Stop Trying to be Happy


Jared Herzog

Jared Herzog

The Denton Feminist & Queer Collective (DFQC), an LGBTQ advocate group condemn the recently passed SB17 bill, dubbing it “discriminatory.”

Now on its way to the Texas House, the bill allows licensed professionals to withhold service if it violates their religious beliefs. Peace officers and medical practitioners must still provide emergency services despite any spiritual convictions. 

DFQC, based in Denton, says it provides an avenue for said professionals to discriminate freely under the law. 

The activist group’s co-founder Megan Morrissey says the SB17 bill not only affects her, but also her daughter.

“…as a queer couple with a daughter, these are the things we worry about all the time. I mean, daycare [professionals] are licensed,” Morrissey said at the group meeting last Friday.

Jared Herzog

Jared Herzog

Co-founder Anna Marsden added “not just queer people, this bill could affect people of various religious beliefs…people are concerned about Muslim folks [as well].”

The bill is also making its rounds on the national stage—particularly with pop idol, Taylor Swift, who donated $113K to the Tennessee Equality Project—an LGBTQ rights organization opposing the SB17 bill along with a catalogue of similar legislation. One such bill called “the bathroom bill” adds “bathrooms and locker rooms to a list of public places where someone can be charged with indecent exposure,” according to Billboard. Many believe it also opens the door for transgender discrimination.

DFQC meets in Denton the first Friday of every month to execute a “fonebanking” campaign to voice their disdain to Texas lawmakers. Members each call and leave a message with their state representatives hoping to nudge them in a different direction.  

Group leaders says they welcome anyone willing to help or are in need of support. The event page on their Facebook reads, “Help us call your representatives …and enjoy some camaraderie while we work toward progress.” Their mission statement says the group intends to “affect meaningful change in our communities at the local, state, and national level.”

Marsden says she also gives free hugs to anyone in need of support.

Jared HerzogComment