Small towns in Trump country support LGBT rights


Defying stereotypes in the U.S. over LGBT rights – Wheeling, West Virginia approved LGBT protections for its citizens. The town is among a recent wave – in many parts of the country that voted for Donald Trump – to embrace these protections.

“We told people this wasn’t a bad place,” said business owner Lujano, 53, who was in the audience when the ordinance passed in late December. “Finally, this confirmed it.”

About 50 U.S. municipalities in 15 states have added LGBT nondiscrimination measures since 2015, when same-sex marriage was legalized nationwide. More than half of those cities and towns are located in counties that backed Trump in November’s election, and all are in states he won, a Reuters analysis found.

In Indiana, Vice President Mike Pence’s hometown of Columbus saw an all-Republican city council unanimously pass LGBT protections after he signed as governor a religion law in 2015 that was widely decried as discriminatory and prompted some conventions to go elsewhere.

“Republicans don’t speak with one voice on this issue,” said Columbus Mayor Jim Lienhoop. “In a small town, you really do live with the laws that you create. It makes it all a little bit more real that we see some people – we actually know them – who might be affected.”

Across the United States, 19 states have LGBT nondiscrimination protections that typically guard against being fired from jobs, kicked out of housing or denied services in places like restaurants or hotels. Reuters found that about four out of five cities with populations greater than 250,000 are covered with at least some protections.

via Yahoo News