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Governor Newsom Signs New Bill to Stop LGBTQ Discrimination

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By Augustine Mbam - - 5 Mins Read

The governor of California, Gavin Newsom, has signed a new controversial bill that outlaws the discrimination against LGBTQ people in sex crime convictions. The new bill signed by the governor supports LGBTQ activities. It will mandate judges to determine their case whenever they are involved in sexual crime instead of an automatic judgment. 

The name of the newly passed bill is Senate Bill 145, and it will change how many sexual cases will be treated in California. The new bill didn't go down well with many people in the state, as many argue that those convicted for having any sexual relation with a minor should be automatically convicted. 

Before the new bill was passed, those involved in any sexual intercourse with a minor between the age of 14 and older were automatically classified under the sexual offender register. This also applies to cases where an adult is older than the minor by ten years and above. However, the new bill by Governor Gavin Newsom has reversed this law. The new bill only allows judges to pass sentences on whether a minor of 14 years and above was sexually harassed. 

The New Bill Receives So Many Backlash

Newsom celebrates with LGBTQ community SF Pride 2015 (Flickr)

The new bill passed by the California legislature and signed by Governor Gavin Newsom has generated a lot of controversies, and the opposition party has seized the opportunity to criticize the actions of the democrats. The Republicans in the state Legislature and the supporters of President Trump's Candidacy have labelled the new bill as a support for paedophiles. 

However, the Democrats have argued that the new bill protects and supports LGBTQ activities; they also mentioned that it was to remove the discrimination that gay people face. 

It seems like many of the politicians in the Democratic Party were aware of the backlash they would receive after they passed the bill. Before the bill was passed and signed by the California governor, many people within the Democratic Party had warned of the potential controversy it might generate. "This is one of those bills you will take a political hit for. But we also know that it’s righteous and just. This is the time to step up," Assemblyman Chad Mayes said. 

Democrats Aren't Succumbing to the Backlash 

Despite the offensive words and backlash many of the Democrats have received because of the new bill, it seems the controversy doesn't move them. 

The author of the new bill, Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco), said the bill intends to " address cases in which two people close in age — an 18-year-old and 17-year-old dating in high school, for example — are in a sexual relationship. The 18-year-old can still be convicted of a sex offence but should not automatically be registered as a sex offender. This lifelong designation impedes finding employment, a place to live and other necessities of life."

"It’s appalling that in 2020, California continues to discriminate against LGBTQ people by mandating that LGBTQ young people be placed on the sex offender registry in situations where straight people aren’t required to be placed on the registry,” Wiener said in a statement Friday night. “SB 145 simply ends that discrimination by treating LGBTQ young people the exact same way that straight young people have been treated since 1944," Sen. Scott Wiener added.