There’s “a bad moon arisen” in Dixie.
Folks in the Deep South have been having a hard time wrapping their head around the Supreme Court’s recent decision to grant LGBT married couples equal rights and protections under the law. It seems that this ruling offended the religious sensibilities of those living in the land of cotton.
Not to be dissuaded by the law of the land, brain dead Republican state legislatures in several southern states decided to legalize their bigotry by passing legislation which allows individuals and corporations to deny services to members of the LGBT community if providing those services violates their religious beliefs.
The response to this discriminatory temper tantrum has been swift and harsh.
Several major corporations like Google and PayPal have announced that they are cancelling plans to build or lease facilities in these southern states. Many others have announced that they will close down their operations rather than be a part of this attempt to legalize discrimination.
I heard one proponent of these new laws declare that the corporations who were refusing to conduct business in these southern states were themselves engaging in discriminatory practices. More on that brain cramp theory in a moment.
This corporate backlash will have a disastrous economic affect in the Deep South. However it is but the tip of the iceberg to what is brewing in Washington.
You see the feds do not take kindly to violations of federal law; and there are a number of federal agencies that see these discriminatory state laws as just that. We are learning now that a number of federal agencies are looking into denying federal funding to states that have enacting these “Religious Freedom” laws. Such action would deny these states billions in essential dollars that they need to survive. North Carolina might get by with some stringent cost cutting measures. Tennessee would have a tougher time. As for Mississippi…if not for federal funding the state would all but cease to exist. Mississippi can barely provide essential services and poorly educate their children WITH federal funding. Without it…
This really isn’t all that difficult.
If the LGBT lifestyle offends your religious sensibilities then you are free under the law to refrain from living that lifestyle. But in this country, if you decide to make your living serving the general public then you will serve everyone who walks into your place of business. Period! If you do not wish to serve members of the LBGT community, or any other particular race, color or creed, for religious or any other reason, then you are free to close your doors to everyone and pursue another line of work.
That is exactly what these boycotting corporations are doing. Choosing to close their doors and forego the profits available to them, rather than participate in a local community that discriminates against certain American citizens.
I would recommend that the conservative legislatures in the Deep South take a deep breath and consider the words they claim to live by. I refer them to the Constitution and the Bible; two historic documents that right wing conservatives and evangelicals love to thump. Perhaps I am incorrect but I believe both of these hallowed documents call for equal and fair treatment of all people…not just straight Christians.
What we have here is yet another example of what happens when rigid right wing ideology meets reality. Not good.
Or in the words of John Fogarty and Credence Clearwater Revival…
“I see a bad moon arisen.”
“I see trouble on the way.”