertainment industry)

One's strength and intelligence can be improved upon however and are not set in stone upon one's birth so they would not qualify. I also intended the term "natural characteristics" to be broad and I understand that I am being difficult when attempting to explain what I understand would classify as such. Perhaps I will need to work on the wording of it, however the wording of all of the current amendments are, for the most part, simple and to the point. "Natural characteristics" can also be a term which can be interpreted in the future so long as it is properly explained Now what it means.

We have enough headaches based on interpretation of what the founding fathers meant or had in mind with the first ten amendments so I believe it is important to find a proper wording of this amendment.

NightmareWarden:

Heronblade:
Decent idea, far too broadly worded as others have pointed out.

There are, in many cases, legitimate reasons to discriminate against people with specific "natural" attributes, such as low intelligence or poor physical ability. An employer should never be forced to hire someone that simply cannot effectively do the job in question.

Look hard enough, and you can even find jobs where discriminating based on sex or race is reasonable. (mostly in the entertainment industry)

One's strength and intelligence can be improved upon however and are not set in stone upon one's birth so they would not qualify. I also intended the term "natural characteristics" to be broad and I understand that I am being difficult when attempting to explain what I understand would classify as such. Perhaps I will need to work on the wording of it, however the wording of all of the current amendments are, for the most part, simple and to the point. "Natural characteristics" can also be a term which can be interpreted in the future so long as it is properly explained Now what it means.

We have enough headaches based on interpretation of what the founding fathers meant or had in mind with the first ten amendments so I believe it is important to find a proper wording of this amendment.

Yes and no

Intelligence factors are approximately 70% genetic. So far as we can tell, your maximum mental aptitude is set at conception, with environmental factors such as diet during the growth cycle and education determining how far below that maximum you actually are. People also have very little ability to change their basic intelligence (at least not for the better) once adolescence is complete, although tweaking the brain's equivalent of operating software to run better is certainly possible.

When speaking of physical aptitude, I was not specifically referring to strength, but I'm still going to have to disagree with you on that score. While FAR more malleable than intelligence, there are still limitations to how far one can push their body, and many of those limitations are set from birth. For example, I grew up into a heavyset body with the basic build of a football lineman, while my sister is a runner, with long legs and whipcord muscles.

So long as I don't let my physical condition completely deteriorate, I will always have an advantage over her when it comes to both lower and upper body strength almost no matter how hard she works at it. The reverse is true when it comes to tasks requiring particular agility and speed.

And then of course, there are physical attributes of the type I was actually referring to. Deformations, crippling injuries, and any other physical quality outside of the control of the person in question that very well might be valid reason to refuse employment.

With that said, I notice your amendment to your proposal and will withdraw that objection. Don't worry, there's another one on the way!

The other issue I find with proposals like this is in terms of application. We already have a great deal of issues with people claiming discrimination falsely, give their claims federal backing, and you will screw a lot of innocent people over, even as you help legitimate claims that weren't listened to before.

Spartan1362:
Sure it can, but if it does it generally comes with a shitload of propaganda. E.g. Seatbelts.

So seatbelts are inherently wrong because the government said we had to wear them and teach our children to do the same?

Big_Willie_Styles:

The reason the ERA never happened was simply because it would have created far more problems than it would solve.

You mean ruin the "traditional family" and make women get a false sense of their place? Because that was what the opposition's argument was. And even more hilarious, this opposition was led by a woman.

Lilani:

Spartan1362:
Sure it can, but if it does it generally comes with a shitload of propaganda. E.g. Seatbelts.

So seatbelts are inherently wrong because the government said we had to wear them and teach our children to do the same?

When did I even remotely say that?

No no no no no no no no no motherfucking no on each an every level no it is an absolutely hideous idea that in no way encompasses freedom bur rather is a mean to demolish it entirely.

Anti-Discrimination is utterly subject at best and massively and intentionally malicious at worst. Anything can be offensive for any reason this also means ant thing can be discriminatory for any reason. I feel I have the right to offend and this to discriminate again ant person or group of persons in America. Does it mean i am just a dick? sure about 50-70% of the time it does but about 10-20% of the time it is used to make people accept something that is flat out wrong or even malicious with the remainder of the time it simply be a matter of statistics like a company with no Hispanics in a 50 mile radius hiring no Hispanics then being viewed as discrimination because not one of their 25 employes is not his Hispanic despite the simple fact is is just that none live near the business.

NightmareWarden:

The Gentleman:
... And if you want to see the barriers against this, look up the ERA.

...Well dang. I did some more research about this topic and I realize that my idea far too...far reaching. We still need to take a tiny step, which is very sad. I had thought that equal rights had come very far, but since it still had not been ratified...

Hang on a moment, I do not understand why the escapist community would be against my proposal though. Right now the majority of people chose "No" on the poll. Are people against it because it is too idealistic and thus it probably would not pass?

While the Equal Rights Amendment never got past as an amendment, everything you want could be argued to be included in the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment, as the Supreme Court has ruled laws that discriminate are unconstitutional. Though gender (which typically covers LGBT) falls under a weaker scrutiny than race that allows for exceptions, which is why men and women can still have their bathrooms segregated. There been cases to argue the gender clause should be stronger and weaker, but no supreme court decision, so this can still vary with state.

As for having anti-discrimination laws work on companies, Title VII or the Civil Rights Act of 1964 exists to do that. It doesn't quite protect everyone everywhere, but other acts have extend its power over the years. Harder than most people might think to sue a company over this, but this usually give most companies pause before broadcasting targeted unfair treatment to a particular group.

The president is in place for the Constitution to interpret that act already exists, if the right case and right Supreme Court judge this to be so. On the other hand, Supreme Courts loves to wait for a Legislative decision on this matters, so they might hold back extending the law until such an act gets ratified. Keep pushing, one day it might make a difference.

Big_Willie_Styles:
The reason the ERA never happened was simply because it would have created far more problems than it would solve.

I doubt it. The only relevant (non-procedural) text was "Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex."

How on earth could that ever create a problem for anyone who wasn't a douchebag out to discriminate people to begin with?

Unsurprisingly, radical Christian cultists who consider women inferior (same people running the current GOP War on Women campaign) are listed as the main sabotagers of the ERA amendment. Their religious agenda needed keeping discrimination of women and others on religious grounds legal.

Esotera:
It's too broad. You could make the legal argument that a person in a wheelchair has been unlawfully discriminated against becoming a fireman/other job that requires a lot of activity, as they can't run due to their condition. The general idea is a good one though.

Nonsense, the simplest way to do this sort of thing is a blanket statement law, with rational exemptions added, as it kind of is over here in the UK; for example, an employer cannot discriminate against a disabled person(they still try, but it's supposedly illegal), but it's not considered discriminatory to refuse to hire someone for a job they are not physically capable of doing, such as a wheelchair user seeking to become a Fireman. Once in a while someone, justly or otherwise, attempts to challenge the law as it relates to their own situation through the courts, and within a few years you have a nice solid lump of case law to guide future rulings.

If you go at it piecemeal, making a little law here for the physically disabled, another there for those with serious mental disorders, another for homosexuality, another for this, another for that, all you do is bog yourself down in endless legislation, and provide an opening for fundies, bigots, and opportunistic politicians to seize on their own particular favourite punching bag demographic and fight like buggery to stop it going through.

I find it hilarious, frankly, that a country where the words "inalienable rights" are bandied about as often as "hello" can't bring itself to legally acknowledge the concept that discrimination is wrong.

Magichead:

Nonsense, the simplest way to do this sort of thing is a blanket statement law, with rational exemptions added, as it kind of is over here in the UK; for example, an employer cannot discriminate against a disabled person(they still try, but it's supposedly illegal), but it's not considered discriminatory to refuse to hire someone for a job they are not physically capable of doing, such as a wheelchair user seeking to become a Fireman. Once in a while someone, justly or otherwise, attempts to challenge the law as it relates to their own situation through the courts, and within a few years you have a nice solid lump of case law to guide future rulings.

If you go at it piecemeal, making a little law here for the physically disabled, another there for those with serious mental disorders, another for homosexuality, another for this, another for that, all you do is bog yourself down in endless legislation, and provide an opening for fundies, bigots, and opportunistic politicians to seize on their own particular favourite punching bag demographic and fight like buggery to stop it going through.

I find it hilarious, frankly, that a country where the words "inalienable rights" are bandied about as often as "hello" can't bring itself to legally acknowledge the concept that discrimination is wrong.

I think one general law is better, but was just saying that the draft in the OP didn't actually have any exemption stated. I agree with everything else.

DANEgerous:
No no no no no no no no no motherfucking no on each an every level no it is an absolutely hideous idea that in no way encompasses freedom bur rather is a mean to demolish it entirely.

Anti-Discrimination is utterly subject at best and massively and intentionally malicious at worst. Anything can be offensive for any reason this also means ant thing can be discriminatory for any reason. I feel I have the right to offend and this to discriminate again ant person or group of persons in America. Does it mean i am just a dick? sure about 50-70% of the time it does but about 10-20% of the time it is used to make people accept something that is flat out wrong or even malicious with the remainder of the time it simply be a matter of statistics like a company with no Hispanics in a 50 mile radius hiring no Hispanics then being viewed as discrimination because not one of their 25 employes is not his Hispanic despite the simple fact is is just that none live near the business.

Just because someone finds something offensive does not mean that it is discriminatory. It is not discrimination if it does not affect you or violate your rights. If someone feels that he or she is being discriminated against he or she would take their case to court. Companies would not randomly be called into court because of an racial or gender imbalance in their workforce according to statistics. If a person's traits interfere with his or her ability to do a job properly then it is not unlawful nor is it discrimination; it is simply making a logical calculation rather than a choice.

So let me get this straight (pun only sorta intended): Protects LGB individuals from discrimination, but not T individuals. Or are trans people protected so long as they don't have sex reassignment surgery?

Polarity27:
So let me get this straight (pun only sorta intended): Protects LGB individuals from discrimination, but not T individuals. Or are trans people protected so long as they don't have sex reassignment surgery?

Probably the latter. I get the feeling that wasn't an intended consequence of his wording, though.

Blablahb:

Big_Willie_Styles:
The reason the ERA never happened was simply because it would have created far more problems than it would solve.

I doubt it. The only relevant (non-procedural) text was "Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex."

How on earth could that ever create a problem for anyone who wasn't a douchebag out to discriminate people to begin with?

Unsurprisingly, radical Christian cultists who consider women inferior (same people running the current GOP War on Women campaign) are listed as the main sabotagers of the ERA amendment. Their religious agenda needed keeping discrimination of women and others on religious grounds legal.

And you know who were the biggest advocates? The lobbying arm of the trial lawyers. They were chomping at the bit to sue under it.

And that language is very ambiguous and would have to be thoroughly defined through litigation that would eventually reach the SCOTUS.

You really think the GOP are conducting a war on women? Pass the Kool Aid, bro, you've had fair too much for an entire lifetime.

It sounds nice but creates plenty of unintended consequences that most can see if they think about it. The Americans with Disabilities Act created a ton of them, the biggest of which was a ton of litigation, like the recent ridiculous one against Chipotle (that the DOJ somehow agreed with.)

Warforger:

Big_Willie_Styles:

The reason the ERA never happened was simply because it would have created far more problems than it would solve.

You mean ruin the "traditional family" and make women get a false sense of their place? Because that was what the opposition's argument was. And even more hilarious, this opposition was led by a woman.

Making women less likely to be hired, for one, due to the threat of litigation an employer assumes by hiring a female. See, a man gets laughed out of most courts if he sues based on sexual discrimination (remember that "South Park" episode with Ike and the teacher, yeah, the police officers' immediate response.) The same thing happened with the ADA: Less handicapped people got hired because employers just don't want to deal with the headache of hiring a person they will likely be sued by if the employer fired them (i.e. they can never fire them.) Also, a bunch of needless litigation by lawyers who are sick individuals.

Comando96:

Big_Willie_Styles:
The reason the ERA never happened was simply because it would have created far more problems than it would solve.

Therefore it was ratified by the state of Texas?
Therefore it has been worded into the constitutions of 14 of the sates who origionally rattified it?

Ain't caused them many problems... meh.

I'm not American and live in a country where the insane don't get into power structure (that often).

Yeah, I'll take that to heart, Mr. I-Have-A-Country-With-A-State-Subsidized-Monarchy-For-Tourism-Reasons. Totally not crazy government there, bro.

Have you never heard of Gloria Allred? The billions spent on sexual harassment lawsuits? Welcome to the '90s, good Doctor.

Big_Willie_Styles:
nd you know who were the biggest advocates? The lobbying arm of the trial lawyers. They were chomping at the bit to sue under it.

In a country with gender discrimination as rampant as in the US, that should come as no surprise. But I agree this indeed further illustrates the need for such a constitutional amendment to be created.

Big_Willie_Styles:
And that language is very ambiguous

I just cited the only non-procedural bit, it was a single sentence and it doesn't get much clearer than that: No discrimination, no discriminating laws.

Big_Willie_Styles:
You really think the GOP are conducting a war on women?

I don't think, I know. Everyone who's had his eyes open to the various scandals lately knows that. De facto banning abortion, but promoting teenage pregnancy, opposing discrimination, heck even opposing aid to victims of sexual abuse and domestic violence. Their actions speak for themselves.

Besides, I grew up among religious nutjobs of the type that form the evangelical part of the republican party. If there's one thing I can accurately judge for what is based on what they say, it's religious nutjobs, because, quite frankly, I used to be one myself and have seen their ideology from the inside.


Good example: the congressional hearing on insurance-paid contraceptives, an essential part of healthcare that enables the US to escape medieval ages in terms of family planning. A well-known nutjob commentator called a woman who testified with both facts and examples from reality a slut, because in his twisted mind she 'wanted the government to pay for having sex with anyone'.

Wait, let's rewind that a moment and consider just how mentally ill that commentator is.

He's saying basically that the only way to not be a slut and a whore is to abstain untill an arranged marriage, and then having 5-20 children (because that's what you get if you never use contraceptives). He also thinks he as a person is entitled to judge and control who all women have sex with and when.

Now that's pretty deranged. The idea that all other people are your personal property over which you are entitled to control is slavery, even a little worse than slavery as slaves sometimes had laws governing an extremely limited form of sovereignty over their bodies, while that religious conservative wants full control over all women. And the idea that women are only allowed to marry and then become nothing more than fully dependant breeders is also something that's been dying for over half a century, and is dead in just about any rational place.

Yet, a religious commentator that disturbed and warped has a huge pull in the radical parts of the GOP.

This would not work in a country where people define discrimination as "things that upset me" or "not getting my way"

 

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