Many Americans were really (and rightfully) optimistic after the recent Supreme Court ruling that legalized same-sex marriage on a national scale, but they also recognized there was still work to be done to ensure full rights for LGBTQ folks in the eyes of the law.
This week, it seems the wheels of progress are once again in motion: In a 3-2 vote, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ruled that under the 1964 Civil Rights Act, workplace discrimination based on your sexual orientation is "sex discrimination," which the law forbids.
That's kind of a big deal. Here's a gif to celebrate:
If you're like, "that's cool, I love progress! But WTF is the EEOC?" no worries, I'll explain. The EEOC helps to create laws that bar employers from discriminating against people for various reasons, including race, sex and religious beliefs.
It's important to note that the EEOC isn't the same thing as the Supreme Court, and therefore, their decision isn't considered a national law -- yet. As Buzzfeed reporter Chris Geidner notes, "While only the Supreme Court could issue a definitive ruling on the interpretation, EEOC decisions are given significant deference by federal courts."
If the Supreme Court agrees with the EEOC's decision, it'll mean the legal answer to sexual orientation discrimination has been right under our noses for over 50 years. It's time for the nose of America to wake up and smell the coffee . . . of progress.