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Look: Thousands Protest Anti-Gay ‘Religious Freedom’ Law At Indiana Statehouse (Photos)

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An estimated 3000 people from all walks of life joined together to protest an anti-LGBT law disguised as “religious freedom” legislation.

Ever since Indiana lawmakers passed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act on Monday, calls denouncing it have grown increasingly louder – and more effective. Despite criticism from local citizens, legal experts, and corporations that do business in Indiana, Republican Governor Mike Pence decided to sign the discriminatory legislation into law in a private ceremony, surrounded by local religious leaders on Thursday.

That’s when, excuse the phrase, all hell broke loose.

Within hours, major companies were warning they would pull back investments in Indiana and ban employee travel to the state. Within a day, everyone from the White House to the City of San Francisco, to Broadway’s Audra McDonald, to Hillary Clinton spoke out against the new anti-gay law.

LISTEN: Indiana Restaurant Owner Says He Discriminates Against Gays, Glad The Law Supports Him Now

Not only those notables, but Indiana-based Angie’s List, Apple, Inc.’s Tim Cook, the City of Seattle,$4 billion software firm Salesforce, $50 million annual gaming convention Gen Con, Fortune 500 member Cummins, Eskenazi Health, Eli Lilly and Co., Yelp, George Takei, Pat McAfee, Jason Collins, Ashton Kutcher, Miley Cyrus, James Van Der Beek, Sophia Bush, Dustin Lance Black, Mara Wilson, Jack Antonoff, the Mayor of Indianapolis, and the State of Indiana’s own tourism board, and many, many others have all voiced upset, anger, and frustration, or decided to take action to protect employees, in response to the law.

On Saturday afternoon, about 3000 citizens, gay, straight, Black, white, Republican, Democratic, secular, religious, joined together in a rally to support the LGBT community – seen as the target of the law – and to denounce lawmakers and Governor Pence for enabling and promoting discrimination.

 

Image, top, by Shannon Houser via Twitter

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‘End Systemic Racism’: Bush 43 Delivers Rare, Silent Rebuke to Trump – Calls for Law Enforcement to ‘Protect’ Protestors

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Republican former President George W. Bush has been almost entirely silent during the tenures of both his successors, but on Tuesday the 43rd President of the United States issued a stunningly strong statement in support of the hundreds of thousands if not millions of Americans protesting the police killing of George Floyd.

It is a remarkable moment, given that former presidents almost never criticize those who follow them, especially when they are members of the same party.

And while never mentioning the current President’s name, Bush’s intentions are quite clear – and his words are quite clearly a silent rebuke to President Trump.

President Bush said he and the First Lady “are anguished by the brutal suffocation of George Floyd and disturbed by the injustice and fear that suffocate our country.”

He called this a “time for America to examine our tragic failures – and as we do, we will also see some of our redeeming strengths,” and wrote that it “remains a shocking failure that many African Americans, especially young African American men, are harassed and threatened in their own country.”

“It is a strength when protesters, protected by responsible law enforcement, march for a better future. This tragedy — in a long series of similar tragedies — raises a long overdue question: How do we end systemic racism in our society?”

Read the Bush’s full statement, via CNN:

“Laura and I are anguished by the brutal suffocation of George Floyd and disturbed by the injustice and fear that suffocate our country. Yet we have resisted the urge to speak out, because this is not the time for us to lecture. It is time for us to listen. It is time for America to examine our tragic failures – and as we do, we will also see some of our redeeming strengths.
It remains a shocking failure that many African Americans, especially young African American men, are harassed and threatened in their own country. It is a strength when protesters, protected by responsible law enforcement, march for a better future. This tragedy — in a long series of similar tragedies — raises a long overdue question: How do we end systemic racism in our society? The only way to see ourselves in a true light is to listen to the voices of so many who are hurting and grieving. Those who set out to silence those voices do not understand the meaning of America — or how it becomes a better place.
America’s greatest challenge has long been to unite people of very different backgrounds into a single nation of justice and opportunity. The doctrine and habits of racial superiority, which once nearly split our country, still threaten our Union. The answers to American problems are found by living up to American ideals — to the fundamental truth that all human beings are created equal and endowed by God with certain rights. We have often underestimated how radical that quest really is, and how our cherished principles challenge systems of intended or assumed injustice. The heroes of America — from Frederick Douglass, to Harriet Tubman, to Abraham Lincoln, to Martin Luther King, Jr. — are heroes of unity. Their calling has never been for the fainthearted. They often revealed the nation’s disturbing bigotry and exploitation — stains on our character sometimes difficult for the American majority to examine. We can only see the reality of America’s need by seeing it through the eyes of the threatened, oppressed, and disenfranchised.
That is exactly where we now stand. Many doubt the justice of our country, and with good reason. Black people see the repeated violation of their rights without an urgent and adequate response from American institutions. We know that lasting justice will only come by peaceful means. Looting is not liberation, and destruction is not progress. But we also know that lasting peace in our communities requires truly equal justice. The rule of law ultimately depends on the fairness and legitimacy of the legal system. And achieving justice for all is the duty of all.
This will require a consistent, courageous, and creative effort. We serve our neighbors best when we try to understand their experience. We love our neighbors as ourselves when we treat them as equals, in both protection and compassion. There is a better way — the way of empathy, and shared commitment, and bold action, and a peace rooted in justice. I am confident that together, Americans will choose the better way.”

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RULE OF LAW?

Local DC Reporter: ‘Major Movement of Military Hardware and Personnel’ Into Downtown Washington

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A local Washington, D.C. reporter posted video of a huge military vehicle emblazoned with the word “flammable” on its side, which he says is driving on the streets of the nation’s capital. This comes just one day after President Donald Trump told the nation’s governors to “dominate” the streets and increase the presence of the National Guard and other law enforcement agencies.

“Seeing a major movement of military hardware and personnel on the streets of downtown DC today as #GeorgeFloyd protests continue,” Tom Fitzgerald of Fox affiliate Fox5 reported via Twitter.

Fitzgerald says the military vehicles now have “a much wider footprint” than yesterday.

Several social media users u=identified the truck as a tanker used to carry airplane/aviation fuel.

Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser is opposed to the militarization of her city.

Trump has far more control over Washington, D.C. than the states because it has no governor.

 

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ABDICATION OF RESPONSIBILITY

‘Sorry I’m Late for Lunch’: Reporter Asks 17 Republicans About Trump’s Church Photo Op and Posted Their Answers

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NBC News Capitol Hill Correspondent Kasie Hunt asked 17 top GOP Senators what they thought of President Donald Trump’s Monday evening photo op, where he had Lafayette Park and St. John’s Church cleared of protestors by teargassing them.

Usually reporters might use one or two of the responses in a news story, but Hunt, who is also the host of MSNBC’s “Kasie DC,” decided to tweet out their responses.

Among the Senators she asked – not all answered – are the only African-American Republican, Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, Sen. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee, and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.

Two offered up “late for lunch” responses, four refused to offer any answer, and one blamed the protestors for an “abuse of power.”

Take a look:

Image via Facebook

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