Lawmakers need to be careful about passing discriminatory bills, because as North Carolina and Georgia are learning, companies and even local governments will refuse to send you any business which could hurt them severely. It’s important to know that your dollars matter, and where you do business matters to each state. Your choice to do business, or not do business in a certain state, could make people think, especially if a group of people all make the same choice at the same time.
In Georgia, a state which has seen a recent resurgence in popularity for film & TV shooting due to the show The Walking Dead which has primarily been filmed there, as well as Disney who has shot a few superhero movies there in recent years. In fact, the Georgia film industry has grown to be worth about $1.7 billion for the state over the past few years! Georgia has a new bill on the books which would allow religious organizations to deny people service who fall into the LGBT category. While those who are for the bill think it will protect religious freedom, those who oppose the bill have said it could be a gateway to discrimination in the important areas of social services and even employment. Thus, the Hollywood film industry which has been taking root in the state has been threatening to leave if this bill does pass in the state, which would be a bad blow to the local economy.
In North Carolina, a bill just passed which blocks transgender people from using the bathroom of their choice (usually the gender they identify as), and forcing them to use the restroom that matches the gender they were born with. It also blocks cities from passing laws and ordinances that would reduce discrimination against LGBT people. In response to this restrictive bill, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee has banned any city employees from traveling to the state for business purposes, and many important Hollywood figures are talking about enacting a boycott of filming projects in the state as well.
Your dollars can talk!
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