Texas Rep. Rick Miller (R) has introduced legislation that would prevent municipalities in the Lone Star State from enacting protections for LGBTs. Joining a plethora of Red States in the wake of the shameful Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) law in Indiana, Texas is now poised to legalize discrimination against people based on their sexual orientation.
The bill would undo any and all anti-discrimination laws and ordinances throughout the state, making Texas one of the un-friendliest states in the union to gay people.
The bill isn’t surprising, as this is Texas we’re talking about and Miller is a party-line Republican. What is surprising is that Miller’s son, Beau, is an openly gay attorney in the state and a staunch adversary of any such law.
Beau took to his Facebook page to urge people to write to his father and let him know how they feel, and to send personal stories of discrimination in an effort to dissuade the older Miller from pursuing the law’s passage.
Beau’s heartfelt message begins:
As many of you know by now, my dad has authored and submitted a bill in the Texas House of Representatives that, if signed into law, would prevent municipalities in Texas from maintaining sexual orientation anti-discrimination laws. While I love my dad very much, I am extremely disappointed by his actions and will do everything I can to prevent that bill, or any such legislation, from becoming law.
I have been in fairly intense talks with my dad and his office about this issue. Although I am hopeful that I can persuade him to agree to not pursue this bill’s advancement, that outcome is far from certain. If anyone would like to help in this effort, I suggest writing to him about yours or a friend’s experience with discrimination and how it felt. To that end, and with full recognition of the deep emotions at play, please do not match hate with hate, or engage in name calling or insults. It does not help. Those type of communications tend to do more harm than good.
Taking the high road, the younger Miller has demonstrated why hate will never win over tolerance and kindness. His post continues to include a poem by Martin Niemöller:
First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Socialist. Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Trade Unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—Because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.
Having thoroughly made his point, Beau then left a personal message for his partner, thanking him for his unconditional love and support. That may have been the best dig possible towards his father, who obviously doesn’t offer the same.