Tuesday, March 29, 2016
After dozens of threats from companies like the NFL, Disney, and Marvel to pull out of the state, Georgia Gov. Deal has decided to veto a law sent to him by the state legislature to swell the rights of people with religious convictions.
Deal said, "I do not think we have to discriminate against anyone to protect the faith-base community in Georgia.
Supporters of the bill said it wasn't discriminatory, and it protects religious people's faiths, as well represents the will of the people. But LGBT activists argue that since there are no state protections for gender identity and sexual preference, this bill would override local laws that may have the protections, enabling religious organizations like hospitals or "Good-Will-like" businesses to refuse serving or hiring customers because of a claimed religious belief.
Thursday, March 24, 2016
After Charlotte, NC passed a local law adding the words "gender identity" and "sexual preference" to the anti-discrimination list, several conservative groups rushed in to mangle it.
And it worked.
Gov. Pat McCrory signed into law a monumental anti-LGBT bill after a special session to move the bill forward. The bill is deemed the "bathroom law", referring to language that requires biological genders to remain in their respectively labelled bathrooms. But it also includes several other protections for religion with explicit reference to business. On top of that, the state law explicitly supersedes any local city laws, that contradict it.
Here is a quick summary:
1) A person may only use a public bathroom labelled for his or her biological gender.
2) Nondiscrimination includes race, religion, color, nation origin, and biological sex. Nothing is said about gender identity or sexual preference.
3) No local or city ordinance may change this definition of nondiscrimination and must label all public multi-person bathrooms as either male or female, enforcing entrance by biological gender.
A law in Georgia has made its way up to the Governor's desk that undermines LGBT equality momentum. The law broadens the rights of people with strong religious beliefs, preventing any adverse consequences for discriminating against anyone for any reason, as long the reasoning is based on those beliefs.
A number of bills and laws have flurried their ways to local and state governments--usually owned originally by conservative think-tanks and anti-LGBT religious organizations. The southern states have seen most of them.
Disney and Marvel, as well as countless other corporations have threatened to pull out of Georgia if Gov. Deal signs the bill into Georgia law. Such pull outs would severely hurt the state's economy--enough for Deal to strongly consider veto-ing the bill, due by May 3.
Indiana and Arizona also faced similar laws protecting the religious on a fear of attack by minorities. Arizona vetoed its law, and Indiana amended its law after serious business threats should the law remain.