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Disney and Marvel Threaten Georgia State Boycott

Last week the Disney Company threatened to cease filming in Georgia if their Governor, Nathan Deal (R), passes the Religious-Liberty Bill(hb 757) into law.

Since that warning shot to the Georgia Legislature, Marvel Studios, a subsidiary of Disney, joined forces threatening to “take their business elsewhere,” as reported in the Washington Post.

WE APPLAUD THE DOZENS OF LEADERS FROM THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY WHO ARE TAKING A STAND TODAY AGAINST DISCRIMINATION, INTOLERANCE, AND BIGOTRY

Thursday, with the full endorsement of the Human Rights Campaign, a letter was issued in opposition of the Religious-Liberty Bill. “We applaud the dozens of leaders from the entertainment industry who are taking a stand today against discrimination, intolerance, and bigotry,” said HRC President Chad Griffin.

“Disney and Marvel are inclusive companies, and although we have had great experiences filming in Georgia, we will plan to take our business elsewhere should any legislation allowing discriminatory practices be signed into state law,” the Disney Co. said in a statement.

WE STRONGLY OPPOSE THE DISCRIMINATORY LANGUAGE AND INTENT OF GEORGIA’S PENDING RELIGIOUS-LIBERTY BILL…

Time Warner, corporate parent of Atlanta-based CNN and owner of a number of additional cable networks, including HBO and Warner Bros., released the following statement, “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,” Time Warner said in a statement, which concluded with a call for Deal to veto the measure.

Since Disney’s and Marvel’s pronouncement, nearly 3-dozen Directors, Writers, Actors, and Producers have signed a petition to cease working in the state of Georgia, should the bill be passed into law.

The signatories of the letter include Aaron Sorkin, Seth MacFarlane, Anne Hathaway, Rob Reiner, Julianne Moore, Kristin Chenoweth, Harvey Weinstein, Marisa Tomei, Lee Daniels, and Gus Van Sant. I fully expect that list has grown and people such as Nathan Lane, Ellen Degeneres, and Wanda Sykes will proudly add their names.

The anti-LGBT section of the proposed bill, generating this firestorm of controversy, reads:

Chapter 3 of Title 19 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to marriage generally, is amended by repealing Code Section 19-3-3.1, relating to a prohibition against same-sex marriage, and enacting a new Code Section 19-3-3.1 to read as follows: “19-3-3.1. No minister of the gospel or cleric or religious practitioner ordained or authorized to solemnize marriages according to the usages of the denomination, when acting in his or her official religious capacity, shall be required to solemnize any marriage in violation of his or her right to free exercise of religion under the Constitution of this state or of the United States.”

This protects the heritage rights of religious leaders to refuse performing same gender marriage ceremonies. This is in direct violation of the recent Supreme court landmark decision making marriage rights inclusive of every-gender couples.

A leading proponent of this bill, Ryan T. Anderson, writes that “America is in a time of transition. The court has redefined marriage, and beliefs about human sexuality are changing.” He continues, “During this time, it is critical to protect the right to disagree and the civil liberties of those who speak and act in accord with what Americans had always believed about marriage—that it is the union of husband and wife.” He holds a Ph.D. and is a senior fellow at The Heritage Foundation.

Any law, bill, policy, et cetera that blatantly discriminates against any one group, individual or belief simply cannot be tolerated. These continued practices imply that any one group or individual is better than another. Imperialism, on this level and directed at the LGBT community, must be radicalized.

I am thrilled that Disney, Marvel, and prominent film industry professionals are taking a strong stand against this ignorant and bigoted manner of thinking.

mir, irini, peace, amn,

-jahn

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