A coalition of state attorneys general have written a letter addressed to President Joe Biden and his administration calling out two of its recently enacted policies under the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the U.S. Department of Education that the attorneys claim "threaten to impose unlawful regulatory guidance upon nearly every employer and educational facility in our states and throughout the country."
The letter was led by Tennessee Attorney General & Reporter Herbert H. Slatery III and signed by 20 other attorney generals from states such as Alabama, Georgia, Idaho, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Kentucky, Ohio, Louisiana, Mississippi, and more.
According to Christian Headlines, the 21 attorneys are accusing the Biden administration of doing more than what is required to enact the Supreme Court's Bostock v. Clayton County decision. Judges ruled in the 2020 decision to ban discrimination in employment based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
The EEOC recently released new guidelines on how workplaces should implement the Bostock decision, while the DOE issued a Notice of Interpretation on how the Bostock decision will affect schools across the country.
Furthermore, the 21 attorneys argue that the Biden administration's EEOC guidance "appears to ignore" two out of the three "protections provided to religious employers," which are Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which "express statutory exception for religious organizations" and the First Amendment's protections of "the employment relationship between a religious institution and its ministers." The Supreme Court's decision on Bostock dictates that it is "a statutory decision and cannot overrule the First Amendment's guarantees of religious liberty," the letter said.
The 21 attorneys also said that the Biden administration's EEOC infringes on one's free speech rights by implementing restrictions on pronouns, as the EEOC websites orders that the "use of pronouns or names that are inconsistent with an individual's gender identity" can be "considered harassment" in "certain circumstances." They say this is an overreach on the side of the EEOC.
"Bostock did not provide any basis for a claim that using biologically accurate pronouns could violate the law," the 21 attorneys argued. "To the contrary, the First Amendment protects the right to ascribe pronouns to others based on their sex. With respect to pronouns, the EEOC's guidance comes across as an effort to leverage the authority of the federal government to chill protected speech disfavored by your administration."
The 21 attorneys also said in the letter that the U.S. DOE is forsaking America's religious freedoms and free speech rights through its Notice of Interpretation, which according to the Roetzel law firm was released on June 16.
Not only was the guidance written "to make clear that the Department interprets Title IX's prohibition on sex discrimination to encompass discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity," it also confirms several of the Biden administration's Executive Orders issued on gender discrimination earlier this year. The 21 attorneys believe it "[flouts] required procedures and the rule of law and [serves] only to sow confusion among regulated entities."