Thou shalt have no other gods before the Almighty Dollar!

Thou shalt have no other gods before the Almighty Dollar!

After his rope-a-dope of non answers to a straight forward question on ABC’s This Week on Sunday morning, Indiana governor Mike Pence revealed his true allegiance to the Eat-their-cake-and-have-it-too lobby.  Fallout is raining down amid whipsawing backlash from big business at the Governor’s signing of the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act last week.  When given ample opportunity to answer a simple question, “Does this law permit discrimination against LGBT Americans,” the Governor dodged it with ninja-like agility.  Well, sort of.  George Stephanopoulus was as amiable of an interviewer as they come and explained repeatedly that it was a Yes or No question.  Pence very laboriously kept his motive under wraps stating “We’re not going to change the law.”  As bigots and bullies often do, he played the victim card in the face of the prospect of big business threatening en masse pull outs and boycotts of his state.  This story is still evolving but it doesn’t take a lot of creative imagination to know where it is going.  If I were a gambling man I would be making book on when this law is repealed.

Earlier this month in the middle of the Mother Road’s most conservative stretch, HB 1371, The Oklahoma Religious Freedom Act was working its way through the State Capitol.  As with the Indiana version of the law, it would allow business owners to discriminate against LGBT citizens under the guise of religious freedom.  A conscientious Democratic representative from HD 44 (Norman) by the name of Emily Virgin successfully amended the bill with language that would mandate all businesses place their bigotry on display for the entire public to see.  Specifically:

“B.  Any person not wanting to participate in any of the activities set forth in subsection A of this section based on sexual orientation, gender identity or race of either party to the marriage shall post notice of such refusal in a manner clearly visible to the public in all places of business, including websites.  The notice may refer to the person’s religious beliefs, but shall state specifically which couples the business does not serve by referring to a refusal based upon sexual orientation, gender identity or race.”

Rep. Virgin explained that this language was necessary to circumvent the indignity and public humiliation of LGBT or others from being refused service.  So far this amendment has stopped HB 1371 in its tracks.  I am curious who on either side of the aisle would have the gall to sign off on something so anti-business.

There is an overarching issue on display here.  The Religious Right and associated fringe elements of the Republican Party and Conservative movement as a whole have clearly lost the war on marriage equality.  All these state level “Religious Freedom” legislative efforts are merely a desperate attempt to recoup some shred of relevance while struggling against a societal current that has clearly overtaken them.  The fact of the matter is that HB 1371 lost its luster when it was amended to place all bigotry on public display.  Last year Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoed her state’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act for the same reason Oklahoma’s likely will go down and Indiana’s will likely be repealed or severely scaled back.  As it turns out gay folk, their families and their friends spend money.  They spend a lot of money and big business in 2015 demands inclusion of all people.  The fact of the matter is that it is far better to be a miserable malcontent and solvent than to be a satisfied bigot and bankrupt.  Ask any member of the KKK that got taken to the cleaners in civil court by the Southern Poverty Law Center.  This is America and money talks and it talks louder than any insult or epithet.  Thou shalt have no other gods before the Almighty Dollar!  Is this some country or what?

OneDollar

2 Comments

  1. Route66Kid
    Apr 2, 2015

    Well stated, Carl. As it turns out it did not even take a full week before the Indiana RFRA was revamped into mere window dressing: http://news.yahoo.com/indiana-lawmakers-announce-proposed-religious-law-changes-132057903.html

  2. Carl Alexander
    Apr 1, 2015

    So much for Republicans being the “Party of Business” – they don’t even understand that you can’t STAY in business by turning away customers!

    Idiots, one & all – which pretty much speaks for the whole country, seeing as how we are supposedly a Representative Republic!