The Helena non-discrimination ordinance is finally set for passage Monday, December 17th. It will outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation. The final hearing begins at 6pm in the City Commission Chambers on the 3rd floor of the City-County Building.
There is a small snag, however.
While the City Commissioners decided unanimously two weeks ago to move the popular ordinance forward, Commissioner Dick Thweatt added a preposterous amendment, with language that could actually require people to show their genitals before entering certain facilities if there is any doubt as to their gender. Why Thweatt did this I cannot fathom. It’s one of those things that politicians do to try to satisfy everyone, I suppose.
Fortunately, the city has produced a training video. Cowgirl blog has obtained a copy of the video. Here it is:
I propose a substitute amendment. It would simply require all businesses to purchase TSA-style body scanners, at the proprietors’ expense, and staff them with trained operators.
Local businesses should not be alarmed, as the body scanners only cost between $130,000 and $170,000 each. When the body scanners were first installed in our nation’s airports, the public reaction was overwhelmingly positive, so the city can expect much less backlash than if we all had to show our genitals to a city monitor.
We could even include language, to satisfy opponents of the ordinance, that would allow them to download and view each body scan in a private room.
Whether the substitute amendment has legs or not, the commissioners will likely realize on Monday how ridiculous this all is and strip the genital check amendment from the final ordinance–if for no other reason than to prevent themselves from becoming the subject of the next Jon Stewart, Colbert Report, or FoxNews skewering.