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Indiana Gov. Pence Signs Law Permitting Gay Discrimination
Governor Mike Pence and his GOP cronies have been forced to "fix" the language in the RFRA "Religious Freedom" Law to state that it is not to be used for discrimination against gays. It was all a big "misunderstanding" by citizens and the media - a "misperception" and "misrepresentation." Gosh darn it all - we just didn't understand! They never meant to discriminate against the gays!
No, not really - they knew exactly what they were doing, but thought it wouldn't have consequences for anyone except the gays. Then all the big businesses and sports teams and entertainers decided to call them out for it, and suddenly Gov. Pence and the rest are pro-Gay.
Republican legislative leaders unveiled their series of changes Thursday morning to the law that triggered intense backlash from businesses, sports associations, pro-LGBT groups and even fiscally-focused conservatives when Pence signed it last week.
The GOP-dominated House and Senate approved a legislative fix, which was added into an unrelated bill, on Thursday, sending it to Pence's desk almost immediately.
Despite last-minute lobbying from conservative groups like Indiana Right to Life to get Pence to veto the fix, the governor signed it Thursday evening.
. . . Eric Miller, the head of Advance America and a powerful lobbyist who stood behind Pence at last week's private bill signing ceremony, said on his website: "Among the things that will happen, Christian bakers, florists and photographers would now be forced by the government to participate in a homosexual wedding or else they would be punished by the government! That's not right!"
I've signed #RFRA clarification bill. Resolving controversy/making clear every person feels welcome & respected in our state is best for IN.— Governor Mike Pence (@GovPenceIN) April 2, 2015
There'll be some who think bill goes too far, some who think it doesn't go far enough. As governor, I must always put the interest of IN 1st— Governor Mike Pence (@GovPenceIN) April 2, 2015
Now that this is behind us, let’s move fwd together w/a renewed commitment to civility & respect that make IN great: http://t.co/AnqnchgM2n— Governor Mike Pence (@GovPenceIN) April 2, 2015
The GOP leaders in the Indiana Legislature want this to be over with forever, but no one will forget the way the country pushed back on this draconian law. Things have fundamentally changed in good old 'Merica. No longer can one of these anti-gay laws be passed without scrutiny. Arkansas backed down and changed their law. Montana decided not to bring their own RFRA law to a vote. This week has been epic in terms of the advancement of gay rights, or at least for letting the bigots in the GOP know how the rest of the country view their antics. And above all, if these red states want to be competitive for the sweet moolah, they cannot count on big business backing their agenda of hate. And that is good news for all of us, gay or straight!
From Jeremy Hooper on Good As You:
They cannot continue to pretend America is on their side. Backlash and pushback like the epic scenes we have witnessed this week do not happen easily or without genuine heart attached. When you have mega brands, mega celebrities, mega politicians, and millions upon millions of Americans rising up in a way that puts a previously wonky topic like RFRA on the front page of every newspaper, on the cover of Time magazine, all over social media, and into water cooler conversation across our states, the changing tide is simply undeniable. In some ways, it's even more of a sign than the consensus support for marriage equality.
. . . They won't be able to keep touting these scenarios of bakers and florists who wish to deny same-sex couples without having white-hot scrutiny on their backs. Let me be clear: they'll keep touting them because they really seem to believe that discriminating in this fashion is something different simply because they say it is. However, the American consciousness has been raised. The idea of discriminating in public accommodation is now a conversation that everyday people are having. And now, when they try to push these situations are going to be reminded of this week's ugliness, reminded of how all involved promised that anti-LGBT discrimination was not going to happened, and reminded of how attempts to slip such discrimination into the American values system manages to unite brands like Walmart, Apple, Google, and the NCAA in fierce opposition.
What would have been better than a week of damage? Not passing this harmful bill in the first place. #RFRA— Jennifer Wagner (@JenniferAWagner) April 2, 2015
Salesforce CEO: We're helping employees move out of Indiana: Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff said Wednesday that h... http://t.co/aXXL1vXz5q— True Finance (@truefinance) April 2, 2015
They didn't "Fix" the "Religious freedom" bill. They made it slightly less horrible. Everybody who created this, still a monster. #Indiana— Steve Marmel (@Marmel) April 2, 2015