Although monumental work has been done by civil rights leaders, past and present, to correct the injustices of institutional racism in society, there is much work to be done to ensure that America's disheartening history of racism comes to an end. Friends of Intelligent Democracy supports:
- ● Eliminating racial discrimination within the criminal justice system and police departments through collaboration with local and state law enforcement agencies, and activist communities across the country. (see Criminal Justice Reform page)
- ● Addressing historic racism often forgotten in history textbooks included in public school curriculum.
- ● Removing Confederate monuments and landmarks from public spaces and melting them down to create new monuments to true American heroes.
- ● Classifying the Ku Klux Klan and other white supremacy groups identified by the FBI and Southern Poverty Law Center as domestic terror groups, therefore shutting them down.
- ● Classifying lynching as a federal hate crime.
- ● Creating a task force across executive branch agencies, including the Department of Commerce, Department of Justice, and Department of Education that seeks to end systemic oppression in housing, education, employment, healthcare, job opportunities, etc. by eliminating policies that are proven to be discriminatory.
Executive Director Charlie Panfil is a proud bisexual member of the LGBTQ+ community and understands the importance of equality for the community each day. States with prejudiced governors and state legislatures have worked to strip rights from same-sex couples and the LGBTQ+ community. Friends of Intelligent Democracy supports:
- ● Banning conversion therapy nationwide.
- ● Guaranteeing adoption for LGBTQ+ parents.
- ● Banning workplace and hiring discrimination against LGBTQ+ people.
- ● Preventing business owners from refusing service to LGBTQ+ people.
- ● Signing the Equality Act into law.
- ● Amending the Fair Housing Act (Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968) to include sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes.
- ● Creating programs that help LGBTQ+ youth that are homeless or in toxioc households.
- ● Holding abusive parents legally and financially accountable for their hateful actions towards their LGBTQ+ children.
- ● Banning surgery on intersex babies where doctors make decisions that they have no right to make.
Equality for Transgender People
Gender identity has consistently been ignored or undermined at all levels of government. From state level “bathroom bills” that perpetuate a false narrative about these communities to the current federal government’s refusal to allow members of these groups from serving in the military, these actions have been and should continue to qualify as discrimination under the 14th Amendment, and as such the laws should reflect this legitimate expression of identity. Friends of Intelligent Democracy supports:
- ● Making it law that transgender people can use the bathroom of their choice.
- ● Allowing transgender people to serve in the military. Any person brave enough to serve this country should be allowed to.
- ● Expanding Medicare and Medicaid coverage to include transition-related surgeries.
- ● Expanding hate crime laws to include gender identity.
Equality for People with Disabilities
Despite the landmark Americans With Disabilities Act and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act having been passed nearly 30 years ago, there is still more work that must be done to promote the equality of Americans with disabilities. According to the Department of Labor, the unemployment rate for those with disabilities has remained twice that of the population at large, and many students with learning disabilities find themselves in separate classrooms without access to the educational and extracurricular opportunities that they are entitled to. Friends of Intelligent Democracy supports:
- ● Strict enforcement of the ADA and IDEA.
- ● Providing incentives for teachers to gain specialized training in teaching students with physical and mental disabilities.
- ● Withholding taxpayer dollars from public projects and universities that are not ADA compliant.
It took women almost 140 years to gain the right to vote and it should not take another 140 years for gender equality in the United States. People of any gender identity should be able to achieve success without the barriers of discrimination.
- ● Making the Paycheck Fairness Act law and mandate that pay discrimination based on gender is illegal and immoral.
- ● Ensuring that women feel safe reporting cases of sexual harassment and assault and guaranteeing that all survivors of sexual assault regardless of gender have access to legal and mental health resources.
- ● Fully funding Title X programs to ensure access to family planning and reproductive healthcare for all Americans.
- ● Codifying Obama administration Title IX guidelines.
- ● Supporting the HALT Act to prevent schools from failing to address gender discrimination and sexual assault on campus.
- ● Ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment.
Friends of Intelligent Democracy has observed an increase in antisemitic rhetoric in the past couple of years, as seen with the rise in neo-Nazi parties as well as the increasingly harmful denial of the holocaust. The need to call out and condemn a vile hatred towards the Jewish people has never been more necessary. We believe that the government should take a stance with those that are being discriminated against instead of taking a passive stance there should be aggressive action taken to protect those in compromising situations.
With the Trump travel ban this country, once again, unearthed dangerous islamophobia that has infested the very core of what the nation stands for. The sentiment has always been present and increased drastically with the attacks of September 11, 2001. By ostracizing Muslim people and spewing hate and vitriol towards them, once again people are disadvantaged for their own beliefs. That is not what we want to stand for, and Friends of Intelligent Democracy supports the communities who are unfairly disadvantaged, and the punishment of those who seek to put anyone at a disadvantage.
Modernizing Our Democracy