Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston
Tuesday, April 12, 2016
Tennessee, North Carolina, Mississippi SHAME!
Republican led states Tennessee, North Carolina, and Mississippi are set to pass or have passed hateful anti-LGBT legislation that legalizes making the LGBT community second-class citizens. Tennessee's repulsive bill, which awaits the governor's signature, even allows mental health counselors to turn away anyone from the LGBT community for reasons of "sincerely held beliefs."
Gay rights and mental health advocacy groups have protested the bill and urge Tennessee Governor Haslam to veto it because it could permit mental health professionals to discriminate against LGBT patients without legal liability.
The bill passed by the legislature is a more discriminatory version of legislation approved earlier this year. That measure stated that therapists and counselors could turn away patients based on “sincerely held beliefs.” The state House last week passed a version that expanded grounds for shunning patients to “principles,” which the Senate approved on Monday.
Some opponents of the bill said they worried the wording could allow discrimination against other groups, including people of color. “There’s no litigation on what those ‘principles’ are,” state Sen. Jeff Yarbro (D) said on Monday.
Tennessee would become the only state with such a law, according to the American Counseling Association. The measure would violate the group’s code of ethics, which affirms that mental health professionals cannot refuse treatment based on “personally held values, attitudes, beliefs and behaviors.”
Tennessee lawmakers also are considering a proposal that would require transgender individuals to use bathrooms that correspond with their gender at birth, part of a wave of anti-LGBT legislation proposed in the South.
Last summer the SCOTUS ruled that marriage equality was legal and, therefore, states that did not allow same-sex marriage were in violation of federal law. Not happy with the ruling, several states, mostly in the Bible Belt, began formulating laws that would bypass the SCOTUS ruling and keep the LGBT community in second-class citizen status.
It is interesting to note that many of the people who support these discriminatory laws against the LGBT community are the same people who soil their undies worrying about Sharia Law coming to the U.S. Fundamental Muslims in theocratic countries in the Middle East would certainly be sympathetic to the southern states that believe in punishing people for who they are.
But not all of America agrees with those bigoted states:
States Turn Their Back On Mississippi Over Its New Discriminatory Law
Another business refuses to invest in North Carolina:
Deutsche Bank announced Tuesday that it would suspend its plans to add 250 jobs in its Cary, North Carolina office, citing the state's sweeping law that overrode local measures protecting LGBT individuals from discrimination and limited employees' ability to sue over workplace discrimination.
"We take our commitment to building inclusive work environments seriously. We’re proud of our operations and employees in Cary and regret that as a result of this legislation we are unwilling to include North Carolina in our US expansion plans for now.
We very much hope that we can re-visit our plans to grow this location in the near future," Deutsche Bank Co-CEO John Cryan