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Author: Subject: Georgia Governor vetoes "Religious Liberty" Bill

True Peach





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  posted on 3/28/2016 at 11:59 AM
There is hope!!

http://politics.blog.ajc.com/2016/03/28/breaking-nathan-deal-will-veto-geor gias-religious-liberty-bill/

BREAKING: Nathan Deal vetoes Georgia’s ‘religious liberty’ bill
March 28, 2016 | Filed in: Georgia Legislature, Nathan Deal, Religious liberty bills

Gov. Nathan Deal on Monday vetoed the “religious liberty” bill that triggered a wave of criticism from gay rights groups and business leaders and presented him with one of the most consequential challenges he’s faced since his election to Georgia’s top office.

In a press conference at the state Capitol, Deal said House Bill 757 doesn’t reflect Georgia’s welcoming image as a state full of “warm, friendly and loving people” – and warned critics that he doesn’t respond well to threats of payback for rejecting the measure.

“Our people work side by side without regard to the color of our skin, or the religion we adhere to,” he said. “We are working to make life better for our families and our communities. That is the character of Georgia. I intend to do my part to keep it that way,” he said. “For that reason, I will veto HB 757.”

The two-term Republican has been besieged by all sides over the controversial measure, and his office has received thousands of emails and hundreds of calls on the debate. The tension was amplified by a steady stream of corporate titans who urged him to veto the bill – and threatened to pull investments from Georgia if it became law.

The governor’s planned veto will likely infuriate religious conservatives who considered the measure, House Bill 757, their top priority. This is the third legislative session they’ve sought to strengthen legal protections from opponents of gay marriage, but last year’s Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex weddings galvanized their efforts.

It is also likely to herald a more acrimonious relationship between Deal, who campaigned on a pro-business platform, and the evangelical wing of the Georgia Republican party. Already, prominent conservatives have vowed to revive the measure next year.

The governor, though, had ample cover from the measure’s critics. Executives from dozens of big-name companies, including Disney, Apple, Time Warner, Intel and Salesforce, called on the governor to veto the bill. The NFL warned it could risk Atlanta’s bid for the Super Bowl and the NCAA hinted it could influence the state’s ability to host championship games. And Deal’s office said two economic development prospects have already abandoned Georgia because of the legislation.

They joined with gay rights groups who warned that the measure amounts to legalized discrimination and pointed to the corporate outrage that rocked Indiana after a similar measure was signed into law there.

The legislation, which first surfaced on March 16 and passed both Republican-controlled chambers in hours, would allow faith-based organizations to deny services to those who violate their “sincerely held religious belief” and preserve their right to fire employees who aren’t in accord with those beliefs.

It also mirrors language found in the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which was signed by President Bill Clinton and adopted by dozens of states, requiring government to prove a “compelling governmental interest” before it interferes with a person’s exercise of religion. And it includes a clause saying it could not be used to allow discrimination banned by state or federal law.

Seen by supporters as a “compromise” effort, the measure was swiftly condemned by the Metro Atlanta Chamber, the state’s most influential business group, and by leaders of major international tech corporations.

The Human Rights Campaign called on Hollywood film companies to abandon Georgia if Deal signs the measure, and many issued threats that they would. Each of Atlanta’s pro sports franchises criticized the measure, as did the owner of the Atlanta Falcons.

It was far from a one-sided fight, however. The conservative Faith and Freedom Coalition launched robo-calls backing the measure, and the Georgia Baptist Mission Board marshaled its 1.3 million members to rally around the bill. State Sen. Josh McKoon and other prominent supporters cast it as a way to protect faith-based beliefs.

“I’m extremely disappointed,” McKoon, R-Columbus, told WBUR Boston shortly after the veto. “This bill had been significantly watered down. It did not apply to businesses. I’m just very, very disappointed the governor would veto this modest protection for people of faith.”

Still, Deal’s decision to veto the measure did not come as a surprise.

In stark terms, the governor said earlier this year that he would reject any measure that “allows discrimination in our state in order to protect people of faith.” Rooting his critique in biblical language, he urged fellow Republicans to take a deep breath and “recognize that the world is changing around us.”

He is also the rare statewide politician who can afford to infuriate a wide swath of his party’s base. As a term-limited governor with no further political ambitions, he never has to face the voters again.

Yet his decision will likely influence the remainder of his term, which ends in January 2019.

The “religious liberty” debate resonates like few others among the activists that make up the Georgia Republican base – a group that gave the legislation a ringing endorsement at the Georgia GOP’s 2015 convention. He’ll need many of those same rank-and-file Republicans next year when he unveils his plan to “revolutionize” the state’s education system.

Already, several conservative lawmakers have owed to call for a “veto session” to rebuke the governor if he rejects the measure. It takes a three-fifth majority in both chambers to call a special session, and a two-thirds majority in both chambers to override a veto — a threshold the bill failed to reach by one vote in the Senate and 16 in the House.

State Sen. Bill Heath, one of the chamber’s most conservative lawmakers, said he’s confident a “veto session” will be successful.

“We will call for a veto session,” Heath said. “And we have the votes.”

The governor, who didn’t take any questions after his remarks, anticipated the pushback.

“I don’t respond well to insults or threats,” he said.

In the final stretch of the legislative session, which ended early Friday morning, Deal said he would act “expeditiously” on the major bills but betrayed little over which way he was leaning. He also said he’s heard the concerns loud and clear from all sides of the debate.

“What will happen will happen,” he said shortly after the measure passed. “I will try to use my best judgement to do what the people of Georgia elected me to do, and that was to make the best decision for the people of this state as a whole.”



[Edited on 3/28/2016 by gondicar]

 

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Maximum Peach



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  posted on 3/28/2016 at 12:59 PM
In this case it was the voice of corporate citizens that activated the Governor. Indeed there is hope.

 

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  posted on 3/28/2016 at 04:13 PM
http://www.slate.com/blogs/outward/2016/02/22/georgia_religious_liberty_bil l_spurs_373k_company_to_move_to_nevada.html

This was passed in Georgia in February.


Why do the LGBT etc. communities feel that they have to keep pushing legislation that highlights their sexual choices?

Can't they just go about their business in the bedroom in private and stop flaunting it in front of everyone else?

Why do people's sexual orientations need to come up as workplace issues? Sex does not belong in the workplace. Do your job, go about your personal business in your private life on your time, on your own terms. Stop bringing your sexual orientation into the workplace. Forcing others to pretend they like you and your choices after you disclose these things, that they do not need to know about, is a form of sexual harassment to other people. Nobody should be forced to hear about someone else's sex life at work. That creates a hostile work environment which is a federal law and people have a right, a protected right to not have to endure that.



[Edited on 3/28/2016 by gina]

 

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  posted on 3/28/2016 at 05:27 PM
quote:
Why do the LGBT etc. communities feel that they have to keep pushing legislation that highlights their sexual choices?

Can't they just go about their business in the bedroom in private and stop flaunting it in front of everyone else?

Why do people's sexual orientations need to come up as workplace issues?

Because there are bigots who will make it an issue, including bosses who deny opporunutues to LGBT people only because they are LGBT.

People have pictures of their families on their desks and office walls...kids on family vacations, that kind of stuff. People talk about what they did on the weekends with their wives, husbands, boyfriends, girlfriends, kids, grandkids. It has nothing to do with sex, it has to do with everyday life and things we do outside of work. When LGBT people can't share their stories or display their photos of their husbands, wives, boyfriends, girlfriends because they are the same sex as they are because they fear the discrimination which will result, that is a problem.

Why are YOU making it about sex???




[Edited on 3/28/2016 by gondicar]

 

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  posted on 3/28/2016 at 05:41 PM
quote:
Why do the LGBT etc. communities feel that they have to keep pushing legislation that highlights their sexual choices?


The LGBT community didn't push anything. The bigoted and homophobic Georgia Legislature passed a bill making it legal to discriminate against gay people. The LGBT community, and right thinking corporations, responded to the extreme, hate filled, bigoted legislation.

How in the world did you get that twisted around?

[Edited on 3/28/2016 by BillyBlastoff]

 

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  posted on 3/28/2016 at 08:13 PM
quote:


Can't they just go about their business in the bedroom in private and stop flaunting it in front of everyone else?


[Edited on 3/28/2016 by gina]


But OK for straight people to do it? I could care less what straight or gay people do. None of my concern nor any of my business. Why can't people just be people without legislators trying to inflict their narrow minded beliefs on the people? Looks like business just trumped the narrow minded in this case.

 

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  posted on 3/28/2016 at 09:42 PM
I don't care what anybody says...lesbian, gay and bisexual is one thing, but the transgender part of the equation is just weird. Taking off your girl or boy parts and putting on the opposite parts is weird.
 

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  posted on 3/28/2016 at 09:44 PM
quote:
I don't care what anybody says...lesbian, gay and bisexual is one thing, but the transgender part of the equation is just weird. Taking off your girl or boy parts and putting on the opposite parts is weird.


With all due respect, that's not a legal argument.

Or a Constitutional one.

 

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  posted on 3/28/2016 at 10:02 PM
I wasn't making either, it is just weird. So are tattoos all over a person's face or piercings in genitals.

When did the who gay rights thing make the leap to include transexual people? Maybe it has, personally this isn't something I spend any time on one way or the other, I just don't recall the transvestite or transgender or whatever name they use for it being included before more than a few years ago.


 

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  posted on 3/29/2016 at 06:06 PM
quote:
I don't care what anybody says...lesbian, gay and bisexual is one thing, but the transgender part of the equation is just weird. Taking off your girl or boy parts and putting on the opposite parts is weird.


Some of the people who do that really feel that they were a man or female born into the wrong body, so they want to live the life they feel they should have had from the beginning. I don't know what that feels like so I can't criticize anyone on that point.

My point is why does anyone's sex life/orientation have to come into the workplace,or anyplace else? Why can't they just live their lives, show some manners and discretion and just go about their sex life behind closed doors with their partners. We already have laws that allow that. There is no discrimination in housing etc.

Nobody will know their sexual orientation if they are going out with a same sex person do dinner or whatever, unless they are grabbing, groping, etc. all they have to do is keep that stuff private, which is how it should be in the first place no matter what someone's preference is.

They want approval from everyone else, and we don't need to know about it. They need to do their business in the bedroom and leave the rest of the world out of it. Why do they need to bring the entire world into their sex lives? They are trying to force the rest of the world to say they agree with what they have chosen. We have a right not to agree.



[Edited on 3/29/2016 by gina]

 

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  posted on 3/30/2016 at 10:57 AM
quote:
quote:
I don't care what anybody says...lesbian, gay and bisexual is one thing, but the transgender part of the equation is just weird. Taking off your girl or boy parts and putting on the opposite parts is weird.


Some of the people who do that really feel that they were a man or female born into the wrong body, so they want to live the life they feel they should have had from the beginning. I don't know what that feels like so I can't criticize anyone on that point.

My point is why does anyone's sex life/orientation have to come into the workplace,or anyplace else? Why can't they just live their lives, show some manners and discretion and just go about their sex life behind closed doors with their partners. We already have laws that allow that. There is no discrimination in housing etc.

Nobody will know their sexual orientation if they are going out with a same sex person do dinner or whatever, unless they are grabbing, groping, etc. all they have to do is keep that stuff private, which is how it should be in the first place no matter what someone's preference is.

They want approval from everyone else, and we don't need to know about it. They need to do their business in the bedroom and leave the rest of the world out of it. Why do they need to bring the entire world into their sex lives? They are trying to force the rest of the world to say they agree with what they have chosen. We have a right not to agree.



[Edited on 3/29/2016 by gina]


I'll ask again, why are YOU making it about sex?

People have pictures of their families on their desks and office walls...kids on family vacations, that kind of stuff. People talk about what they did on the weekends with their wives, husbands, boyfriends, girlfriends, kids, grandkids. It has nothing to do with sex, it has to do with everyday life and things we do outside of work. When LGBT people can't share their stories or display their photos of their husbands, wives, boyfriends, girlfriends because they are the same sex as they are because they fear the discrimination which will result, that is a problem.

Are you saying that everyone, straight gay or otherwise, should stay in the closet when it comes to the life outside the workplace? That no one should ever talk about their husbands, wives or significant others? That only straight people (or no one) should kiss their spouse goodbye when they get dropped off at work? That no one should talk about going out on a date the night or weekend before, and that all conversation about relationships outside work (along with anything that references anything about life outside work, like family photos, etc) should be off limits at the workplace? Or just off limits to LGBT people?




[Edited on 3/30/2016 by gondicar]

 

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  posted on 3/30/2016 at 11:25 AM
Gondi you are making excellent and valid points. Any reasonable person should understand that the folks in the LGBT community are just people and deserve all the same rights that straight people deserve.

Gina's believe that LGBT people need their sex lives "approved" is as ridiculous as it is unfounded. LGBT people want their right to live like everyone else. I don't think people like Gina can get over their own personal prejudice and will sadly never see people as just people.

 

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  posted on 3/31/2016 at 09:40 AM
With all due respect to any posters that may be from there, I'm not surprised at all that Mississippi would go this route...

Mississippi Passes Most Anti-LGBT “Religious Freedom” Bill To Date
Alan Jude Ryland | March 31, 2016

Wednesday evening, the Mississippi Senate approved a sweeping anti-LGBT religious freedom measure. Republican lawmakers hold a majority in both chambers; they believe the bill addresses issues created for people of faith by the Supreme Court’s 2015 marriage equality ruling.

House Bill 1523, or the “Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act,” allows individuals, businesses and government employees (including counseling services, foster care and adoption services), nonprofits and other entities to refuse goods and services to LGBT people and anyone who has had extramarital sex on religious grounds. The bill also defines “male” and “female” as someone’s “immutable biological sex as objectively determined by anatomy and genetics at time of birth,” protecting those who decline treatments, surgeries and counseling related to sex reassignment or gender and identity transitioning. HB 1523 prohibits the government from taking action against individuals and faith-based institutions who act according to their “religious convictions.”

GOP Sen. Jenifer Branning introduced the bill, but says it does not allow for any discrimination. “As a matter of fact, it’s quite the opposite,” Branning said. “It’s about protecting the religious freedom of those who don’t feel they can with a clean conscience assist a same-sex couple.”

Human Rights Campaign (HRC) President Chad Griffin criticized the legislation. “This legislation moves Mississippi backward, undermining equality for its residents and jeopardizing its ability to attract and retain fair-minded businesses,” Griffin said. “Governor Byrant should be paying close attention to the backlash against discrimination in Georgia, where Gov. Nathan Deal vetoed a terrible anti-LGBT bill, and in North Carolina, where fair-minded people and the broader business community are calling on state leaders to repudiate and repeal the discriminatory law passed last week. Mississippi’s economy and its reputation hang in the balance.”

Griffin’ statement comes two days after Georgia Governor Nathan Deal vetoed a bill that would have allowed businesses to deny services to LGBT people on religious grounds. “I do not think we have to discriminate against anyone to protect the faith-based community in the state of Georgia,” Deal said in a statement.

And last Wednesday evening, the North Carolina legislature passed a bill that overturns local gay and transgender protections in a special one-day session that cost taxpayers approximately $42,000. Governor Pat McCrory signed the bill into law mere hours after its introduction. The bill was a direct response to a prior nondiscrimination ordinance in the city of Charlotte, which had offered a wide range of protections. Most notably, the Charlotte ordinance allowed citizens to use the restroom that best matches their gender identity. State lawmakers acted ostensibly out of concern that women and children could be victimized by sexual predators posing as transgender to enter women’s restrooms.

Both states faced swift condemnation from business leaders. Bank of America, which has its headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, announced it was joining over 80 chief executives, including Twitter and Square CEO Jack Dorsey and Apple CEO Tim Cook, in opposing the new legislation.

FULL ARTICLE: http://secondnexus.com/politics-and-economics/mississippi-religious-freedom -bill/



[Edited on 3/31/2016 by gondicar]

 

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  posted on 4/1/2016 at 07:50 AM
Here is the actual bill:

"To protect religious freedoms: to amend Chapter 3 of Title 19 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to marriage generally, so as to provide that religious officials shall not be required to perform marriage
ceremonies, perform rites,or administer sacraments in violation of their legal right to free exercise of religion: to amend Chapter 1 of Title 10 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to selling and other trade practices so as to change certain provisions relating to days of rest for employees of business and industry: to protect property owners which are religious organizations against infringement of religious freedom: to provide for
related matters: to provide an effective date: to repeal conflicting laws: and for other purposes.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF GEORGIA

Section 1.

Chapter 3 of Title 19 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to marriage generally, is amended by adding a new Code section to read as follows:
"19-13-11.
(a) No minister of the gospel or cleric or religious practitioner ordained or authorized to solemnize marriages, perform rites, or administer sacraments according to the usages of the denomination, when acting in his or her official religious capacity, shall be required to solemnize any marriage, perform any rite, or administer any sacrament in violation of his or her right to free exercise of religion under the Constitution of this state or of the United States.
(b) A refusal by an ordained or authorized person pursuant to subsection (a) of this Code section shall not give rise to a civil claim or cause of action against such person or result in any state action to penalize, withhold benefits from, or discriminate against such person based on such refusal."

Section 2

Chapter 1 of Title 10 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to selling and other trade practices, is amended by revising Code Section 10-1-573, relating to day of rest for employees of business and industry, as follows:
"10-1-573.
(a) Any business or industry which operates on either of the two rest days (Saturday or Sunday) and employs those whose habitual day of worship has been chosen by the employer as a day of work shall make all the reasonable accommodations to the religious, social, and physical needs of such employees may enjoy the same benefits as employees in other occupations.
(b) No business or industry shall be required by ordinance or resolution of any county, municipality, or consolidated government to operate on either of the two rest days (Saturday or Sunday)."

Section 3.

Said chapter is further amended by adding a new article to read as follows:

"ARTICLE 35

10-1-1000.
(a) As used in this Code section, the term 'religious organization' means a church, a religious school, an association or convention of churches, a convention mission agency, or an integrated auxiliary of a church or a convention of churches, when such entity is qualified as an exempt religious organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended.
(b) No religious organization shall be required to rent, lease, or otherwise grant permission for property to be used by another person for an event which is objectionable to such religious organization.
(c) A refusal by a religious organization pursuant to subsection (b) of this Code section shall not give rise to a civil claim or cause of action against such religious organization or an employee thereof or result in any state action to penalize, withhold benefits from, or discriminate against the religious organization or employee based on such refusal."

SECTION 4.

This Act shall become effective upon it's approval by the Governor or upon its becoming law without such approval.
All laws and parts of laws in conflict with this Act are repealed.

I thought some of you would like to read what you're making comments on

 

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  posted on 4/1/2016 at 08:14 AM
Thanks for posting the bill, but I do not ever plan to live in Georgia so I shall not read it.

Edit: should have included a smiley face -

[Edited on 4/1/2016 by heineken515]

 

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  posted on 4/1/2016 at 10:29 AM
Mississippi ranks #51 out of the states and DC in education.

Perhaps they'll secede. Georgia can go, too.


 

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  posted on 4/1/2016 at 12:05 PM
It looks like the threat of loss of revenue, trumps religious wacko's and bigoted crackers feelings.
 

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  posted on 4/1/2016 at 12:29 PM
quote:
It looks like the threat of loss of revenue, trumps religious wacko's and bigoted crackers feelings.


Even in the Baptist south, the Love Of Money trumps (no pun intended) the love of God sometimes...

Wish we were that greedy here in NC. It's worse than in GA. Feel like I'm going further and further back in time the longer I live here.

 

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  posted on 4/1/2016 at 03:25 PM
quote:
quote:
It looks like the threat of loss of revenue, trumps religious wacko's and bigoted crackers feelings.


Even in the Baptist south, the Love Of Money trumps (no pun intended) the love of God sometimes...

Wish we were that greedy here in NC. It's worse than in GA. Feel like I'm going further and further back in time the longer I live here.


Yep.

I've read up on plenty of the actions by the governor and legislators of NC. Definitely politicians more suited for 100 years ago. Time moves on, but they come kicking, suppressing, and screaming.

 

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  posted on 4/1/2016 at 03:29 PM
quote:
quote:
It looks like the threat of loss of revenue, trumps religious wacko's and bigoted crackers feelings.


Even in the Baptist south, the Love Of Money trumps (no pun intended) the love of God sometimes...

Wish we were that greedy here in NC. It's worse than in GA. Feel like I'm going further and further back in time the longer I live here.

Brofan, I also live in NC, and the things that have gone on here in the past few years astound me. I agree with you, it feels like we're in a time machine and it's not taking us back to better days.

 

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  posted on 4/1/2016 at 04:06 PM
quote:
quote:
quote:
It looks like the threat of loss of revenue, trumps religious wacko's and bigoted crackers feelings.


Even in the Baptist south, the Love Of Money trumps (no pun intended) the love of God sometimes...

Wish we were that greedy here in NC. It's worse than in GA. Feel like I'm going further and further back in time the longer I live here.

Brofan, I also live in NC, and the things that have gone on here in the past few years astound me. I agree with you, it feels like we're in a time machine and it's not taking us back to better days.


Where do you live, Bob? Man, I wish I had known that - I would have loved to hit a show with you or just get together and talk about all things Allman (among other things *laugh*).

I've been here since '05 and don't regret moving here at all, loved almost every minute of it. But after visiting Austin again (for the 5th or 6th time, can't remember which) last month, as well as Gulf Shores, Al., New Orleans, Memphis, Nashville, and Atlanta - yes, it was an EPIC road trip - I realized it's time to move again.

Hopefully I'll be installed in Austin by summer. Man, I CANNOT wait! I realize the NC legislature reads their putts based on what the Texas legislature does, and then tries to out-conservative them, but being able to live in Austin will make it bearable, to say the least.

[Edited on 4/1/2016 by brofan]

 

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  posted on 4/2/2016 at 07:20 AM
quote:
Thanks for posting the bill, but I do not ever plan to live in Georgia so I shall not read it.

Edit: should have included a smiley face -

[Edited on 4/1/2016 by heineken515]


No problem. I don't plan to ever live in NY sate (or California) because of some of their wack job politicians, so I understand your reasoning.

 

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  posted on 4/2/2016 at 07:23 AM
quote:
quote:
It looks like the threat of loss of revenue, trumps religious wacko's and bigoted crackers feelings.


Even in the Baptist south, the Love Of Money trumps (no pun intended) the love of God sometimes...



So true. Several new designs for the state flag have been bandied about in several papers. One depicting a man bent over with someone pulling money out of his backside. Remember a few years ago we changed the flag twice in one year.

 

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Zen Peach



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  posted on 4/2/2016 at 12:10 PM
quote:

Brofan, I also live in NC, and the things that have gone on here in the past few years astound me. I agree with you, it feels like we're in a time machine and it's not taking us back to better days.



I know I have mentioned this before, but my wife and I have visited Asheville a few times and really like it there. We were talking to a store clerk, and she said that Asheville was "a blue dot in a sea of red" ......

 

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Peach Master



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  posted on 4/2/2016 at 12:17 PM
quote:
No problem. I don't plan to ever live in NY sate (or California) because of some of their wack job politicians, so I understand your reasoning.


Are your for real? No politician in NY is interested in citizens' bedrooms, bathrooms, or reproduction..


 
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