Last fall, Amazon spurred a 21st Century gold rush by inviting every U.S. city and state to bid for their second corporate headquarters. Who could resist the economic genie promising thousands of jobs and potential billions in revenues?
While the suspense mounts, however, some LGBT activists declared "No Gay? No Way" to pressure Amazon to avoid all states that cannot offer statewide LGBT civil rights protections. The activists' case emerged first on a website, unsourced and unsigned. When asked about the campaign by a journalist, one of the unnamed activists remarked the "campaign is not meant to harm the gay people who live in the nine cities" [in unprotected states] that are bidding for Amazon's foothold.
As LGBT leaders in Georgia and Virginia, we take that in good faith. However, we also fear that urging employers, like Amazon, to boycott and sidestep states and regions wholesale, is flawed at best and risky and harmful at worst.
This begs the question whether this ad hoc approach paused long enough to listen to LGBT community leaders, activists and business owners in the affected states, including Virginia, Georgia, Florida, Tennessee, Indiana, Ohio, North Carolina, Texas, and Pennsylvania. Read more via CNBC