A Leading Perspective

Pragmatic insights for the leader in you

A City Divided

I have an ego, I have a temper, I am emotional and I often over-react.  I talk too much, I listen too little, I’m a bit selfish and I struggle with forgiveness.  However, I am trying to be a decent human, a great HR professional and a thoughtful leader.


I have wrestled with writing a post on this issue but today, I decided to share my thoughts.


Anchorage is a city divided.  On Tuesday, we will vote on a proposed change to our Municipal Code.


Prop. 5 states:
Shall the current Municipal Code sections providing legal
protections against discrimination on the basis of race,
color, sex, religion, national origin, marital status, age,
physical disability, and mental disability be amended to include
protections on the basis of sexual orientation or transgender identity?


Half of Anchorage strongly opposes this.  Placards communicating messages ranging from anti-gay to pro-religious freedoms are found on our corners, billboards, bumpers, etc.

The other half of Anchorage strongly supports it.  They, too, have placards strewn around town, all communicating messages about equality and justice.


I support the amendment. 
How can I not?



As a thoughtful leader, how can I believe it is honorable to pass judgment on someone who is different than me?

As a thoughtful leader, how can I claim I deserve more than someone else who is equally qualified…whether it be for a job, a loan, housing, etc.?

As a thoughtful leader, how can I set a good example if I communicate that my own thoughts or my personal preferences are superior to others?

I cannot.



As a great HR professional, how can I support the idea of withholding employment or benefits from someone simply because of who they choose to love?

As a great HR professional, how can I encourage inclusion and diversity in our workplaces to allow for the best possible perspectives of ideas, insight and solutions when I know many are being rejected?

As a great HR professional, how can I expect my staff, my managers, our employees, etc. to treat each other with mutual respect when I know it is currently “legal” to do otherwise to many?

I cannot.



As a decent human, how can I ask others to accept me if I do not reciprocate?

As a decent human, how can I assert that the privilege of choice is only reserved for the majority of us?

As a decent human, how can I encourage hatefulness?

As a decent human, how can I remain silent when injustice is done to others?

I cannot.


Thank you for reading my post.
I am well aware there are many out there who feel
as passionately about this issue as I do but who oppose
what I support.  I can respect that and sincerely hope we can
agree to disagree.


If you choose to share your thoughts, please know
I welcome hearing from you.


AcceptanceAnti-DiscriminationDiscriminationEmployee RelationsEqualityFairnessHostile Work EnvironmentInclusionLeadershipRole of HRValue

Heather Kinzie • April 1, 2012

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