Diversity beneficial to city, state
Re: Council resolution proposal
Sheridan needs to re-invent itself if it wants to continue the vibrant, forward-thinking atmosphere it has come to enjoy. Like it or not, we live in a globalized society of increasing diversity and tolerance.
For example, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2014 there were more than 20 million children under 5 years old living in the U.S., and 50.2 percent of them were racial and ethnic minorities. And a 2011 study by the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law estimated there are 9 million LGBT persons in the U.S. We don’t want Sheridan to be left behind in the global marketplace of business and ideas by not expressing openness and tolerance for the whole variety of citizens who live in this great country.
One way our community can assert its friendliness and tolerance and counteract the increasingly divisive world we live in is to take the bold step of a value statement. The recently proposed non-discrimination resolution is one such statement. It is not a law, just a statement of values, a statement which asserts “the policy of the city (of Sheridan) is to reject discrimination of any kind and to respect the inherent worth of every person, without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, handicap, sex, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, veteran status, or political affiliation.”
We have the opportunity to counteract the negative reputation of being in the state where Matthew Shepherd was brutally murdered and, more recently, where elected officials make insensitive statements about sexual diversity. We have the opportunity to open our doors to diverse families and businesses who want to live here and mutually prosper. If Gillette can pass a similar resolution, so can we.