ENDA would overturn the historical basis of protected class status by adding “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to civil rights law. While every other federally protected class embodies three standards: an obvious, immutable characteristic; a history of discrimination evidenced by economic disenfranchisement; and political powerlessness, “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” falls under none of these criteria.
An employer with a moral or religious belief opposed to homosexuality or bisexuality would be forced to lay down their rights and convictions at the office door. While the U.S. Constitution provides religious freedom for all Americans, ENDA codifies discrimination against people who oppose homosexual and “transgender” lifestyles based on religious principles.
ENDA will undermine the institution of marriage and jeopardize the federal Defense of Marriage Act by pronouncing traditional sexual morality a form of discrimination in America. This legislation will lead to a glut of litigation and lead inevitably to employers being required to offer marriage-like benefits to homosexual employees.
ENDA expands civil rights protections on the vague basis of perception. Because ENDA covers “real or perceived” “sexual orientation,” an employee or potential employee could sue an employer for his or her perception of the employee’s “sexual orientation.” Yet unlike the currently protected classes of race, age and gender in employment, “sexual orientation” is behavioral and not scientifically verifiable. Furthermore, “sexual orientation” is undefined in the ENDA legislation.
ENDA will place the federal government in direct opposition to the beliefs of all major faiths in America regarding sexuality. The U.S. government will, in effect, become an adversary to moral sexuality and religious conviction.