The…fair maidens at Jezebel and their base are freaking out today after discovering that the proposed list of questions for the 2020 national census have apparently deliberately excluded questions about sexual orientation and gender identity.
Jezebel and the something called the LGBTQ Task Force frets that this is a deliberate move in order to deny vital statistics to groups who use them to craft policy and lobbying tactics.
The census helps to shape and define policy supporting different demographics, and it’s very difficult to do that when certain demographics aren’t included. That may be why a question about “sexual orientation and gender identity” has mysteriously disappeared from 2020’s proposed list.
Today, the Trump Administration has taken yet another step to deny LGBTQ people freedom, justice, and equity, by choosing to exclude us from the 2020 Census and American Community Survey. LGBTQ people are not counted on the Census—no data is collected on sexual orientation or gender identity. Information from these surveys helps the government to enforce federal laws like the Violence Against Women Act and the Fair Housing Act and to determine how to allocate resources like housing supports and food stamps. If the government doesn’t know how many LGBTQ people live in a community, how can it do its job to ensure we’re getting fair and adequate access to the rights, protections and services we need?
The nail-biting over the revelation is yet another symptom of what can only be called Trump Derangement Syndrome. While there are many legitimate complaints about President Trump, the left (and many on the right) seem bound and determined to search for any clue about Trump’s determination to commit genocide. Not only will they believe it, but even when including proof in their own stories that he is indeed not heading towards total genocide they still print the stories as true.
It is a tragic symptom of how social media has turned previously curious people into headline readers.
Headline readers are people who get all of their information from the salacious headline we bloggers provide in order to get your clicks, but who never read past the first paragraph, if at all.
If readers had bothered to peruse the first body of the story they would have found that Jezebel and the original reporter at the Washington Blade go on to admit that the questions have never been included in the national census. Other federal surveys have included them over the years, but never the census and there’s no proof the Trump administration intends to eliminate the question from future non-census federal surveys.
It is literally much ado about nothing and what is worse – the reporters admit it. They just do it toward the end of the story in hopes you’ll never get there.
Neither the U.S. Census, nor the American Community Survey, had ever included questions about sexual orientation or transgender status. However, during the Obama years, other federal surveys included questions seeking to identify responders who are LGBT.
With efforts to streamline the decennial U.S. Census, the addition of LGBT questions would have been unlikely. The inclusion of LGBT categories in the report may indicate those categories were initially planned for the more detailed annual American Community Survey, then taken away.
Did you catch that? Let me explain. This is a planned proposal for the 2020 survey. The Blade is positing that administrators may simply have done a copy and paste of a different federal survey that is more expansive and submitted that. When they noticed the error, they corrected. The Blade itself concedes that the Trump administration may even actually be planning to add the questions to a federal survey that has never contained them before.
This headline could have read “Trump Champions LGBTQ Community, Demands Orientation and Identity Questions Be Added to National Survey”
This is why no one trusts the media anymore. We’d all love to just get the information and make a judgment but with the rise of op ed journalism (of which I am admittedly a part of) the judgments are too often made for us before we even get past the headline.
The only objective informational reporting one can find these days is at your local level, local stations. If you are sincerely concerned with getting the whole truth of a situation before you decide how upset you should be then the only way to make sure you have the full story is to read the full story and then form an opinion.
Regarding the census story, the very people spreading outrage are the ones admitting there was no story here.