IRS Accused of Discriminately Targeting Conservative Groups

The Internal Revenue Service, the agency responsible for collecting taxes and enforcing tax laws, is facing intense scrutiny after it was revealed that it has been unfairly targeting audits and investigations at conservative groups.

IRS controversyThe issue comes from certain kinds of groups who can apply for tax-exempt status. Many of these groups are allowed to hide their donor lists and are used to raise money for politicians, meaning an individual can use them to contribute more money to an election campaign than normally allowed by law. The IRS’s goal was to do something to fight this practice.

However, it faltered because its investigations targeted primarily conservative Tea Party organizations, potentially having an effect on election results and shaking national confidence in how tax laws are enforced.

Two high-ranking IRS officials have resigned because of this scandal and congressional hearings are being held to get to the bottom of what happened. One of the main focal points will be finding exactly whose idea it was to target conservative groups.

Women Face Pregnancy Discrimination Despite Federal Protections

After being laid off, a woman has filed a lawsuit against her former employer claiming her firing was unfair and discriminatory. The suit alleges that she was fired not because of downsizing, but as retaliation for taking maternity leave twice in as many years.

The Family and Medical Leave Act guarantees women unpaid maternity leave and further state protections in New Hampshire allow women to return to their position (or a sufficiently similar one) when that leave ends. The woman in the suit took maternity leave in 2009 after receiving a good performance review months before. Shortly after she put in the request for maternity leave for her second pregnancy in early 2011, her performance review score fell dramatically under the reasoning that she had become unreliable. pregnancy discrimination

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission reports that pregnancy discrimination cases have risen over the past 15 years nationwide. This presents a clear problem that needs creative solutions that are mutually beneficial and fair to families and employers.

Despite all of the laws in place designed to protect people from discrimination, it continues to be a prevalent problem across the nation.

Proposed Bill to Purge Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation

While many states have laws that prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation, the majority of them, as well as the federal government, have no such law. While many would argue that the Civil Rights Act applies to situations where gay and lesbian individuals are discriminated against, but the law only protects from discrimination based on factors such as race, gender, and religion.

discrimination based on sexual orientationThere are hundreds of documented studies where gays and lesbians have been discriminated against at work based on their sexual orientation.

Legislation is being introduced in both the Senate and House to combat this discrimination. Many corporations already have protections of their own in place, but a federal law would help improve the situation.

This bill should have very little problem gaining support in Congress as the overall public opinion becomes increasingly gay-friendly.