The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops sent a letter to the U.S. Senate outlining their opposition to the proposed Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 2013. Going beyond prohibiting unjust discrimination, ENDA, according to the Bishops,
1. lacks an exception for a “bona fide occupational qualification,” which excists for every other category of discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, except for race,
2. lacks a distinction between homosexual inclination and conduct, thus affirming and protecting extramarital sexual conduct,
3. supports the redefinition of marriage, as state-level laws like ENDA have been invoked in state court decisions finding marriage discriminatory or irrational,
4. rejects the biological basis of gender by defining “gender identity” as something people may choose at variance with their biological sex, and
5. threatens religious liberty by punishing as discrimination the religious or moral disapproval of same-sex seual conduct, while protecting only some religious employers. (Read letter here)
In Florida, homosexual advocates not deterred by the 2008 Constitutional amendment preserving traditional marriage are preparing their own ENDA-like legislation during the next session. Former sexual-activist-turned-state-legislator, Joe Saunders hosted a press conference yesterday announcing pro-LGBTQ legislation, Florida Competitive Workforce Act HB 239/SB 348.
The Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops has not released a statement about this proposed legislation.