Multiple Academy Award and Emmy winner Sally Field has been a fierce advocate for LGBTQ rights, especially since she spoke publicly about her gay son Sam Greisman at a Human Rights Campaign event in 2012. Now she and Greisman appearing in a video together extolling the virtues of the Equality Act and just why the country needs it.
In a video for HRC, Field and Greisman chat back and forth via a video call about his being gay and how the Equality Act could impact so many American lives if Congress were to pass it.
The legislation, introduced in Congress earlier this month, would amend federal law to provide a wide range of protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. It would ban discrimination not only in employment but in housing, credit, public accommodations, education, federal financial assistance, and federal jury service.
“Sam’s journey was a different one that his older brothers’. Being with him, watching him finally be able to be all that nature intended him to be…” Field says in the video. “It was not an easy road for him. He wanted to be like his big brothers and nature had given him other gifts.”
Greisman notes that having grown up in Los Angeles, where there are protections for LGBTQ people, he hasn’t faced discrimination like people in cities and states where there are none.
Field adds that despite there being protections in Los Angeles, her son faced pressure for being gay.
“Society was telling that you weren’t going to be a sportscaster, which was your absolute dream job,” Field says. “And there was no reason that you couldn’t have done it. You still could do that if you wanted to.”
“We need all of Congress and all of our representatives to support this because it sends a huge message to feel that you’re safe and you’re not less than,” Greisman says.
“Letting those kids know that their rights are the same as everybody else and they shouldn’t be discriminated against based on who they are and who they love.”
The bill has bipartisan support with reportedly 230 cosponsors in the House of Representatives and 46 in the Senate. Its passage in the House appears likely, but getting through the Republican-controlled Senate and past Donald Trump will be more of a challenge.
“This is change that isn’t just about the government. It would be the government making such an important move to change how people think altogether,” Field adds before making a vow.
“As long as I am upright, I will fight for this to be — that Sam and everyone’s children and grandchildren and sisters and brothers will be protected in every state of the United States,” she says.
Watch the video below.
— Sally Field (@sally_field) March 25, 2019