Letter to the Editor: Ending LGBT discrimination not the same as ‘getting carried away

“The LGBT community is not the only community with rights that need

I wish this were true. I wish the LGBT community HAD their rights and
that we could be in the business of protecting them as well as the
rights of every other marginalized community. However, that is not the

The fact is that in the state of Michigan, lesbian, gay, bisexual and
transgender individuals are not protected under our Eliot-Larsen Civil
Rights Act. This means that LGBT people are not protected from either
housing or job discrimination. Additionally, our hate crimes law
excludes protections based on sexual orientation and gender
identity/expression. In Michigan, not only can same-sex parents not
adopt, we have a constitutional amendment which bans marriage equality.

The author asks us “not to get carried away” when it comes to LGBT
“rights” (the rights that do not exist). That is a request often
made by those who enjoy privilege in our society… those who have their
rights. To ask individuals of a minority community “not to get carried
away” is to ask them to suffer in silence and to believe that their
inequality does not impact the society in which we live.

We must remember Dr. King’s words “Injustice anywhere is a threat
to justice everywhere” and remember that when one of us is diminished,
we are all diminished. Only then will we be truly keeping “the
‘equal’ in equal rights.”

Colette Seguin Beighley
Director, LGBT Resource Center