Letter: North Dakota GOP continues to reveal its homophobic intentions

Anti-trans athlete bill is another example of the homophobic underpinnings of the North Dakota GOP.

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Last summer, it was revealed that the North Dakota GOP had written into their platform a resolution so egregious that when it came to light leaders ran away from it and no one would admit who wrote it. Resolution 31 had language so hateful and misinformed about members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community that both Gov. Burgum and Republican Party head Rick Berg bemoaned its existence even though they would have had to approve it. Although it was removed from the ND GOP web page, it was not removed from the platform.

Further evidence of this horrible homophobic underpinnings of the party presents itself in HB1298, the anti-trans athlete bill. One of its key sponsors is Rep. Ben Koppelman, a West Fargo Republican. No matter how they try to spin it, this bill accomplishes exactly what it sets out to do: to vilify and demonize one of the most vulnerable group of students. Along the way, it again paints the state of North Dakota as so hateful it will willingly commit a group of students to castigation, aiding and abetting a rise in suicides.

This bill came out of committee yesterday with a do pass on a 8-5 vote. Credit is given to those three members of the Republican Party who voted against this even though it appears to go against the design of their own party.

HB1298 now goes to the floor of the North Dakota House. Watch how your Republican super majority vote on this bill.

Finally, one has to question what-out-of state interests is behind such horrible legislation. There can be no coincidence that similar bills are coming forward in Montana, Minnesota and South Dakota.


Barry Nelson lives in Fargo.

This letter does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Forum's editorial board nor Forum ownership.

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