Omaha City Councilman Ben Gray was not having right wing radio host Tom Becka's "silliness" during a recent debate about the Nebraska city's LGBT-inclusive anti-bias laws, laws Gray successfully lobbied to passage. Becka claims those laws are unnecessary because, according to either his willful ignorance or desire to be a Limbaugh-like blowhard, discrimination doesn't exist.
Despite mountains of evidence presented during hearings on the law, Becka claims, "You have no proof, there's no evidence of people losing their jobs because of their sexuality."
Here is more of that conversation, via AKSARENT:
Becka: …There are people with agendas and politicians that will use it for votes when the reality is there's not a problem. There's all sorts of laws that are passed all the time by both sides, the left and the right of feel-good legislation, of laws that aren't necessary but because somebody has an agenda and some special group wants to get something through even though there's no need for the law. I mean, you'd agree with that, right?
Gray: Not necessarily, no. I mean that there's things that go on because people have different agendas. They do it all the time, but… I didn't do this because I have a specific agenda.
Becka: But yet you have no proof, there's no evidence of people losing their jobs because of their sexuality.
Gray: Yeah, there's been proof and documentation that was presented at the public hearing.
Becka: Well, how many? …[When] the other side isn't there to defend themselves, I'm not sure that qualifies, do you?
Gray: You know… we passed a law… There has been documentation that there is discrimination that exists. It exists at all levels from the time you're a child to the time you're an adult. That has been documented and pointed out by several studies and several organizations. So, to assume that it doesn't exist would be purely… it would be stupid, quite frankly, because there's enough evidence that says that it is.
Becka: …It [discrimination] doesn't stop with the government forcing something on businesses.
Gray: Well, most businesses already have it as a policy…
Becka: Well then, why do you need the law?
Gray: For those that don't.
Becka: Because we can't allow people to make their own free choices?
Becka then tries to push the argument into a more extreme direction, claiming that if people like Gray believe in anti-discrimination laws, they should start advocating for overweight or unattractive people, at which point Gray says Becka is being too "silly" and hangs up, like any person with common sense would do.
Here is a link to the audio, which begins around the 3:55 mark, if you want to take a listen for yourself.