If you watched Indiana Governor Mike Pence's appearance on This Week With George Stephanopolous, you likely came away with the same takeaways I did regarding his support for anti-gay discrimination. And if you didn't see it, you can watch the interview below.
The easiest conclusion is that the governor believes people should be able to discriminate against gays and lesbians in his state. Stephanopoulos asked the governor no less than six times if he believed this should be legal, and every time Pence deflected the question, a couple times attacking Stephanopoulos for even asking the question.
People who believe discrimination is wrong freely say that publicly and with pride. It's really easy to do so because it's the right thing to do. Standing with LGBT Americans and opposing discrimination of any kind is as American as amber waves of grain. Every American - Christian, Jewish, black, Asian, immigrant, rich, pool - knows in their heart that rejecting someone for who they are is wrong.
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Pence simply refused to answer the question because he supports discrimination, opposes LGBT rights, and knows he's wrong and unChristian on both issues. While Stephanopoulos stopped short of helping Pence with a clear answer, I will do so here:
The governor does support the right to discriminate and does not want gay, lesbian, bisexual or trans people protected by the law.
My other key takeaways:
1) The governor is very proud of signing SB 101, which legalizes discrimination based on religious beliefs. He said a couple times that he was proud of the bill, and that he does not regret signing it.
2) The "clarification" about the law that the governor is asking for from the state legislature will not protect LGBT people and will not change the discriminatory impact of the law. Pence said it wasn't in his "agenda" to protect gays and lesbians, and he has no intention of doing so. The teeth of this law will not be pulled.
3) His defense is that Bill Clinton signed a similar law 20 years ago. Clinton also signed the Defense of Marriage Act 20 years ago. The nation has changed dramatically in the last two decades, and Clinton has actively fought for marriage equality in recent years. What was wrong 20 years ago is still wrong today.
4) Discrimination in Indiana isn't going to go lightly. Pence dug in his heels in this interview, going on the offensive at every turn. He has no interest in protecting LGBT people or preventing discrimination. He claims this is about religious freedom, but the nation's bullshit meter has gone off.
The NCAA, NFL, Big Ten, USA Diving & USA Gymnastics must all pull their upcoming major sporting events out of Indiana immediately. To keep events there is to approve of legalized discrimination.