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05/10/2011

Conservatives try to repeal Nashville nondiscrimination; 'Ahhh, that takes me back'

by Jeremy Hooper

I spent seventeen years and eleven months in Mount Juliet, TN. Graduated from Mount Juliet High School. Came of age at the Mount Juliet Little League Park. Ate my weight in scattered, smothered, and covered hashbrowns at the Mount Juliet Waffle House.

And then I left MJ. At the first opportunity I got, in fact, knowing I would never again call it my home. Because while my hometown had considerable charms (e.g. gorgeous landscapes, proximity to Nashville, good double entendre regarding what Romeo might do to his star-crossed love), I knew that it, circa 1997, would never support my life. My truth. My future love. Nothing told me otherwise; much told me so.

So it truly saddens me to see Tennessee state Senator Mae Beavers (R-Mount Juliet) Beaverskeeping that spirit/forced exodus alive, using her locally-harvested power to push onto the state targeted bills that do nothing but repeal existing non-discrimination protections for LGBT people. This report from Daily Journal:

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A proposal that would prohibit local governments from creating anti-discrimination laws that are stricter than the state's is headed for a full Senate vote after passing a Senate panel on Monday.

The measure sponsored by Republican Sen. Mae Beavers of Mt. Juliet was approved 6-3 in the Senate State and Local Government Committee. The companion bill passed the House 73-24 last month.

The proposal would void a Nashville ordinance barring companies that discriminate against gays and lesbians from doing business with the city.

KEEP READING: Bill to void Nashville law against gay and lesbian discrimination headed to full Senate [Daily Journal]

Sen. Beavers: You have a great commodity there among you. Boating with you on Old Hickory Lake. Picnicking near you at Cedar Creek. Driving on the other side of the same road, past the same house that Andrew Jackson called home. And listening to every new idea that local grownups push into the public conversation.

And some of us listen from hundreds of miles away, wondering if benign peace of mind will ever come home to roost.

***

*UPDATE: Beavers is pushing this in tandem with David Fowler, president of the so-called Family Action Council of TN (a Focus on the Family affiliate). At around the 10 minute mark of this very long video, you can watch as Beavers cedes the floor to Fowler. Then stick around when Sen. Thelma Harper (D-Nashville) calls out the coded bill's true intent:











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