by Max Brantley
Appearing yesterday on CNN, Senator Tom Cotton (R) urged critics of Indiana’s “religious freedom” law to get “perspective,” suggesting the treatment of LGBT people in Indiana compared favorably to countries where gay people are executed.
“I think it’s important we have a sense of perspective,” Cotton said. “In Iran they hang you for the crime of being gay.”
The statement by our US Senator Tom Cotton illustrates the hatred and intolerance Arkansas law must protect against. His statement that protecting Arkansans from discrimination is not a credible priority for our state and that people who are gay should feel lucky they are not hanged is dangerous and offensive. Senator Cotton’s extremism is in sharp contrast to the bipartisan effort in the Arkansas legislature to arrive at a compromise that will work for Arkansas. We are ALL Arkansans and we need to keep DC polarized politics out of Arkansas where bipartisan cooperation on important issues is still possible.UPDATE II: The Stonewall Democrats comment:
The Stonewall Democratic Caucus of Arkansas is appalled by the most recent statement by Senator Tom Cotton. His callous disregard for both LGBT citizens and their families is reckless and unconscionable. Scores of LGBT people have been beaten, tortured, and killed simply for being LGBT. Further, to equate being gay with a crime is divisive and polarizing. We call on him to meet with members of the community and their families. We call on him to retract his comments. We have left a request for a meeting at his Little Rock office.