Why can't Dan Onorato be content to exaggerate his role in passing this legislation? He jumped on board the anti-discrimination bandwagon months after the wagon was rolling and clearly missed the opportunity to be a leader on this issue. Still, he's not one to miss the opportunity to *claim* he was a leader.
But, I do take issue with his factual inaccuracies.
Taking a Strong Stand Against Discrimination
Last week in Allegheny County, Dan signed the region’s strongest anti-discrimination ban into law – sending a clear message that discrimination against anybody is wrong, always.
The new law bans discrimination on the basis of gender, race, mental or physical disability, religion, ethnicity, national origin, age, educational status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression.
All of our citizens need to know that they are fully protected when it comes to employment, housing and public accommodations. This law doesn’t infringe on anyone’s religious rights, but it does make sure that everyone feels welcome to work here, raise a family here and be part of our community.
We already covered the hair splitting about taking a strong stand. There are two factual errors.
First, this is not the region's strongest ban. The City ban is stronger. The County ban is weakened by the Philadelphia Amendment which the City of Brotherly Love is trying to drop. Definitely not strong and could be very embarrassing for Danny's progressive makeover for the Eastern Dems.
Second, this ordinance does not say that discrimination is always wrong or that citizens are fully protected. It does say that you can discriminate in the name of Jesus if that's what he whispers in your ear to do. You can potentially collect a few public dollars while doing so. People are not fully protected or even pretty much protected. The loophole isn't just about ensuring the Lutheran church doesn't have a fey organist, but also covers charitable organizations and fraternal organizations. So no gay Elks for you, my friends. Would that be a Gelk? Elkay?
My point is that Onorato should take credit for getting on board and signing the legislation. I'm sure he worked behind the scenes to help secure the 8 votes once he publicly supported the ordinance.
What he still hasn't done is provide domestic partner benefits to County employees. That's the tragic lining to this silver cloud. In one short summer, he could bring the County up to the City of Pittsburgh standard of diversity and inclusiveness.