Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Mississippi Legalizing Hate

The National LGBTQ Task Force has joined hundreds of organizations, companies & media calling on Governor Phil Bryant of Mississippi to resign. One week ago the governor signed HB 1523 into law that legalizes discrimination against our LGBTQ community. This new law may also lead to discrimination against unmarried people raising children, unmarried people having sex & others. Rea Carey, National LGBTQ Task Force, Executive Director stated, “Mississippi has once again passed a law that unduly infringes on basic human rights. What Governor Bryant did was immoral. That's why he must resign immediately. By signing this law, he is targeting some of the poorest people with the least legal protections in our nation, Mississippi's LGBTQ community. Bryant manipulated faith & cherished constitutional rights to justify this reprehensible action. Make no mistake: this law was knowingly designed to have the biggest negative impact on the most vulnerable. Contrary to what the Governor has said, this law makes a mockery of the basic American idea that we are guaranteed freedom of religion & freedom from religion. We believe that what he did makes his position untenable." Mississippi has the highest proportion of gay & lesbian couples raising children in our nation at 26%. It has one of the highest percentages of Black gay & lesbian couples. Mississippi has the highest number of poor people in the country — many of whom are LGBTQ. "These folks already face devastating discrimination and racism. With this law they are going to face more. This is what makes Bryant's action so despicable," Carey added. The state's new law discriminates against LGBTQ people & many others in a number of different contexts. These include: the workplace, at schools, in health care settings & in public spaces such as stores, hotels or eateries by giving individuals, religious associations & private entities the right to use their religious beliefs as an excuse to "shut the door" on anyone they choose.
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