Hollywood Condemns Georgia’s Religious Liberty Bill

Nathan Deal Georgia Religious Liberity
AP Photo/David Goldman

UPDATED: MGM, Sony, Lionsgate, 21st Century Fox, the Weinstein Company, CBS, Discovery, Comcast NBCUniversal and Time Warner are the latest media companies to oppose a pending religious liberty bill in Georgia. Time Warner says the bill “clearly violates the values and principles of inclusion and the ability of all people to live and work free from discrimination,” while the Weinstein Company says it “will not stand behind sanctioning the discrimination of‎ LGBT people or any American.” Sony said “Bill HB 757 is anathema to our studio and to all those who value diversity and inclusion.”

MGM says it’s “unequivocally committed to inclusion, diversity and tolerance in all circumstances.”

The Weinstein Company also threatened to move its Lee Daniels-directed biopic of Richard Pryor, which is set to begin filming before the end of the year‎. The film stars Oprah, Eddie Murphy, Kate Hudson, Mike Epps and Tracy Morgan.

“We have plans in place to begin filming Lee Daniels’ new film in Georgia later this year, but will move the production if this unlawful bill is enacted,” TWC said. “We hope Governor Deal will veto bill HB 757 and not allow sanctioned bigotry to become law in Georgia.”

Gov. Nathan Deal has not said whether he would sign the legislation, which state lawmakers passed last week.

21st Century Fox also released a statement.

“On behalf of 21st Century Fox’s many creative partners and colleagues who choose to film their projects in the beautiful state of Georgia, we join the growing coalition of businesses in asking Governor Deal to veto this bill,” it reads.

Lionsgate sent out a statement as well.

“Lionsgate has deep roots in the State of Georgia in our film, television and location-based entertainment businesses,” Lionsgate said. “As a Company committed to diversity, inclusiveness and tolerance, we urge the Governor of Georgia to veto the deplorable and regressive legislation (House Bill 757) that has been sent to him. We take pride in our relationship with the people of Georgia and want to ensure that we can continue to offer our employees and talent there a working environment consistent with our policies and values.”

CBS also followed up with a statement on Thursday.

“CBS Corporation is committed to an environment that values diversity and inclusion throughout the company and in all our business practices,” reads that statement. “The discriminatory language in Georgia’s proposed religious liberty bill conflicts with these core ethics and values. We call on Governor Deal to exercise his veto power.”

Discovery also annouced its “commitment to the values of diversity, inclusion and acceptance of all cultures and lifestyles.”

“As a purpose-driven company, we strive to promote a value system that respects differences, empowers communities, and inspires us all to create a more vibrant world,” it said. “We strongly oppose any laws tolerating discrimination of any kind. We urge Gov. Deal to veto the proposed Georgia law that would limit the freedoms and protections of LGBT residents of Georgia.”

Hollywood heavyweights, including Daniels, Aaron Sorkin, Rob Reiner, Anne Hathaway, Julianne Moore and Kathleen Kennedy, are also vowing not work in Georgia if Deal signs the bill.

“We pride ourselves on running inclusive companies, and while we have enjoyed a positive partnership on productions in Georgia, we will plan to take our business elsewhere if any legislation sanctioning discrimination is signed into state law,” they said in a letter, released by the Human Rights Campaign, on Thursday.

The Walt Disney Co. and Marvel Entertainment indicated that they would not shoot productions in the state if the governor signed the bill, while Viacom and AMC issued statements in opposition.

The law protects religious officials from having to perform same-sex marriage ceremonies, and would allow faith-based organizations to deny services or employment to those who violate their “sincerely held religious belief.”

On Thursday night, North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory signed a bill that overturns local LGBT anti-discrimination ordinances, including a recent ordinance passed by the city of Charlotte. The state scaled back its incentive program in 2014, but there’s still production in the state, including ABC’s update of “Dirty Dancing,” which is shooting in the Asheville area.

“At Comcast NBCUniversal we are proud of our record of inclusion and stand against discrimination of all forms,” Comcast NBCUniversal said. “We join the voices that urge Governor Deal to protect Georgia from any discriminatory laws.”

Time Warner’s statement is below:

“At Time Warner, diversity in all its forms is core to our value system and to the success of our business. We strongly oppose the discriminatory language and intent of Georgia’s pending religious liberty bill, which clearly violates the values and principles of inclusion and the ability of all people to live and work free from discrimination.

“All of our divisions — HBO, Warner Bros. and Turner — have business interests in Georgia, but none more than Turner, an active participant in the Georgia Prospers campaign, a coalition of business leaders committed to a Georgia that welcomes all people. Georgia bill HB 757 is in contradiction to this campaign, to the values we hold dear, and to the type of workplace we guarantee to our employees. We urge Governor Deal to exercise his veto.”

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  1. dray green says:

    Practical commentary . I was enlightened by the insight ! Does anyone know if I could possibly access a blank IRS 1099-C form to fill out ?

  2. Pat Farrar says:

    As a a liberal Georgian; I’m offended that they think it was only the Hollywood types who objected. The governor got objections from many private citizens as well, including me. Glad he decided to go against bigotry this time. .

  3. Janice says:

    Screw Hollywood. They will film anywhere they can save a buck. Who are they kidding?

  4. Daniel Seib says:

    John, OMG! THis bill will give any business, organization or INDIVIDUAL the legal right to refuse to serve, hire, or accommodate any person (and not even just gay)and call it religious liberty. And you are saying that gay people want the freedom to do whatever they want??? Tell me, what right are gay people fighting for that you don’t already have. Tell me. Bet ya can’t.

  5. Daniel Seib says:

    John, your sentence makes no sense. I had better writing skills than you when I was 7. I thought all you bigots were geniuses. LOL

    • @Daniel Seib — It is legal in about 28 states for an employer to fire a highly competent and productive employee merely because that employee happens to be gay, or to refuse to hire a prospective employee merely because that employee happens to be gay. I should know — I was fired from a job at which I excelled back in 2007 merely because I happened to be gay. It is also legal in those 28 states for a landlord to evict a tenant or to refuse to offer housing to a tenant merely because that tenant happens to be gay. Furthermore, it is legal in those 28 states for places of public accommodation to refuse service to members of the public who happen to be gay. Many cities, towns, and municipalities have tried to work around these scenarios by enacting local anti-discrimination ordinances which outlaw such forms of sexual orientation discrimination, but the result is a patchwork of protections in those 28 states which have not passed statewide anti-discrimination measures prohibiting sexual orientation discrimination.

      Furthermore, the “protections” which HB 757 would grant pastors, priests, and other ministers of religion happen to exist already. No church can ever be forced to marry any couple in violation of its core religious values. This is black-letter law. The Catholic Church, for example, refuses to marry persons who have previously been divorced (unless they have obtained annulments of their first marriages). Nowhere in this country has the Catholic Church ever been successfully sued for refusing to marry such couples. Similarly, there still exist a number of churches which refuse to marry interracial couples — although such churches are morally obtuse, they cannot be sued successfully for refusing to marry such couples. The Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment grants churches the right to marry, or to refuse to marry, any couples they see fit.

      Julianne Moore is one of my favorite actresses, and I am delighted to note that she (along with many other Hollywood celebrities) is taking a stand, and will not work in Georgia if this obscene and retrograde measure is enacted into law.

      PHILIP

    • john says:

      Go take your dog Dolly out for a walk and calm down.

  6. john says:

    Liberals whine until they get their way. What’s new?

    • Mark Sweeny says:

      It’s the conservatives whining about gay marriage that’s caused this bill.

    • @john — I am PROUD to call myself a liberal. And far from “whining,” I am actively pressing the governor of my state (New York) to refuse to do business with any states which enact measures such as HB 757. Governor Andrew Cuomo prohibited the expenditure of any state funds for the purposes of travel into and out of Indiana when that state passed its so-called “Religious Freedom Restoration Act” (RFRA) almost exactly one year ago, and refused to do any form of business with that state. As a result of such pressure, the state of Indiana backed off and reversed course. Exhorting public servants to boycott states, corporations, and other entities which discriminate is an entirely respectable invocation of the democratic process, and does not constitute “whining” by any measure.

      As a conservative, you are entirely within your rights to act similarly. While I would call your actions cruel, discriminatory, and wrong-headed, I could not, in good conscience, refer to such actions as “whining.”

      PHILIP

    • Daniel Seib says:

      I see all you bigots are so upset that LBGT refuse you to discriminate against us. That’s the icing on the big rainbow wedding cake.

  7. Juice says:

    Hollywood – Freedom of religion bad, pedophilia and other perverse sexual urges -OK.

  8. Riff says:

    The bill, along with the one in North Carolina, has nothing whatsoever to do with that destructive deathstyle choice… not that I would expect the low-information nimrods in Hollowood to have bothered to read it before spouting off. But it’s nice for them to admit to the country once and for all that they are every bit as anti-Christian as they come off in their propaganda. SO inclusive… except, you know, for that pesky 70% of the country and all.

    Do you guys think you’re the only ones who know how to blacklist? We can do that too. Now, back to business as usual in the Middle East. Strangely, I don’t seem to be hearing so much as a peep out of La La Land about what’s going on there. Curious, that.

    • @Riff — I don’t know what you mean when you make reference to “that destructive deathstyle choice.” If you are referring to homosexuality, you betray your ignorance. Sexual orientation is not a choice — this is something recognized by every reputable mental health organization in the Western world. I am openly gay — the only “choice” I made was whether to continue to hide who and what I am, or whether to be open and honest about who and what I am. As for your reference to a “deathstyle” — it first bears noting that being gay is not a “lifestyle” — it is a STATE OF BEING, just as being heterosexual is a state of being. I have no choice over whether or not I am gay — this fact was recognized by the US Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. ___ (2015), in which decision the opinion for the majority twice referred to homosexuality as “immutable” (i.e., not subject to change). And as for homosexuality being a “deathstyle” — I can only surmise that you are referring to the fact that HIV / AIDS ravaged the gay male community throughout the 1980s and the 1990s. I have news for you — worldwide, the incidence of HIV infection is overwhelmingly heterosexual. And with such medical advances as Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) and successful “treatment as prevention,” the incidence of new HIV infections in the gay male community has plummeted. The latest research shows that individuals who are HIV-positive and who are meticulous in their compliance with their treatment regimens now live as long as HIV negative individuals.

      By all means, go ahead and blacklist. However, you will find that a solid majority of the American people (60%, according to Gallup and Pew Research polls taken just before Obergefell was handed down) are firmly on the side of same sex marriage, and that more than 80% of Americans believe that it is wrong to discriminate against gay men and lesbians in employment, housing, and access to places of public accommodation.

      In other words, you will find yourself very lonely.

      PHILIP

  9. Bring those productions to New Mexico, home of Breaking Bad, The Night Shift, Preacher, Independence Day 2, Whisky Tango Foxtrot, Sicario, The Scorch Trials, and hundreds of other productions. WE’RE READY!!!
    Oh, and New Mexico has LGBT protection laws in place already!!

  10. All the Press for this, but not the GA Guidestones? says:

    Yea like Hollywood values of the Flesh are somehow better than those of the Spirit. Meanwhile the Democrats let Muslims in the Country to kill you sheeple who cry out for the LGBT-Qmunity…

    The USA was Founded on Religious Freedom. From the Pilgrims to the Puritans. Why do Homosexuals think someone is required to Cater to them? The same with Illegal Aliens? What’s wrong with a bathroom for a male and a female? If someone has male parts they use the “male restroom” duh! If someone doesn’t make you a Gay-cake. Go find someone else who will. The USA used to be Capitalist. Where people would have niches for everything! Now the Government is a Fascist Oligarchy, runned by puppet masters who control both parties.

    Some Gays really need to grow a brain. There are bigger things like the Georgia Guidestones! If you think because you’re Gay, that somehow the Forces of Evil will look the other direction think again! Everyone will be wiped off the face of the Earth! Ooooh I’m scared of a stupid “anti-gay bill” in GA. All the while the Ruling Elite are plotting everyone’s deaths! CRY ME A RIVER! BOO HOO!

    The people that follow the Democrats with be the first to the slaughterhouse! Don’t blame Christians, when the Philosophy of the Guidestones are put into place!

    The only thing in GA to worry about is the Guidestones because it affects everyone.

    • @All the Press for this, but not the GA Guidestones? — It may surprise you to note that I believe that a transgendered person should not be permitted to use the restroom of his or her gender identity until that person has undergone the necessary surgery to bring his or her body into alignment with his or her gender identity — simply because to do otherwise would be to cause widespread confusion and discomfort for non-transgendered persons using the restroom in question. However, I take exception to your implicit argument that anti-discrimination ordinances are in some way symptomatic of this country having been turned into a “fascist oligarchy.” The Civil Rights Act of 1964 (as amended) was found to be constitutional by the US Supreme Court under a Commerce Clause analysis. Do you believe that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is “anti-capitalist?” Cities, towns, and other localities have enacted more protective measures (including protections for persons on the basis of sexual orientation) for several decades now. The purpose of these measures is to attempt to rid the nation of the cancer of discrimination. These measures have all been found to be constitutional under a Commerce Clause analysis.

      These measures do not arise in a vacuum. They arise because an aggrieved minority experiences discrimination, and attempts to ameliorate the destructive impact of such discrimination by pressing for the introduction of measures intended to prohibit such discrimination. These measures are introduced by city councils, state legislative bodies, etc., and are usually subject to a period of public comment, or a period during which constituents may voice their policy preferences to their state legislators. Votes are then taken in accordance with the democratic process. Sometimes, these votes take the form of direct action by citizens in public referenda — this is how same sex marriage was legalized in the states of Maine, Maryland, and Washington (long before the US Supreme Court handed down Obergefell v. Hodges, 576 U.S. ___ (2015)). This is usually how anti-discrimination measures are enacted.

      Baking a cake is not a form of religious expression. Arranging flowers is not a form of religious expression. If a bakery or florist wishes to do business in a given locality, that entity is required to abide by local and / or statewide laws against discrimination. Asserting a “religious exemption” to the laws of the state (or city, or town) could lead to chaos, as different entities insist on different treatment under the law.

      PHILIP

  11. Daniel Seib says:

    I think it’s time for the supporters of this legal discrimination to boycott Disney & Marvel. And Delta. And Home Depot. And UPS. And Coca-Cola. And Google. And IBM. And Marriott. And Microsoft. And AMC. And Viacom. And Nordstrom. And Dow Chemical And Verizon. And the NFL. I mean they’ll still have the KKK as a source of income.

    • @Daniel Seib — Actually, most of these firms have decided to boycott GA should this state enact measure HB 757 into law. These are huge companies which generate massive revenue streams (not to mention hundreds of thousands of jobs) for the state of GA. If these firms are sincere in their condemnation of HB 757, and mean what they say, there is a good chance that they will boycott the state of GA should HB 757 become law.

      Just as an example — should Google pull out of GA, this would lead to the loss of tens of thousands of jobs and billions of dollars of revenue for the state. And with so many Hollywood actors and actresses threatening not to work in the state of GA should HB 757 become law, additional revenue streams would dry up.

      Discrimination is expensive.

      PHILIP

  12. Jesse says:

    Silly thing to say. The people who make TV and film make that content for Web, too. They’re one and the same.

  13. Cool says:

    TV and film is dying a slow death to the Web anyway… getting into political blackmail is not helping it one bit. Glad to see it dying off. TV ratings are the slowest in 50 years, fewer and fewer films being made, this is good. Good riddance.

    • Conscientious Objector says:

      With movies and music being bootlegged on the internet left and right, Hollywood’s economic power is falling dramatically. This is why they can’t afford to turn out anything but shoestring budget reality shows, singing competitions and CGI crapfests that look like 1930’s claymation anymore. Hollywood’s importance to Georgia is vastly overstated. I’ve never once stumbled upon a shoot underway. Delta, Home Depot, UPS and Coca-Cola are the real financial powers of Georgia; Always have been and will be. They ain’t going anywhere.

      • @Conscientious Objector — Do you really believe that “Hollywood’s economic power is falling dramatically?” Because if you do, you are living in another world. Last year alone, Hollywood made about 12.5 billion dollars ($12,500,000,000). These are record-breaking numbers. Hollywood continues to turn out movies which attract massive ticket sales (e.g., “The Hunger Games” series, which have generated enormous sums of money due to the high quality of the adaptations from Suzanne Collins’ books). You are living in fantasyland if you truly believe that “Hollywood’s economic power is falling dramatically.”

        PHILIP

      • Conscientious Objector says:

        By the way I buy my music and movies at second hand shops, which means Hollywood corporations get zero pennies from my purchase. The fact they’re losing tons of money from second hand sales and bootlegging is the only reason they’re in Georgia and NC for the 30% tax breaks in the first place. So F `em.

    • cadavra says:

      Yeah, that’s why domestic theatrical grosses topped $11 billion for the first time last year–because the industry is dying. But please enjoy living in your alternate reality.

    • c o says:

      lol… Just how big is that rock you live under? C

  14. Steve says:

    Georgia is bad but not a done deal. North Carolina, on the other hand, has taken away it’s city’s rights to enact & enforce anti-discrimination laws. Even for LGBT veterans. If any state needs boycotted its NC.

    • @Steve — Thank you for pointing this out. North Carolina has enacted a measure so draconian that it is sure to be challenged in court. There is case law which could have relevance — most significantly, Romer v. Evans, 517 U.S. 620 (1996). In Romer, the US Supreme Court struck down a Colorado constitutional amendment (“Amendment 2”) which voided all local anti-discrimination measures which prohibited sexual orientation discrimination, and prohibited the enactment of any future such measures absent a statewide public referendum. The US Supreme Court held that “Amendment 2” was motivated by sheer “animus” (i.e., hatred) and struck this measure down in strong and powerful language as a per se violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Although the NC measure is a statutory measure and not a state constitutional amendment, there are many similarities between the two measures. In both cases, the measures in question voided all local anti-discrimination statutes to the extent that these statutes protected gay men and lesbians from discrimination on the basis of their sexual orientation, and in both cases, these measures prohibited the future enactment of such, or more protective, measures absent assent from a higher level of political participation. A case can be made that the two measures are sufficiently similar as to make the NC measure unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause.

      There is no question that the NC measure will be tried in court.

      PHILIP

  15. BillUSA says:

    This is wrong. Let it be known that from here on out, I will not pay to see another movie. Go pack your “you won’t be missed” knee-jerk responses. I am sick of the artistic community taking advantage of their position in trying to steer society.

    Moreso, it’s despicable how the homosexual community gets away with bullying religion when they themselves want total and abject tolerance for their kind. They don’t allow for people to live within their harmless sanctity when any homosexual discovers a business entity which doesn’t support their way of life. Instead, they set out to make an example of them to show the world how they can force a small-potato’s outfit to comply with their demands. Makes one wonder about the sincerity of their claim to help create an atmosphere of acceptance.

    When given the opportunity to forgive, forget and move on, the homosexuals feign offense while exercising intolerance.

    I’m not religious. I’m a scientifically-minded individual. But it’s a terrible time to be religious in this country because your life’s work could be destroyed for simply minding your own business. Yes, they are in business to serve, but they don’t HAVE to serve everyone.

    Bastards!

    • @BillUSA says “Moreso, it’s despicable how the homosexual community gets away with bullying religion when they themselves want total and abject tolerance for their kind.”

      ************
      Response:
      ************

      Nobody is “bullying religion.” If a small business wishes to do business in a city which has an anti-discrimination measure on its books, that small business has made a conscious choice to abide by, and to respect, the anti-discrimination measure in question. Hence, if an anti-discrimination measure prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, any small business which opens its doors is bound by law to obey the dictates of that measure — period. This is not “bullying” — measures such as the ones in question are enacted by city councils or state legislatures in accordance with the give and take of the democratic process. Measures such as anti-discrimination measures are usually subject to a period of public comment and input before city council members of state legislators vote for or against the measures in question.

      You cannot defy the laws of your state (or city, or town) merely by asserting that your religion should exempt you from so doing. As Justice Antonin Scalia stated, in Employment Division, Department of Human Resources of Oregon v. Smith, 494 U.S. 872 (1990):

      “It is a permissible reading of the [free exercise clause]…to say that if prohibiting the exercise of religion is not the object of the [law] but merely the incidental effect of a generally applicable and otherwise valid provision, the First Amendment has not been offended…. To make an individual’s obligation to obey such a law contingent upon the law’s coincidence with his religious beliefs, except where the State’s interest is “compelling”–permitting him, by virtue of his beliefs, “to become a law unto himself,”–contradicts both constitutional tradition and common sense. To adopt a true “compelling interest” requirement for laws that affect religious practice would lead towards anarchy.”

      In other words, people cannot defy the law and cry “religious liberty” when the law in question is facially neutral and of general application (i.e., it applies to everybody), even if it has the INCIDENTAL effect of prohibiting the exercise of religion — to allow otherwise would be to create a nation in which each person would become “a law unto himself.”

      The result of such a system would be anarchy.

      PHILIP

    • JOE S HILL says:

      You hit the nail right on the head! this is the liberal media,trying to brainwash people into opening up to Gay rights,,and their idea of equality,is pretty clear-dominate and destroy it’s opposition! the liberal factions running corporate Hollywood,is now using the Entertainment business to force LGBT rights onto a very divided American public,and ABC-TV is airing a series now,called “THE REAL O’NEALS”,which is as disgusting and obscene as you’re going to get,with the example of being hit bellow the belt! but resorting to boycotts and pulling out from states,that don’t go along with this same sex insanity,,that’s the REAL lunatic fringe,,and it sucks!!

    • Patrick says:

      If wacko Christians think they can refuse the these can refuse to work. Not blackmail.

    • Odie says:

      Right, you probably went out and rented a movie tonight….

  16. The Truth says:

    The U.S. Constitution guarantees equal rights under the law to all citizens, regardless of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or gender identity. But the Church is also guaranteed the freedom of religious practice without interference from the State. This means that the State cannot force a Church official to perform a religious ceremony, regardless of any discriminatory motivation the official may have. For instance, surely the Catholic Church’s sanction of denying women the priesthood is gender discrimination, as is Orthodox Judaism’s denial of smicha to women. Should the State force officials of these religions to perform religiously prohibited ordination rites? Our Constitution says “no.”

    Just as our citizenry must endure objectionable commentary as a consequence of guaranteed free speech, we must unfortunately endure the objectionable practices of unenlightened religions, unless these practices can be shown to be abusive. Even though it’s emotionally distressful for some, denial of a religious rite has yet to be adjudicated as legally rising to the level of abuse.

    Faith-based organizations are a different matter. If they engage in commerce, they are subject to the laws of the State and are legally bound to uphold statutes that prohibit discrimination. Any statute that seeks to legalize discrimination in the public square is unconstitutional. For that reason, Georgia’s governor should veto House Bill 757.

    It is constitutional, however, for religious officials to exercise their freedom to refuse to perform marriage rites or any other religious rites, and no additional legislation is necessary to guarantee that right.

    Studios and other business entities are equally free to express their distaste for any legislative or political practice they find objectionable by opting to conduct business where these practices are not sanctioned. They are not free, however, to discriminate against anyone because of religious beliefs.

  17. Odie says:

    Go drink in your own water fountain and places only are designated for you…. douchebag.

  18. Amazing to me that a law which will keep pastors from being sued for upholding their First Amendment religious rights by refusing to handle gay marriages is considered discriminatory. Are gays the only people who have protection under the Constitution? There are plenty of clerics who will perform these ceremonies. Hollywood, typically, is siding with the Nazis.

    • @Larry Thompson — You grossly misrepresent the truth. HB 757 is completely unnecessary insofar as it protects pastors and other ministers of religion from having to perform gay marriages against their wills. It is black-letter law that no church (or church official) can EVER be forced to perform a wedding of which it disapproves due to its religious teachings. For example, the Catholic Church steadfastly refuses to marry couples in the event that one or both members have previously been divorced (unless the person(s) in question have obtained (an) annulment(s)). No government can EVER force the Catholic Church to violate its beliefs in this regard. Similarly, there still exist churches which refuse to marry interracial couples — and these churches CANNOT be forced to marry such couples, despite the odious nature of this practice. Similarly, no church in the land can EVER be forced to perform a same sex marriage in violation of its tenets — it is for this reason that couples can choose to marry in City Hall (furthermore, some Christian churches DO permit same sex marriages — an example is the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC)). When this fact is taken into consideration, it becomes manifest that HB 757 is intended to remedy a problem which does not exist. The true motives behind the backers of HB 757 have nothing to do with protecting religious practitioners from marrying same sex couples in violation of their faith — their true motives are to harm, denigrate, and demean the gay and lesbian community.

      Isn’t it amazing how knowledge of the facts can change one’s perspective?

      PHILIP

    • Daniel Seib says:

      “Are gays the only people who have protection under the Constitution?”

      No. But we (LBGT and open-minded straight folks) sure as hell aren’t going to sit back and allow others trying to assure that we are the only ones who are not.

    • Elian Gonzalez says:

      Your point would be better served if you childishly didn’t feel the need to invoke the Nazis, which is such a lame comparison but often what passes for serious comment nowadays.

      • @BillUSA says “Do you have a more apt comparison?”

        ************
        Response:
        ************

        Given the fact that the Nazis murdered about 6,000,000 Jews, an unknown number of Gypsies, tens of thousands of children and adults who were retarded or mentally ill, and an unknown number of gay men, and your comparison is quickly revealed as being grossly offensive to any thinking person and utterly lacking in persuasive merit.

        Gay men and lesbians such as myself are merely insisting that we be treated as equals in a civic society. People like you assert that we somehow seek “special rights” or “special protections.” The US Supreme Court quickly dispensed with this contention in Romer v. Evans, 517 U.S. 620 (1996) with the following passage:

        “We find nothing special in the protections Amendment 2 withholds. These are protections taken for granted by most people either because they already have them or do not need them; these are protections against exclusion from an almost limitless number of transactions and endeavors that constitute ordinary civic life in a free society.”

        Baking a wedding cake is not an expression of religion. Arranging flowers for a wedding is not an expression of religion. When a bakery or florist does business in a community which has enacted a non-discrimination measure, that vendor has an affirmative duty to abide by and obey the law. If that vendor cannot or will not do so, it should either move to another locale, or change the nature of the business which it transacts.

        PHILIP

      • BillUSA says:

        Do you have a more apt comparison?

  19. Dan says:

    I don’t know why Hollywood feels so compelled to get involved with every political battle.

    • @Dan — Because Hollywood actors are, for the most part, highly successful men and women who value diversity and who work alongside openly gay men and lesbians, thereby coming to know them as human beings and not as mere abstractions. Furthermore, Hollywood has the money to influence politics and policies, and many Hollywood celebrities believe that they have the moral duty to do the right thing when they perceive that a small minority (roughly 4% of the US population) is being bullied by rich, Republican lawmakers who were carefully and strategically bankrolled into their respective positions by rich and powerful extremist right-wing backers such as the Koch brothers.

      I hope that this answers your question.

      PHILIP

      • @Conscientious Objector — Are you aware of the fact that the NFL is threatening not to host the Super Bowl in Atlanta should HB 757 become law? Do you have any idea how many BILLIONS of dollars this decision, alone, will cost the state of GA? Are you aware that the large banking institutions which you name (Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley) all have diversity policies in hiring and employment which specifically prohibit discrimination against gay employees, and all offer benefits to the spouses of gay employees? Are you aware that the other companies whose names you provide are all opposed to passage of HB 757? Are you aware that major corporations are actually threatening to move, or not to open branches, in GA should HB 757 become law?

        I don’t think that you realize the full economic impact to the state of GA which will follow should HB 757 become law.

        Literally BILLIONS of dollars will be lost.

        Our governor (Andrew Cuomo) is already threatening to prohibit the expenditure of any state funds for the purposes of travel into and out of GA should HB 757 become law. He is already threatening to void all contracts with vendors in the state of GA should HB 757 become law.

        You are completely oblivious to the impact of this legislation.

        As for the “highly successful men and women who have been elected by the people” — the GA legislature has been overrun by Republican scum planted there strategically by entities such as the Koch brothers. WAKE UP!

        PHILIP

      • Conscientious Objector says:

        @PhillipChandler Hope this answers your question: NC and GA lawmakers are highly successful men and women who have been elected by the people actually residing in their state to do their will. They don’t care what a visitor from Hollywood thinks. The “jobs” that Hollywood brings to NC and GA are roughly zero. The crews who make the movies are flown in from California and then fly back out, probably staying less than six months to avoid paying state taxes, so politicians have zero need to consider their viewpoints. Speaking of economic influence, have you heard of Bank of America? Headquartered in Charlotte, and has been for years. You think a Hollywood B-movie production has more impact than Bank of America? Here in Atlanta we’ve got Arby’s, Chick-fil-A, UPS, Delta, Coca-Cola and Home Depot. I’m SURE they rake in more than some movie aimed at illiterate teens. But continue your vain “advocating.”

    • john says:

      Because their smug rich people who think they’re better than everyone else?

    • Wiliw says:

      Read the companies’ statements – the legislation in a state they they do business with do not represent their values, so they are chosing not to do business with that state. And in case you forgot – Citizens United says that Corporations now have a voice in the political arena.

  20. Bob says:

    I find it ironic that 21st Century Fox is boycotting a 19th Century legislature.

  21. Steven C Buchanan says:

    This is all fantastic. You need to teach Trump supporters about INCLUSION.

  22. You know these same people don’t have a problem with doing business with China.

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