March 31, 2015

Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard’s Powerful Response.


Update: Here is a copy of tomorrow’s front page of The Indianapolis Star:


A huge backlash has directly followed Indiana’s signing of a Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

While other states have implemented similar laws to this one, the majority of them have also included civil rights legislation to protect anti-gay usage.

Indiana’s Governor Mike Pence has so far said that at this stage there is no intention to pass laws to protect the LGBT community from religious groups discriminating against them.

Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook tweeted against the act saying, “Apple is open for everyone. We are deeply disappointed in Indiana’s new law.”

The head of Salesforce.com Marc Benioff has also spoken saying his company would help its employees move out of the state and stop travel to Indiana.

On Saturday, March 30th, around 3,000 people gathered at the Indiana Statehouse to protest against the new law.

Outrage towards Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restorations Act spread quickly across all social media sites following the news of the signing, with many high profile figures voicing concern. Cher, Ellen DeGeneres, Miley Cyrus, Ashton Kutcher and Hilary Clinton are just a few who have used their social media platform to speak of their disappointment towards this new law.

Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard has been in opposition to the bill from the start and has raised concerns regularly about his feelings towards the signing. Following the news of the signing Ballard said, “I had hoped the Statehouse wouldn’t move in this direction on RFRA, but it seems as if the bill was a fait accompli from the beginning. We are a diverse city, and I want everyone who visits and lives in Indy to feel comfortable here. RFRA sends the wrong signal.”

Ballard continues, “Our city thrives because we have welcomed and embraced diversity. And RFRA threatens what thousands have spent decades building. Discrimination is wrong. And I hope that message is being heard loud and clear at our Statehouse.”

Greg Ballard’s full speech can be viewed here;

Unfortunately, as of today’s date, Mike Pence, Indiana’s Governor stands by the act and defended it saying, “We are not going to change this law.”

However, the outcry against the bill continues and will unlikely settle any time soon. With calls to boycott Indiana, and the eyes of the world watching, Pence may find that the strength in people when fighting inequality together, is a force far too powerful to deny.

Here is the actual bill: Senate Bill 101





Author: Alex Myles

Editor: Travis May

Photo: YouTube still


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