Target: Indiana Governor Mike Pence
Goal: Don’t legalize discrimination against the LGBT community.
Businesses, individuals, and institutions in Indiana will soon be given free reign to discriminate against LGBT people, if legislation currently being considered in the state becomes law. This community needs more legal protections, not less. Demand that this horrible proposal is vetoed when it arrives on Governor Mike Pence’s desk.
While many states are pursuing “religious freedom” bills that provide legal protections for individuals with anti-LGBT religious beliefs to discriminate against LGBT people on the basis of their gender or sexual orientation, Indiana’s own version, Senate Bill 101, stands out due to its broad potential impact.
While it would bar the state from adopting any laws that would “burden” a person’s ability to follow their religious beliefs—a component common to many religious freedom bills currently being considered in states around the country—it would also define “person” as any individual, religious institution, private business, or association. The potential impact of such a sweeping definition is businesses being able to legally refuse service to anyone they suspect of being gay, lesbian, or transgender.
This bill has already passed Indiana’s House, and is expected to pass its Senate as well. Additionally, Governor Pence has gone on record saying that he would support it and sign it into law if it came to him. Sign the petition below to demand that Governor Pence reverse his position and veto this bill when it arrives on his desk.
Dear Governor Pence,
I am writing you today regarding your support for Senate Bill 101. This is a misguided proposal that will instate sweeping protections for people to discriminate against the LGBT community. It does not deserve your signature.
“Religious freedom” bills such as this one are less about protecting Americans’ right to freedom of religion and more about ensuring that those who are prejudiced against a specific community of other Americans have the legal protections to act on those prejudices. This is legalized discrimination, plain and simple.
Gay people and those of non-binary genders do not deserve to be treated as second-class citizens by anyone, be it an individual, a business, or an organization. Additionally, members of the LGBT community already experience alarmingly-high rates of hate crimes. Any law that further ostracizes this community will do nothing but increase these rates and put countless lives in danger.
Passing this bill would be reckless at best and outright dangerous at worst. I demand that you revoke your support for SB 101 and veto it when it arrives on your desk so that it can never put anyone in danger.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons