Last week, my 16-year-old daughter came home from school with an assignment for her English class to dictate a defense on how the 13th and 14th amendments to the Constitution directly contradict the Dred Scott v. Sanford decision made in 1857 by the Supreme Court. As a reminder, Dred Scott, a slave in Missouri, sued for his freedom because he had lived for a time in a “free” territory. The court ruled against him. Ultimately, however, this poorly made decision eventually contributed to the election of Abraham Lincoln and to the Civil War. We’ve come a long way baby. Or have we?

Yesterday I received a phone call from an agent who had just shown my listing. I had texted her previously for feedback. When she called, she explained that her feedback would have been far too long and detailed for a text, so she thought she better just call and talk to me directly.

My initial thought was, “Great! They probably loved it and want to write an offer!” My elation did in fact last several seconds, as she declared exactly that. Her clients did like the home. They were very interested in writing an offer; until…

Allow me to pause here for a moment and remind our readers that we have now happened upon the 21st century. It has taken this country a very long time, but I feel like we have finally come to a fairly comprehensive understanding of that phrase in the second paragraph of the United States Declaration of Independence which states that, “All men are created equal.” Now there is no sense in quibbling about the semantics of the word “men.” We all know that the interpretation is, “all people.”

Either way, I prefer to live in my own reality that everyone is, especially now, on the same page about this. Yet, alas, I have recently been schooled that I am mistaken in this aspect.

To continue with my account; the agent expounded on the details of their experience. She explained that her clients were discussing how excited they were about the home, the lot, the location, etc., when my client’s next-door neighbor appeared on the scene. She immediately chose to add her unsolicited advice to the conversation about the home and neighborhood. After she informed them of her rendition of the neighborhood gossip, she proceeded to ask them a question, “Are you a racially mixed couple?”

Okay, just give me one sentence to rant about this question. How on this entire planet, is that relevant to anything? HOLY CRAP ON A STICK! Do people still really notice that?

This young couple were much more accommodating with their reply than I would have been. “Yes, we are.”

“Well, you don’t want to move here then.”

Well, she was right. They certainly don’t now.

In 1988, the Utah Fair Housing Act was enacted. It’s a darn shame it took that long to put this law into place. Basically, the Utah and Federal Fair Housing laws state that you have the right to rent, purchase, or finance housing without discrimination based on your race, color, sex, religion, national origin, disability, source of income, familial status, sexual orientation, or gender identity.

Sounds to me like something that was put into place by our country’s founders with that second paragraph of the declaration. It’s a darn shame we had to spell out in writing what the definition of “all men” is again. One would think we could have figured that out by now.

Jen Kirchhoefer is an associate broker and Realtor. She can be reached at 801-645-2134 or

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