Republican leadership at the Minnesota Capitol have outlined their priorities for the upcoming legislative session — roads and tax relief appear to be the priorities. But an anti-LGBT Republican wants to put the focus on forcing schools, businesses, and other places of accommodation to make life difficult for transgender Minnesotans. In a letter to colleagues on Sunday, Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen asked for support for a bill he plans to introduce that will ban anyone in the marketplace from providing transgender-inclusive facilities.
Calling it a “critically important issue” facing the Minnesota Legislature, Gruenhagen sent out a copy of his most recent email to constituents with the following preface:
I have forwarded you a recent copy of my email update. It deals with the concept of “transgenderism”. As the update indicates I have a female constituent who is being directly affected by this. My greatest concern however, is for my children and grandchildren along with the safety and protection of all Mn children. I also have sympathy for those individuals who have bought the lie of “transgenderism” and are in vain trying to change their gender. I am beseeching each of you to search your soul and hopefully conclude that we on a bipartisan basis can pass legislation to protect our children’s privacy and safety. I cannot believe that the majority of us in either party agree that having children of opposite gender shower, bathe, and use restrooms together is a positive step in our culture. I also, have a letter from the President of the American College of Pediatricians that I will forward separately outlining the damage of teaching gender fluidity to children. Finally, I have legislation that has been peer reviewed by a national legal organization that in their legal opinion will protect adults as well as children from using public facilities simultaneously.
Thank you in advance for your consideration on this critically important issue.
Gruenhagen’s email was sent to all staff and legislators at the Capitol.
Gruenhagen hinted at introducing such a bill last fall. Last week, he penned a letter to the editor of two newspapers trying to rally support for anti-transgender legislation (as well as touting the idea that LGB people can become straight with therapy).
These latest efforts are part of a larger pattern for Gruenhagen. In 2011, he co-founded the Pro-Family Forum, formerly the Pro-Marriage Amendment Forum, along with “former homosexual” Kevin Peterson (In 2013, Gruenhagen announced his “former homosexual” friend on the floor of the Minnesota House as that body was taking up marriage equality).
The Pro-Family Forum held events around the state in support of a failed constitution amendment to ban marriage equality. The group also tried to block anti-bullying legislation with a bizarre video claiming that HIV is transmitted in sweat, and claimed credit for blocking a bill that would prohibit licensed therapists from trying to change the sexual orientation or gender identity of a minor.
Gruenhagen’s group placed an billboard near Elk River last year that urged gays and lesbians to seek out “conversion therapy.”
Here’s Gruenhagen’s message to colleagues: