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None of your business: Census shouldn't ask about sex

EDITORIAL
March 30. 2017 6:52PM


Imagine you are sitting at home, minding your own business when the doorbell rings.

“Hello, we’re from the federal government, and we have a few questions about your sex life. Are you gay?”

The U.S. Census Bureau on Tuesday removed a question about sexual orientation from the proposed 2020 Census form that had appeared on an earlier online draft.

The Census Bureau has never asked Americans such questions during the decennial census or the annual American Community Survey. The agency issued a statement saying that the question was inadvertently included in the draft, and was not being considered for 2020.

Surely, gay rights groups applauded the Trump administration for respecting the privacy of Americans regarding their sexual orientation and gender identity.

Not even close.

Gay rights groups are complaining that gay Americans will not be counted. That’s nonsense.

The Census should count every American. But the federal government should neither know, nor care, about every American’s sexual orientation. Such information is in no way relevant to the purpose of the Census.

Counting every American every 10 years is a fundamental — and constitutional — duty of the federal government. We should not be adding questions to the survey that are none of the government’s business.

Nor should we politicize the questions we ask in an attempt to open up a new front in the culture wars.


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