The end of 2018 seems to be the time in which people's pasts come back to bite them. First Kevin Hart's resurfaced homophobic tweets from 2010 caused him to step down from hosting the Oscar's and now a meeting to discuss a $15.00 minimum wage had to be postponed because of homophobic blog posts made in 2002 by the would-be speaker, Joseph Sabia, according to CNBC.
The push for a federal minimum wage of $15.00 an hour has been a longstanding issue between Democrats and Republicans. As such, House Republicans set up a hearing to discuss the potential downsides of a $15.00 minimum wage, and chose San Diego State Economics Professor Joseph Sabia to testify on the effects of raising the wage.
However, a 2002 blog post made by Sabia was discovered in which he says that "homosexual acts" should be taxed and regulated. The post reads:
In gay sex, we have an activity that is clearly leading to disastrous health consequences. What rational person would engage in this sort of activity? There is only one solution — let's tax it.
All sex can lead to "disastrous health consequences" and "rational" people have been engaging in gay sex since people have been around. Not to mentioned implementing a gay sex tax would be extremely difficult. Anyway, here is the continuation of the post:
In all seriousness, the bottom line is this — the government has no business interfering in the lives of smokers, fatties, or gays. In America, each citizen ought to be free to choose the risks he is willing to take and the potential rewards (or costs) he may receive. He should be free to make choices that could lead to heart disease, diabetes, or HIV. And if these bad outcomes materialize, he should not look to the public dole for relief.
As he so eloquently puts it, "smokers, fatties, and gays" should not receive government assistance because they are putting themselves at risk for heart disease, diabetes, and HIV by being themselves. There are more than one way to contract any of the three things he mentioned, not just from smoking, being heavy, or being gay.
He did apologize for the post, however, saying "I regret the hurtful and disrespectful language I used as a satirical college opinion writer 20 years ago." Make of that what you will. I don't know him personally so I can't say with great certainty that he's changed, but a lot can happen in almost seventeen years. He also rejects the accusations of homophobia, as he said that he's "a gay man in a long-term, committed relationship."
Democrat California Representative Mark Takano said in response to the blog post that it is shameful and disgraceful that the GOP invited Sabia to be a witness and that the posts should automatically disqualify him as speaking as an expert and that the postponing of the hearing was the wrong move by the Republicans, as they should have just disavowed Sabia and continued with the hearing. The hearing would have been the first minimum wage hearing that Republicans have held in eight years.
Raising the federal minimum wage is something that should definitely be discussed between the two parties. Was postponing it the only option? And did Sabia really change? We can only speculate.