NY Times op-ed: Supreme Court decision on labour unions was ‘worst LGBT ruling’ this year
WASHINGTON, D.C., June 28, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) -- While most pro-homosexual activists fixate on the Supreme Court’s recent actions in favor of a Christian baker and florist as the objects of their ire, two writers argued in the New York Times this week that the court’s latest union ruling is the real danger.
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court struck down an Illinois law forcing public-sector employees to pay union dues regardless of whether they wanted to join or opposed their unions’ positions and political spending.
“Compelling individuals to mouth support for views they find objectionable violates that cardinal constitutional command,” Justice Samuel Alito wrote in his majority opinion. “Compelling a person to subsidize the speech of other private speakers raises similar First Amendment concerns.”
In an op-ed decrying the decision as “This Term’s Worst L.G.B.T. Ruling,” former New York University professor Miriam Frank and Harvard Law student Jared Odessky write that the 5-4 decision “will have immediate and lasting implications for the livelihoods of queer people.”
The authors first lay out how the decision is likely to “drain organized labor’s already diminished coffers,” noting that 22 states currently allow unions to collect fees, and that the ruling will also affect private-sector unions since so many unions in both spheres share the same parent organization.
“State and local governments employ an estimated one million people who identify as L.G.B.T.,” the authors write. Because 29 states do not have laws identifying LGBT as a specific category for nondiscrimination purposes, and because non-union workers in the states that do still have to sign arbitration clauses promising they won’t pursue certain grievances in court, unions are critical to advancing homosexual or transgender interests.
“Unions have long been ahead of the curve on L.G.B.T. issues,” Frank and Odessky write. “Through collective bargaining agreements with employers, union activists were pioneers of nondiscrimination protections, domestic partner benefits and transgender-inclusive health care coverage that became models for other contracts as well as public policy.”
The article goes on to detail how unionized LGBT activists won gains such as recognition for “spouse equivalents” in employee health plans and coverage and protection for sex-reassignment surgery. They also how labor unions themselves contributed significantly, through millions of dollars of campaign donations as well as amicus briefs in key legal fights, to the defeat of laws recognizing marriage as a man-woman union and protecting states’ right not to recognize same-sex “marriage.”
“For several years, the L.G.B.T. rights movement has felt almost unstoppable, as marriage equality became the law of the land and nondiscrimination efforts steadily progressed,” the authors conclude. “Masterpiece Cakeshop broke the winning streak, and with Janus we sustain another hard loss.”
The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), the losing side in this week’s ruling, has donated more than $5 million to Democratic candidates and left-wing groups in the 2018 election cycle, including For Our Future and American Bridge 21st Century.
The United Auto Workers (UAW), American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), Service Employees International Union (SEIU), AFSCME, and other top unions all endorsed same-sex “marriage” years before the Supreme Court mandated its recognition,
The National Education Association, which is also a heavy political spender, has passed a variety of resolutions endorsing transgender ideology, while the AFL-CIO pledged to organize for transgender workers and fought against North Carolina’s law allowing businesses to keep biological men out of women’s restrooms.