Overwhelming opposition to Arizona's repulsive bill allowing discrimination

Resistance is growing to Arizona's bill, SB 1062. The proposed law, which is currently being sent to Governor Jan Brewer, where she is deciding whether to sign it or not, will permit businesses and individuals to deny not only LGBT people, but virtually anyone, any services they provide based on the provider's individual religious beliefs. Opposition to the bill is coming from businesses, celebrities, activsits, as well as politicians from both parties. You can join your name to the chorus calling on Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer to veto the bill.

Below, we have a roundup of the reactions to the discriminatory law:

Both Arizona senators have called on Governor Brewer to  veto the law.

Additionally, three Arizona State Senators, Bob Worsley, Adam Driggs, and Steve Pierce, who voted for the bill have also understood the damage to the state and urged the Governor to veto the bill. 

Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild stated in an open letter to the people of Arizona:

"Discrimination by private businesses led to some of the most noteworthy moments of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s. The Montgomery Bus Boycott was targeted at the Montgomery Bus Lines, sparked by the arrest of Rosa Parks for refusing to move to the back of the bus. Civil rights activists who claimed white-only lunch counters as their own were subject to arrest, beatings and worse. I have spent a great deal of time in Mexico working to undo damage done by SB 1070 to our state’s ability to benefit from trade with one of the world’s emerging economies. I remember the fallout from Arizona’s long delay in passing a Martin Luther King Holiday. SB 1062 and HB 2153 are not only offensive, but if signed into law, will cause our state and our region significant economic harm. I ask our governor in the strongest possible terms to veto this legislation, and I urge Tucsonans to contact her with that request as well." 

The Mayor of Mesa Arizona, Scott Smith posted his concern the bill would have on Arizona's economy.

Actor and LGBT advocate George Takei wrote an open letter to Arizona legislators, which was posted on Allegiance.com, expressing his anger about the bill. 

Congratulations. You are now the first state actually to pass a bill permitting businesses-even those open to the public- to refuse to provide service to LGBT people based on a individual's "sincerely held religious belief." So let me make myself clear. If your Governor Jan Brewer signs this repugnant bill into law, make no mistake. We will not come. We will not spend. And we will urge everyone we know-from large corporations to small families on vacation-to boycott. Because you don't deserve our dollars. Not one red cent.

Arizona Central reported the overwhelming opposition to the bill from businesses.

Economic-development groups and business leaders, perhaps stung by memories of the backlash from a tough anti-immigration law in 2010, expressed concern over the latest controversial bill headed to Gov. Jan Brewer’s desk. Just as the Arizona economy begins gaining momentum, the new legislation could hurt its recovery — and the state’s reputation as a place to do business — they said. In 2010, boycotts of the state hit the tourism industry especially hard after Senate Bill 1070 was passed. The Greater Phoenix Economic Council urged a veto of the controversial legislation that would allow discrimination against gays, saying it could affect Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale and have “profound, negative” economic effects for years.

Business Journal noted that two "influential business and economic groups" are opposing the bill and are joining LGBT rights groups to oppose the bill.

Arizona missed out on a Super Bowl in 1993 after state opposition to the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday. “It will lead to discrimination of many Arizonans in the name of religion. And it tarnishes Arizona’s reputation,” said Steven Glenn Zylstra, president and CEO of the Arizona Technology. Zylstra wants other businesses opposed to SB 1062 to contact the Brewer who will decide the measure’s fate.

"Governor Jan Brewer needs to listen to the overwhelming chorus of business, political, and entertainment leaders who have condemned the bill and called on her to veto it," said GLAAD's National Spokesperson, Omar Sharif, Jr. "This bill clearly hurts Arizona residents and the entire state. It's time for the media to shine a spotlight on those who will be most harmed by such legislation." 

TAKE ACTION

Contact Governor Jan Brewer to urge her to veto SB 1062. If you are an Arizona resident who will be impacted by this discriminatory legislation, share your story with GLAAD so that the media can hear from you. 

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As a Major League Baseball umpire for the past 29 seasons, Dale Scott has worked three World Series, three All-Star Games, two no-hitters and numerous playoff games. He is also the first out active male official in the MLB, NBA, NHL, or NFL, and the first Major League Baseball umpire to publicly say he is gay while active.