State Rep. Bill Zedler Wants to Shut Down Those Grody LGBT Centers at Texas Colleges

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The LGBT Resource Center at Texas A&M University, like its cousins at the University of Texas and the University of Houston, is an innocuous arm of school bureaucracy that offers an array of resources to gay and transgendered students. There is a guest speaker program, a lending library, networking opportunities, LGBT awareness events, information on counseling, connections to advocacy groups both on- and off-campus. Like we said: innocuous.

But State Rep. Bill Zedler, the Arlington Republican, seems to think these organizations are more akin to San Francisco bathhouses circa 1980. As the Voice noted yesterday, Zedler filed an amendment to the Senate budget that would cut funding for "Gender and Sexuality Centers and Related Student Centers."

He goes on to explain his reasoning: such centers "support, promote or encourage any behavior that would lead to high risk behavior for AIDS, HIV, Hepatitis B, or any sexually transmitted disease."

In a letter to lawmakers, Resource Center Dallas CEO Cece Cox calls Zedler's proposal "mean-spirited and discriminatory."

"This amendment has no public health value," Cox writes. "It does not reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS or any other sexually transmitted disease. It exists for one reason and one reason only: to target college student resource centers simply because the centers provide services to the LGBT community."

Sort of like that bill in the A&M student senate, which is up for debate this evening, that would allow students to opt out of funding LGBT student groups.

Zedler, if he would ever return our calls, would likely argue that rates of HIV and other STDs are disproportionately high among gay men. The CDC says as much. But the CDC also says that infection in gay individuals, just as in straight ones, can be prevented through safe sexual practices and avoidance of drugs, suggesting that the type of education and support provided by campus LGBT resource centers might actually help reduce infection rates. Further undermining Zedler's argument, the agency notes that "homophobia, stigma, and discrimination" elevate the risk of physical and mental health problems.

But Zedler's never been one to let facts or reason get in the way of a ridiculous legislative idea. He's just not very good at getting his fellow lawmakers to sign on. For the sake of gay and transgendered college kids, here's hoping that doesn't change.

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49 comments
Ms. Moxie
Ms. Moxie

Don't be so hard on Don you guys, he's been cranky since the Emanication Proclamation was issued. It was so hard for him to learn to pick his own cotton! Poor baby! Someone call him a waaaaambulance!

animas
animas

As a taxpayer, I don't want to fund any "on or off"campus social, religious,  or other similar organization.  If you want it, fund it yourself.  Zedler is perfectly correct in this matter.  (I wouldn't return your nutty non-constituent calls either.)

Brian Nesbitt
Brian Nesbitt

>>Those Grody LGBT Centers<<

My second favorite line.  And unless the hour is taking a toll on my editing skills, no grammatical or typographical errors!  Woot!

Scott Hall
Scott Hall

No special privileges for weirdos.

Susan Durham
Susan Durham

I think, instead of shutting down LGBT centers, we should put up some MYOB centers, as well as some shut up centers.

Sara Ashley Mesler
Sara Ashley Mesler

of course he does...our state government lives to embarrass those of us that have common sense and decency...right down to good old Guvnah

Nathan McLain
Nathan McLain

If he's so worried about the spread of STDs or the behavior that leads to STDs, then it's time to shut down the entire Greek system.

Julia Vargas
Julia Vargas

Lol well then, now that it's off your chest... :p

David Burrows
David Burrows

Sorry Julia. I've been waiting to make a pager joke for weeks

John Paul Salas
John Paul Salas

This guy is a joke and I appreciate that more politician are showing there bigotry on human rights and freedom for all.. I know who not to vote for!

Julia Vargas
Julia Vargas

Why is everyone speaking to Don? If you ignore him he will only be talking to himself.

David Burrows
David Burrows

Don. Check your pager. You're in the wrong century.

Katy Gorman
Katy Gorman

Wow This is Don North guy seems like a real prize. I wonder who's the lucky lady was that got to snatch him up

Ambelleina Warwillow
Ambelleina Warwillow

Straight white guys got special treatment for the first 200+ years, let someone else have a chance on the merry-go-round now.

Carolina Leiva
Carolina Leiva

So this politic bases his statements on old stereotypes relating gays to risky sexual behaviors? And I thought this was 2013. Jeeesh!

Tyler Atnip
Tyler Atnip

LGBT obviously face different diversity than straight students. While it SHOULD be equal and everyone should have the same trauma in college that's simply not the case OR the reason he wants them shut down! ... "He goes on to explain his reasoning: such centers "support, promote or encourage any behavior that would lead to high risk behavior for AIDS, HIV, Hepatitis B, or any sexually transmitted disease." " obviously this statement is made out of ignorance and falsities!

Mike Barron
Mike Barron

I have an idea: lets separate blacks and whites, too. And better yet, lets have blacks do hard labor for us. Because, you know, while we're moving backwards...

Deepak Mahbubani
Deepak Mahbubani

Did you put your name on the list prior to mine? Crazies first ;)

Don North
Don North

you should Deepak, you're on the watch list

Deepak Mahbubani
Deepak Mahbubani

There's centers for psychological assistance, they don't discriminate - regardless of how straight or white you are.

Don North
Don North

what about the heterosexual centers, where are they? oh that's right no special treatment for straight white guys

DeathBreath
DeathBreath

I become quite amused when people who oppose LGBT feign concern.  What a load of shit, no pun intended.  Sounds like this fucker has closet issues.

Anna_Merlan
Anna_Merlan

"Zedler, if he would ever return our calls."

Gosh, that would be something, wouldn't it? 

CitzenKim
CitzenKim

So what's it going to be, Texas?  I call to the educated, the open-minded, the people who can make this state great.  Are we going to sit back and let our government be selected by only the idiots, the uneducated, the racists?  Are we going to continue to fill our legislature and governor's office with the likes of Zedler of whom we read these ridiculous statements and policies on a daily basis?  Are we going to pull up stakes and be run out of Texas as Jews were run out of 30's Germany?  Or are we going to get off our asses and start working for reasonable candidates at election time?  I'll admit I am the laziest of the lazy-asses.  But I'm motivated, I'm going to get to work!

JackJett
JackJett

My favorite line.....if he would ever return phone calls.........Bigoted extremist can only play softball when it comes to the media.  Fox & The 700 Club will not challenge him.   Nor will any local TV news.  Texas is one of those states where there is still an upside to bigotry.

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

By his stupid-ass logic the Greek system should be shut down for the same damn reasons.

Chuck_Schick
Chuck_Schick

Of course - because abstinence-only education has been so effective for the young people in Texas.

Ms. Moxie
Ms. Moxie

He goes on to explain his reasoning: such centers "support, promote or encourage any behavior that would lead to high risk behavior for AIDS, HIV, Hepatitis B, or any sexually transmitted disease." That's college, you redneck, bigot!

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

Doesn't this twit have more pressing problems to worry about as legislator than closing down a gay group?  Sheesh!

animas
animas

Putin  has a Polonium addiction issue.

MisterMean
MisterMean

@Joni Espinoza As an undertaker Zedler perhaps he like them to take a cold bath and keep perfectly still.

Ms. Moxie
Ms. Moxie

@Nathan McLain Or college campuses.

animas
animas

Actually, he didn't make any "statements" .The Observer completely made it up: "Zedler, if he would return any of our phone calls would likely argue...etc " What a complete crock!

Ms. Moxie
Ms. Moxie

@Don North Awwww, you're so right! Too often in this country the plight of the privileged, white male goes unrecognized! Keep fighting the good fight!

Ms. Moxie
Ms. Moxie

@Myrna.Minkoff-Katz No. He has to file bills like this to distract his constituency from his heart's true desires. Magicians call this "misdirection."

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