First a reputation stain, then the pocketbook strains. That's what lawmakers the world over learned to expect recently when efforts to penalize LGBT people move forward.
Gay people have been shunned, discriminated against, fired, verbally attacked, physically attacked and even killed for no other reason than being who they are. That's being bullied. Standing up for yourself and anyone who has been treated like this is not being a bully. It's being a decent human being.
Alright. Woo-hoo. We're partying now. With the kind of enthusiasm normally reserved for sorting Phillips head screws from flat head screws, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer publicly vetoed SB 1062.
What's funny, in a macabre way, is the effort to re-impose religion's will is dressed up as the next chapter in the same civil rights struggle that cleansed the public square of the zealot's self-proclaimed authority to begin with.
Sure, LGBT groups are operating within a political environment in which a small band of extremists have a lock on the GOP. But better to get nothing passed right now and continue to embarrass the GOP and watch it implode than to compromise our rights and pander to those extremists.
As we experience more victories like we did in Texas and Arizona last week, we'll be that much closer to seeing equality for all. We're getting there, but there's a lot more work to be done.
Much was said last week about SB 1062, a law that would have given businesses a license to discriminate. Lost amid the noise was another veto, one Governor Brewer issued by signing legislation overturning HB 2305, a package of voter suppression laws.
When a conservative Republican governor vetoes a "religious liberty" bill passed by a conservative Republican legislature because the business community tells her to, it shows who really calls the shots.
Surveying the reconfigured talk show landscape, I became annoyed that everybody gets to do a monologue but me. After all, I have hilarious thoughts as...
Governor Jan Brewer's moment of sanity notwithstanding, the sad spectacle of Arizona's SB 1062 is simply further proof that the GOP's obsession with bashing gays and regulating uteruses is itself impeding job growth in the states Republicans control.
It feels like at least every week, we're expected to believe that Republicans have learned their lesson about the dangers of embracing extremism. But is the lesson ever actually learned?
All those rights Americans cherish, those fundamental human and political freedoms protected by the U.S. Constitution, Republicans contend those aren't really inalienable rights or anything solid or permanent like that.
Governor Jan Brewer's veto of a bill that would have allowed discrimination against gays on religious grounds is only the latest example of the tension between the corporate and fundamentalist right. She acted because business elites feared that the measure would be bad for the state's economy.The alliance between the fundamentalist far right and the business elite was always a bizarre marriage of convenience. The Wall Street gang tends to be relatively liberal on social and lifestyle issues, the very issues where the conservative base detests godless liberals. Many Tea Party Republicans, meanwhile, embody a kind of rightwing economic populism that doesn't have much use for investment bankers.
And even though Governor Jan Brewer wisely vetoed the bill, it reminds us that for every inch gained in the fight for true freedom and equality in a country that pretends to cherish both, it only takes one act like this to set us back a mile.
This was a week of expansion and contraction. Equal rights were allowed to continue expanding in Arizona, where Governor Jan Brewer vetoed an anti-gay bill masquerading as a "religious freedom" bill, and in Texas, where a federal judge ruled the state's gay marriage ban unconstitutional. Meanwhile, the Treasury Department announced that the deficit had shrunk to its smallest level since 2008 -- although the victory here is less clear, since the byproduct of deficit cutting in the middle of an ongoing recession has been prolonged unemployment and slow growth. The idea that government spending should contract at the same time the overall economy does is an American Hustle not worthy of an award. More entertaining will be seeing whether the cinematic American Hustle will triumph tonight -- or whether the Best Picture Oscar will go to fellow front-runners Gravity and 12 Years a Slave. My own prediction for a big win: Ellen.
Your religious "right" to refuse service to gays and lesbians? Actually, no. ...