Pastors argue against 'transgender' on human rights ordinance

Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners considers adding 'transgender' to human rights ordinance

MIAMI – About a dozen pastors and a few parishioners on Friday gathered outside Miami-Dade County Commissioner Jean Monestime's office, urging him to vote against adding "transgender" to those covered by the county's human rights ordinance.

Opponents argue that people who want to change their sex -- or pretend to be a member of the opposite sex -- are abnormal and immoral.

"If a grown man or a male is allowed to enter a girl's bathroom, that's not normal," said Rev. Ronald Johnson with Grace & Truth Outreach Ministry. "It's just like, you can't put a left shoe on a right foot. We got to get back to the right things in society."

"Now you so confused you don't know what you are that you've got to go -- you's a woman, you going into the men's bathroom. You's a man, you're going into the women's bathroom," said Elder James Smith with the Apostolic Revival Center. "No, I don't respect that."

Commissioner Sally Heyman believes the estimated 5,000 to 20,000 transgender people living in the county should be mentioned in the human rights ordinance.

"There's no words about bathrooms in this ordinance. It's an expansion of our human rights ordinance," she said.

The Christian Family Coalition is one of the main opponents to the proposed expansion. Members have passed out cards against it, including one showing a threatening, transgender man looking at a girl.

"They (Christian Family Coalition) should be ashamed of themselves, and my -- ironically it's called the 'Christian Family Coalition.' How un-Christian can you get to spread hate?" said Heyman.

In response, the Christian Family Coalition has since released this statement: "Commissioner Sally Heyman publicly embarrases herself again by claiming that bathrooms are not public accomodations.  Heyman should be ashamed of herself for tricking the public with this misleading and discriminatory proposed ordinance."