Some of the letters in the LGBT community are not feeling so communal if a prominent lesbian activist and Army Staff Sergeant is to be believed.
“I have spent every day of my life since that time advocating for the marginalized and oppressed, especially sexual minorities,” wrote Miriam Ben-Shalom in The Federalist. “I’ve organized rallies, shown up and stood up wherever injustice was allowed to flourish. I’ve twice chained myself to the White House fence and engaged in non-violent civil disobedience to protest the ban on LGB people in the military. I’ve risked jail time and criminal charges on behalf of my brothers and sisters in the LGB community.”
Ben-Shalom was originally honorably discharged from the Army for homosexuality, but was the first person re-instated after such a discharge in 1988, which she describes as one of the proudest moments of her life.
But things aren’t completely hunky-dory for the lesbian activist right now. Though she believes that transgender people deserve respect and ought not to be discriminated against, it is clear that Ben-Shalom thinks the movement has gone too far.
“[I] ought not to be expected to believe that by some magic and lots of surgeries and chemicals that a man can be a woman and a woman a man,” she wrote. “I, and all woman and children, should not have to put up with the shenanigans of those who insist that biology is ‘a social construct’ but gender ‘is innate in a person’ when the exact opposite is true.”
Ironically, Ben-Shalom’s views on the subject are so controversial that she was forced to publish her op-ed in the socially conservative Federalist.
She also knocked the growing trend of parents forcing transgenderism on their children.
“Children should not be experimented upon by infusing them with puberty blockers to keep them from growing up,” she said. “Children should not be operated upon and have body parts removed because they ‘feel’ they are something other than what they are, should not be subjected to a lifetime of ill health because of Big Pharma’s chemicals.”
Ben-Shalom said that lesbian women should not be accused of “transphobia” for refusing to sleep with biological males who “identify” as transgender females, and that the law should not protect transgender females who want to use men’s bathrooms and locker rooms.
“Do you understand now why this is not about trans humans being discriminated against, but is about something much more horrible and revolting: the chemical sterilization of children, the denial of basic human rights to women and children, and the erasure of women? Do you still wonder why we do not want the law to allow such people in our spaces?”
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Appeals Court Refuses to Expunge Joe Arpaio’s Contempt Conviction After Presidential Pardon
A judge isn’t happy about the pardon.
A federal appeals court is refusing to expunge former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpario’s contempt of court conviction, after the sheriff was granted a presidential pardon by President Trump.
Such a legal move is rare if not unprecedented for the recipient of a presidential pardon. Usually federal and state court systems dismiss the convictions of people granted presidential pardon.
Arpaio was convicted of contempt of court in 2017 for refusing to change the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department’s practices after a judge mandated that the agency cease immigration raids.
Three judges of the liberal San Francisco-based 9th Circuit Court upheld a ruling from a lower circuit court refusing to expunge the legal record of Arpaio’s conviction. The move sets new legal precedent for a recipient of a presidential pardon.
Arpaio was a frequent target of Eric Holder and the Obama administration, often coming under intense DOJ scrutiny for the practices of the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Department.
Arpaio ran for the United States Senate in 2018, coming in third in the Republican Primart behind Martha McSally and Kelli Ward. He’s now running for his old position as Maricopa County Sheriff once more at the ripe age of 87.
In any case, presidential pardons have traditionally resulted in dismissal of criminal convictions in federal and state courts. It’s hard to think of the 9th Circuit’s decision to maintain the conviction as anything more than a political slight to President Trump.
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