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Friday, October 28, 2016

This week, in response to yet another heinous law meant to discriminate against LGBT fellow humans, Honey Maid tweeted, “We believe love is always welcome.” And it illustrated it with a picture of graham crackers nibbled into the shape of Indiana.

This Buckeye sure did love that.

Now, the Teddy Grahams company has been up to this no-good kind of lovin’ for a while. For a whole year, even.

Last March, the company launched an ad campaign titled “This Is Wholesome.” The video — with 8,119,352 YouTube views as of 4:51 p.m. EDT on Wednesday — opened with a scene of two daddies cuddling their newborn. Before anyone could even scream “Emma Jean, get in here and look at this!” the screen segued to images of a biracial couple and their three gorgeous children. They were all smiling, too. We’re talking coronary time for anyone who still thinks Jesus was as pale as the governor of Indiana, minus the snow-white hair.

Honey Maid was hit hard with angry tweets and hate letters. So the company printed all of them and hired two female artists — communists, probably — to do something pretty with them. The artists rolled the sheets of paper into cylinders and glue gunned them to spell the word “Love.” Then they surrounded it with a giant cloud made from tubes of positive mail, which outnumbered the hate 10-to-1.

Honey Maid made a video of that, too, with 4,205,002 YouTube views, last time I checked.

I mention all of this because I can’t believe no one in the Republican-controlled Indiana legislature remembered the Honey Maid thing. As an Ohioan and fellow Midwesterner who has visited many a Hoosier over the years, I know for a fact that graham crackers are as much a part of our mutual culinary tradition as beefsteak tomatoes and anything deep-fried at a county fair.

Surely, somebody had to know that pretending to pass a bill that would defend a religion in no need of defending while empowering bigots to refuse service to the LGBT community was going to end up as a tweet with graham crackers nibbled into the shape of their beloved Indiana.

Not to mention the national outrage and ridicule that shoved Indiana Gov. Mike Pence into a spotlight of his own making the minute he claimed this was all a misunderstanding and the media’s fault.

“We’ve got a perception problem here,” he said.

“This was a perception problem,” he said again.

“I understand the perception of this has gone far afield of what the law really is.”

And those journalists? Jesus help them, because Pence sure wants nothing to do with ’em.

“Ridiculous,” he said. “Irresponsible.” Even “sloppy,” which, OK, having spent two decades in a newsroom, I’ll give him that. But still.

On Tuesday, The Indianapolis Star — published in Indianapolis, I guess we should stress — ran a Page One editorial under a black-and-white banner reading, “FIX THIS NOW.”

An excerpt: “The consequences will only get worse if our state leaders delay in fixing the deep mess created. Half steps will not be enough. Half steps will not undo the damage.

“Only bold action — action that sends an unmistakable message to the world that our state will not tolerate discrimination against any of its citizens — will be enough to reverse the damage.

“Gov. Mike Pence and the General Assembly need to enact a state law to prohibit discrimination in employment, housing, education and public accommodations on the basis of a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.”

In the meantime, the number of companies, celebrities, and regular American citizens vowing to boycott Indiana grows with every day of delay.

I’ve been hearing from a number of readers who say it’s not fair to punish businesses that would never dream of discriminating against customers for their sexual orientation. They object to attempts to depict all Hoosiers as anti-gay.

Lots of good people live in Indiana, they say.

My response: You’re right. It’s not fair.

How does it feel?

The only reason the LGBT community has been on the receiving end of so much unfair treatment for so long is that too many good people think fighting injustice is somebody else’s job.

Pick up the phone, dear Hoosiers. Or sit down at your keyboards and write to your legislators and governor. Better yet, pull on your shoes and go make some noise.

Now, I know you don’t need this Buckeye telling you what to do.

Prove it.

Connie Schultz is a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and an essayist for Parade magazine. She is the author of two books, including
…and His Lovely Wife, which chronicled the successful race of her husband, Sherrod Brown, for the U.S. Senate. To find out more about Connie Schultz ([email protected]) and read her past columns, please visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at


Photo: OUTFest in Lafayette, Indiana (Rob Slaven/Flickr)

  • Dominick Vila

    The protestations by those who claim the new Indiana law does not endorse or support discrimination become a manifestation of cynicism or an overt lie when we hear business owners in Indiana asserting that they will refuse service to gays and lesbians. The new law is not about freedom, as most people interpret that privilege, but about the suppression of freedom for those whose choices or physique are different from what the dominant segment of the population of about 20 states prefer.

    • TheSkalawag929

      It’s only the “dominate” segment because too few of the “good people” make time to get out and vote.

      • The “good people” are outnumbered by people voting multible times, and illegals. It’s the “democrats” way of assuring the complete demise of America.

        • TheSkalawag929

          I know where you pulled that from. You should have left that out in the pasture where you found it instead of posting it here.
          All you have to do is look at the reaction to the Indiana “Right to Discriminate” law and you will see that your reply is nothing more than bovine excrement.

          • Liberals always back the destruction of America and its morals.

          • charleo1

            And Wingers always assume their Right to arbitrate what those morals supposedly are, for the rest of us. What about the intrinsic immorality of the pomposity that gives rise to this perceived authority? What’s to said about the sound principle of minding one’s own business? Or the overwhelming desire the Right butt out, and follow it?

          • You’re kidding , right? The liberals are the ones that preach “political correctness”. Liberals want to control every aspect of our lives.

          • charleo1

            By what law, or laws do you base your opinion on, that Liberals, “want,” to control every aspect of our lives?” By what law, or laws, are Liberals attempting to abridge, or deny the Civil Rights of some Americans? That the institutions of religion itself, doesn’t already purpose the Divine Authority to control? That these RFRA Laws seek to sanction with the power of the State. Corporations such as Walmart are not exactly bastions of “Liberal Social correctness.” And are also not opposed to religious freedom. So, perhaps you’re missing something elemental about the issue?Ever consider that? Of course you haven’t.

          • TheSkalawag929

            charleo1 I hope that your questions and comments are rhetorical because kendeb has shown that to expect a reasoned response from him/her is a waste of time.

          • charleo1

            Right. Well, he usually doesn’t talk to me anyway. But, I was curious if he actually understood the issue.

          • TheSkalawag929

            I really don’t think understanding is a priority in their case. Just the aroma of the funk from stirring the excrement.

          • TheSkalawag929

            “political correctness”: the avoidance, often considered by right-wingers as taken to extremes, of forms of expression or action that are perceived to exclude, marginalize, or insult groups of people who are socially disadvantaged or discriminated against.
            I see nothing wrong with not intentionally insulting people. Do you?
            It’s not Liberals passing laws controlling every aspect of peoples lives. That would be you right-wing theocratic zealots.
            Is that un-politically correct enough for you?

          • James Bagley

            Not every aspect of your life — just the despicable behavior. You can frolic around in your tutu to your heart’s content in the privacy of your own trailer, but when you interact with real people you are required to conduct yourself in a way that does not discriminate against the rights of others. I could offer you many good reasons why you should behave yourself accordingly, but that would be rather superfluous since your will be forced to behave whether you like it or not.

          • TheSkalawag929

            Liberals founded this country. If you don’t believe me check out the position of conservatives at the time. You’ll find that they were loyal to the crown not the ideals that this country was founded on.
            As to the manifesto that you quote, There are crackpots within the ranks of every faction that can be pointed to. That doesn’t make them the voice of the majority.

          • Dave

            Would those same liberals help Iran get Nuclear weapons. As they well death to American?

          • Of course they would. Traitors all.

          • charleo1

            Really Kenndeb? Wherever men are together? In movie house bathrooms? What’s playing? American Sniper? Congress I can believe. Seminaries, Priest Holes, perhaps. But, truck stops? Really? Truck stops? Light my fire in a truck stop?

          • Budjob

            Kenny my boy,Heaps sees,but fews knows,lots start,but nobody goes,make dates,but can’t fill em,see snakes,but can’t kill em.So,honk your horn,and toot your tooter,there goes fuckface on his motor scooter!! Figure it out you fucking moron!

          • dtgraham

            That was written strictly as satire in the “Gay Community News”, meant to make fun of conservative homophobes at the time. That was just humour. Do you think they literally intended to try that? To infer that is obviously nuts.

            So, what else do you have from the World Net Daily?

        • BillP

          Hey Einstein the word is “multiple” not “multible” then again why should I expect anything intelligent to come from a Neanderthal like yourself. As usual you make a comment without any proof to back it up, par for the course for you.

          • I’m so glad you have found a purpose for your miserable life. Besides being a good communist minion, you are also good at being a spellcheck. Good for you. I think mentally handicapped people like you should have something to do.

          • Budjob

            YHi Kenny baby,You sound like an individual that would throw both ends of a rope to a drowning man.I’m back FUCKFACE!!!

          • For you, I would throw an anchor.

          • Budjob

            Kenny Fascist,I would imagine that there are individuals that wish they were better strangers with you!! As an afterthought,you would make a terrific stand up comedian.After all,you have unlimited material,it’s called the Republican party.

          • Budjob

            Kenny Boy,I would like to remind you that a hard on DOES NOT count as personal growth! Come on Benito,try and out motherfuck me.Bring it on!!!

          • BillP

            I don’t need spell check to find errors in your lame writing skills. You are too lazy to proofread even your limited comments. All you can do is call people ridiculous names like “a good communist minion”. Actually that would very far from the truth, but that’s something you can never comprehend. As for your totally insensitive comment about me being a mentally handicapped person that shows your lack of class and grace. Typical for a low intelligent troll like yourself, kendoll. You should stick with your smokes and beer because the more you write the more you reveal yourself as an intolerant, biased, uniformed, bitter old man.

          • James Bagley

            I see that you still have not spoken with your doctor about your low-T problem. Please take some advice and seek medical attention — it must be just awful living as a sniveling, cowardly, resentful, simpering, fearful pantywaist. They can successfully treat such conditions these days — honest.

        • Dave

          Kenndeb, When are the liberals going to protest all of the Muslim Bakeries who won’t bake a cake for Gay couples.

  • charleo1

    For a Party that claims to adore clear lines being drawn, for which there are real World consequences for crossing. See George H.W. Bush, in the First Gulf War, and George W. Bush, with the Second. Or conversely, they claim, Barack Obama in Syria. They sure don’t seem to appreciate this one very much at all. In fact, they seem down right blindsided by the reaction. As was most of the top tier Republicans contemplating running for their Party’s nomination for President. Who quickly came out in defense of the Indiana RFRA Law, before walking their support back. Probably chastened by the near unified negative reaction from the corporate community to the law. And much like Asa Hutchison, Gov. of Arkansas. Who was poised to sign a carbon copy of Indiana’s Law, before seeing all the fun his counterpart Gov. Mike Pence was having trying to defend his actions. After doing, what he, [Gov. Hutchinson] had previously promised was a done deal in Arkansas. Then to the surprise of many, did an abrupt about face, ostensively, if we are to believe Governor Hutchinson, primarily on the sage advise of his son. As the Governor went on to explain, in his opinion, what was a, “generational difference,” on the issue. So, the younger generations if we are to believe the Governor, are against religious freedom? Or, do they, the younger generations, along with high majorities of everyone else, see these laws, written without the necessary safeguards against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, exactly for what they are. A mean spirited, pander to the militant Christian Right, that make up as high as 30% of the current GOP political base in an important election season? But wait! There’s more! Much more, these laws attempt to do, than appeal to a radical Christian Base. But are directed at a much larger constituency within the Conservative Ranks. As it turns out, they are just another way, ‘to skin the cat,’ of rolling back the gains of the Civil Rights Act, and the core gains, and social revival, of the Civil Rights movement itself. Which many on the Right continue to strongly feel, resulted in an unConstitutional overstep of the Federal Government. Not on their religious freedoms, mind you. But on their individual Property Rights. The same principles memorialized in the basis, and bias, of the Supreme Court’s Dred-Scott decision. Which held, that since slavery was a legal institution. Therefore slaves were the property of their owners. And those owners were well within their Rights to reclaim their, “chattel,” from any area, or State in the Country, Be it deemed, “free, or slave holding,” It was the Right to control private property that was at issue. Woolworth after all, did not base it’s claims on it’s Rights to control it’s lunch counter on religious freedom. But on what it claimed were it’s Constitutional Property Rights to control it’s business practices, in such a manner as they calculated would produce the greatest profits. Or, bring in the desired clientele, or for any reason that they, as a private, for profit enterprise, need not under any theory of law, be required to divulge. And isn’t this exactly what, in effect, Indiana’s supposed, RFRA Law accommodates? After all, if the Conservative Right were truly concerned about the deterioration of religious freedoms in this Country. Why were they so adamantly against the Islamic Center around the corner from Ground Zero in Ny. Hatefully, and quite openly, characterize the proposed center as a “Victory Mosque,” for the “Islamists.” And nary a word about our need to protect religious freedom, and tolerance. In an atmosphere where such values were under assault, from an Leftist Secular Agenda. Or, the overwhelming sympathy by the Right Wing, for the T-Party’s protests against an expansion of a Mosque in Hillsborough TN. Provides even more evidence of a basic disdain within the Christian Right, for the equal application of religious freedoms. Or, juxtapose those examples against the general support of the Right, in recent Supreme Court decision to severely roll back the Civil Rights era Voting Rights Bill. And one starts to get a clearer picture of what these new, so called, “Religious Protection Laws,” are really all about.

  • Daniel Jones

    Lots of good folks living in Indiana?
    If they don’t weant to be seen as apathetic to evil or passively supporting evil, they know what to do.. or do we need to loop the Monsignor’s sermon from “Boondock Saints” for the next six months, six days, and six hours?
    SPOILER: “We must fear evil men–but there is something we must fear more; the *indifference* of *good* men!”

    • charleo1

      Well, to their credit, that’s not what we’re seeing out of the good folks in Indiana. In fact, they’ve already successfully held up the signing of another such law in Arkansas. And may, just may, cause the Indiana Law to be repealed completely. As the protections of people’s sexual orientation they are insisting on, essentially guts one of the primary intents of the hateful discriminatory law. It’s nice to see small, “d,” democracy in action. Inspiring in fact, And also fitting, that the good folks in Indiana, and the business community at large, get the credit they deserve. I for one, wasn’t sure this kind of thing was still possible in this Country. Maybe it will catch on!!!?

      • Daniel Jones

        Then it sounds like they really do know what to do.. and are doing it.
        That’s good news for all of us!
        (Incidentally, unless you put in some symbols for line breaks, this format will not respect paragraphs..)

  • Alvin Harrison

    As I have stated many times the demographic of the USAhas and is changing and the GOP and their followers just do not get it. I told them in my blog…be careful what you wish for and the wisdom in that warning has come to pass on so many levels. The WORST thing that could have happened was for them to win the Senate and House majority…it emboldened them…they somehow translated a 37% voter turnout as a mandate…with this newfound courage they defied the President many times and had to back down looking impotent even with their “majority”…and the GOP state legislatures who missed the lesson of change in the people got slapped with this move. The worst is yet to come for them…America has moved forward and they still have not figured it out…oh well…stick to your old ways and base and see what happens GOP….

  • fortunev

    Sure, open the door for the legal discrimination of anyone you do not like based on your own personal discriminatory preferences. Sounds like a winning plan to me. Knowing that this country was founded on racism and ethnic cleansing with many folks who still believe in that kind of stupidity the program should attract all kinds of good democratic business behavior. Idiots.

  • Budjob

    Quit praying,and go to the polling precincts.Democrats DO NOT enact discriminatory laws folks!!!

  • shtstr

    God and his people will always win. As a landlord I have ways to pick and choose whom I want as tenants. I have 4 other applicants already but fill out an application in case one of the others don’t work out. has worked well for 50 years. I have never been accused of discrimination.

    • James Bagley

      You aren’t one of God’s people. You are the kind of person that he would whip with a cat-o-nine-tails as soon as look at you. But all is not lost — you certainly have a guaranteed reservation at that resort famous for specializing in pitchfork massages and jaccuzzis of fire. I have no doubt that your true master grins with anticipation every time you spew your intolerant hate in public. Congratulations.

  • shtstr

    if I were a baker and forced to do a cake they would have the ugliest worst tasting cake ever.

    • James Bagley

      That’s quite all right — your intended targets could return and force you to either provide a refund or repeatedly create new cakes until you either learn your lesson or deservedly go out of business. But it’s probably a good thing that you aren’t a baker anyway, because you would have little time to bake cakes due to the fact that your knuckles dragging along the ground would force you to spend 99% of your time washing your hands to comply with local health ordinances.