In exact opposition to the title 70's musical hit "Indiana Wants Me" by R Dean Taylor, now Indiana DOES NOT want me, or many of you.
Having lived in Michigan for many years, I spent some good times with friends traveling to and fro to Indiana. Indianapolis is a vibrant city with a lot to offer as are many other cities around the state. But now for some (including myself) its a dangerous place to be. Living now in the South in New Orleans, I am seeing states on either side of Louisiana trying to enact horrifying laws that exclude people that don't meet "the norm".
I almost feel like someone should start posting a travel advisory, similar to what the government does to warn people going overseas about troubled and dangerous areas of the world. This Travel Advisory would advise LGBT folk, persons of color, Muslims, Sikhs, Hindus or anyone else that may not fit Indiana's norm.
While the current strategy many businesses and organizations are using to economically pulling out of the state is a great way to try and reverse a terrible law. I suggest that we need a Plan B in case it fails. If the law is not reversed then every person who could be damaged by it should choose the same weekend and converge en mass on the state proudly wearing a tag similar to this one.
Fill in the blank for whatever subculture you might be part of that could be harmed by this law and proudly go into as many businesses as you can. Don't cause problems. Smile, be as pleasant as you can possibly be. Let your tag speak for you. Flood the state for a few days. Yes it would help their economy but one of two things would also occur. Either most wouldn't give a damn about this law and willingly serve you proving the , stupidity of ever enacting it, or every single business that turns you away gets sued. Yes the law protects them, but consider what it would do to the Indiana legal system to have multiple thousands of lawsuits all brought to the state at the same time.
Perhaps I am naive and a lawyer would say it wouldn't work. But the distraction alone of having thousand of "those people" converging in one place would certainly be cause enough to cause a stir and make a statement.
In fact I would take it a step further and suggest creating a cell phone app that can tell you where specific businesses are turning people away and sharing stories. Create a black list of businesses that refuse service. Hell, create a white list too of friendly businesses who cared about their customers, ALL OF THEM.
And face it, if your a business are you going to start turning people away in droves if they are spending money in your establishment? Its easy to turn one poor gay man away, but dozens, perhaps not.
Make a weekend of fun out of it. Make it a challenge to vex these folks that would turn away their fellow human beings. Make them close their doors and lose money for a few days because they "fear" our presence.
As Gandhi and Martin Luther King preached, violence is not the answer. Be the sweet caring people we know you are, regardless of how badly you are treated. Slay this law with love, not hate because ultimately hate is the weapon of choice of those that created this law. Choose a different weapon!
And yes I am artist first and I try to always relate everything back to art. So artists reading this, think creatively! How can you help slay this law with your skills???? If we all play a small part, things can and will change!