VIDEO: John Oliver Stumps for Federal Equal Rights Law; Outs Candidates for Anti-LGBT Stance
On Sunday’s “Last Week Tonight” show, John Oliver took on LGBT discrimination, pointing out that 31 states still do not have anti-discrimination laws in place and saying this makes it “surprisingly easy for people to be fired, evicted or refused service just because they are gay.”
“So, while federal law may guarantee a gay couple’s right to get married, it offers precisely zero guarantees about their rights to do the things that normally follow that, like signing a lease on an apartment they can’t afford, or conducting tense discussions about finances in the brightly lit tapas restaurant of their choosing or marching into any bank and applying for a loan to get Brenda’s stupid cupcakes for dogs idea off the ground,” the host added.
Citing three recent instances of discrimination — the case of a couple denied service at a Texas restaurant called Big Earl’s, the case of a Texas children’s social services worker fired for being gay and a Michigan same-sex couple whose pediatrician refused to treat their baby — Oliver said it was “amazing that any of those stories are taking place in this day and age.”
He saved his special ire for the Colorado baker who refused to create a wedding cake for a gay couple.
“That baker denied service to a gay couple in 2012, citing his belief that providing them with a wedding cake would offend his definition of traditional marriage,” Oliver said. “But that’s a little hard to square with the fact that he allegedly had no problem providing a cake for a wedding between two dogs.”
The comedian ended his monologue with a plea for the federal Equality Act, a bill currently making its way through Congress that adds LGBT protections to the Civil Rights Act, the Fair Housing Act and others.
The show reached out to the presidential candidates to see if they were in favor of the act, asking: “Would you support passage of a federal law or laws that prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, specifically in the areas of employment, housing, public accommodation, and access to credit?
Only four candidates responded. Take a look at the video below to find out which ones didn’t. And guess which candidate came back with, “We’ll pass. Thanks.”
Posted by Jenna BerbeoWait, before you go…
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