Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tense in Tennessee

Tennessee has a dreadful new law. No, I'm not talking about the "Don't Say Gay" bill—that piece of legislative ridiculousness still waits in the wings.

Yesterday Republican Gov. Bill Haslam signed a bill into law abolishing anti-discrimination ordinances passed by cities and counties. The lawmakers were perturbed with Nashville; Music City had the gall to require city contractors play fair with LGBT people.

What a heavy-handed reaction. Combine this law with "Don't Say Gay," which would ban school lessons that relate in any way to homosexuality, and you have to wonder why things are so extreme in Knoxville. The legislators are running around like a lavender-colored sky is about to fall on them.

Dolly Parton, a Tennessee native and a gay ally, should go have a chat with them. She could get them to simmer down and see sense about gay people. Maybe sing the lawmakers a lullaby. If that doesn't calm them, she could always pass out sedatives.