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Also Tuesday, the Indianapolis Star urged Indiana lawmakers in a front-page editorial to respond to widespread criticism of a new law by protecting the rights of gays and lesbians.
The Star’s editorial, headlined “FIX THIS NOW,” covered the newspaper’s entire front page. It called for lawmakers to enact a law that would prohibit discrimination on the basis of a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.
The newspaper says the uproar sparked by the law has “done enormous harm” to the state and potentially to its economic future.
Meanwhile, Arkansas was poised to follow Indiana in enacting a law despite increasing criticism from businesses and gay-rights advocates who call the laws a license to discriminate against gays and lesbians.
Article continues belowThe Arkansas House could vote as early as Tuesday on a proposal that would prohibit state and local governments from infringing on a person’s religious beliefs without a “compelling” reason. And unlike in Indiana – where Republicans were figuring out how to clarify that their law isn’t meant to discriminate – Arkansas lawmakers said they won’t modify their measure.
In Indiana, the fallout has ranged from the public-employee union known as AFSCME canceling a planned women’s conference in Indianapolis this year because of the law to the band Wilco saying it was canceling a May performance.
Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe issued an open letter to Indiana corporations saying Virginia is a business-friendly state that does “not discriminate against our friends and neighbors.” Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel sent letters to more than a dozen Indiana businesses, urging them to relocate to a “welcoming place to people of all races, faiths and countries of origin.”
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