Tuesday, April 26, 2011
After sending sending a strong message to companies and businesses about discrimination against gays and lesbians, the House GOP in Nashville figured out a way to piss on it.
The measure sponsored by Republican Caucus Chairman Glen Casada of Franklin was approved 73-24 on Monday. The companion bill is awaiting a vote in the Senate State and Local Government Committee.
The proposal would void a Nashville ordinance barring companies that discriminate against gays and lesbians from doing business with the city.Come on, Home State! It feels like when Tennessee takes 1 step forward and 4 steps back.
Under state law it is illegal to discriminate against a person because of race, creed, color, religion, sex, age or national origin.The Nashville ordinance prohibits companies that discriminate because of sexual orientation or gender identity from receiving city contracts. It does not apply to local governments' hiring policies for their own workers.
Casada said having a different set of laws on the state and local level would hurt commerce and that his legislation seeks to "make sure we are homogenous."However, Democratic Rep. Jeanne Richardson of Memphis said "what this bill really is is anti-gay.""I think there's nothing homogeneous about this, but I think there's a lot that's homophobic about this bill," she said.