Is Texas Going Blue?

Austin is not the only progressive city in Texas. In early September, the city council of San Antonio passed a non-discrimination ordinance (NDO) that puts the LGBT community on equal footing when it comes to city contracts such as housing and employment, making it illegal to discriminate against any resident or visitor of San Antonio based on their sexual orientation.

Other Texas cities include Austin, Dallas, Houston, and Fort Worth have already enacted this type of non-discrimination ordinance which could be a clear sign that perhaps Texas is beginning to turn a little blue.

Community group CAUSA led the charge to institute the initiative.Their efforts were clearly successful. The NDO passed with city council voting eight to three in favor of the ordinance after weeks of debate between the Christian community and the LGBT community.

“The whole experience was really intense. I did not realize the extent of homophobia in this city,” Saakred, CAUSA's communications leader, said. “To walk outside the city council chambers and see the American flag with crosses and Bibles, with people shouting at us from everywhere was intense.”

This homophobia has created tension between those who voted in favor of the NDO and conservative leaders around the state of Texas who are preparing for re-election in the spring. Todd Staples, a Republican candidate running for lieutenant governor expressed his opposition after the NDO passed. “I consider this an attempt to impose a liberal value system over the objection of millions of Texans,” Mr. Staples said. “It actually discriminates against those with deeply held religious views by pushing this agenda to the extreme.”

Unfortunately for Mr. Staples, Texas is actually on the verge of becoming a liberal state. After Governor Rick Perry (R) announced he would no longer run for governor reports emerged today that hero filibuster-er Wendy Davis (D) will run. While it is definitely going to be a challenge to get a Democrat into the governor seat in Texas, progressives are optimistic that Texas is climbing the liberal hill, slowly but surely.


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Maribel Hermosillo

Maribel Hermosillo is a contributor for PolicyMic's Identities column covering racial justice and feminism. Maribel has written for Rh Reality Check, Strong Families, The San Antonio Current, Yes Ma’am, Brown Queen and The Arts United of San Antonio. Maribel graduated from the University of Texas at San Antonio with a focus on American Studies and Mexican-American Studies. Maribel's experience as a first generation queer woman of color deeply informs her writing and poetry. Maribel likes to take long reflective walks on mountains, hills and wooded areas. She resides in San Antonio, Texas.

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