LGBT

George Takei Calls Arizona’s Religious Exemption Bill A "Jim Crow Law"

“Make no mistake, this is the new segregation.”

1. George Takei published a personal and angry op-ed regarding Arizona’s anti-LGBT law on blog.

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2. Governor Jan Brewer has until Friday to decide whether to sign or veto the bill. Here’s an excerpt from Takai’s essay:


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 an individual’s “sincerely held religious belief.” This “turn away the gay” bill enshrines discrimination into the law. Your taxi drivers can refuse to carry us. Your hotels can refuse to house us. And your restaurants can refuse to serve us.

You’re willing to ostracize and marginalize LGBT people to score political points with the extreme right of the Republican Party. You say this bill protects “religious freedom,” but no one is fooled. When I was younger, people used “God’s Will” as a reason to keep the races separate, too. Make no mistake, this is the new segregation, yours is a Jim Crow law, and you are about to make yourself ground zero.

This bill also saddens me deeply. Brad and I have strong ties to Arizona. Brad was born in Phoenix, and we vacation in Show Low. We have close friends and relatives in the state and spend weeks there annually. We even attended the Fourth of July Parade in Show Low in 2012, looking like a pair of Arizona ranchers.

So let me make mine just as 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.

3. You can read his op-ed in its entirety here.

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Graduate student at Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. University of Southern California grad. Diet Coke and Abby Wambach lover.
Contact this reporter at claire.pires@buzzfeed.com
          
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