Announcement prompts reflection

Attorney General addresses unrest in North Carolina.

Announcement+prompts+reflection

Kristina Cary, Managing Editor

Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s announcement last Monday was not only notable for its declaration that the Department of Justice plans to sue North Carolina over a recently approved law, but also for the powerful message it sent to the transgender community.

The law, signed into effect two months ago, struck down an anti-discrimination provision in a Charlotte, North Carolina ordinance and ordered that transgender individuals use public restrooms in accordance to the gender they were assigned at birth.

In addition to the conflict the legislation presents with federal law prohibiting gender identity-based discrimination, Lynch asserted that it represented government-sponsored discrimination.

Lynch took the opportunity to address the transgender community directly, stating that our nation has overcome discrimination before and that they had support from the Department of Justice.

“Some of you have lived freely for decades,” Lynch said. “Others of you are still wondering how you can possibly live the lives you were born to lead. But no matter how isolated or scared you may feel today, the Department of Justice and the entire Obama Administration wants you to know that we see you; we stand with you; and we will do everything we can to protect you going forward.”

I plan to obtain a degree in government in college and have been working toward that future for my entire high school career. In the midst of college applications and resumé building, I felt that I partially lost sight of my initial goal in that career choice.

Lynch’s remarks reminded me of why I originally decided to become involved in politics — to help protect individuals’ rights, and ensure they feel safe, respected, and most importantly heard.

“This country was founded on a promise of equal rights for all, and we have always managed to move closer to that promise, little by little, one day at a time,” Lynch said. “It may not be easy — but we’ll get there together.”

Looking back at my fours years in high school, I have come to realize that this idea of listening to different individuals’ voices before taking steps to lend support to their causes directly connects with Goal Three of the Network of Sacred Heart Schools, which calls for students to develop a social awareness that impels to action.

Before taking action, we must listen to the words and stories of others — a concept both exemplified by Lynch’s words and our school’s teachings.

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