For lifelong Houstonians Randall and Jose, a routine cab ride home turned dangerous when their driver pulled over late at night on the side of the freeway and demanded that the men exit. Randall and Jose, who recently became engaged to marry after five years of dating, shared a brief kiss, which enraged the driver. They got out of the car, walked along the side of the highway, under an interstate bridge and across a busy road and waited for a separate cab to take them home.
“There are so many states that do protect LGBTQ people,” Randall said, referencing the 19 states with comprehensive nondiscrimination laws. “It’s embarrassing that Texas does not. It would be nice to know that if I tried to take legal action against discrimination like this, I would have the law on my side.” Because neither Texas nor Houston – the nation’s third-largest city – have LGBTQ-inclusive nondiscrimination laws on the books, Randall and Jose were left without any options. While they thankfully arrived home safely that night, no one should be stranded because of who they are.