Time Warner, the parent company of Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment, has joined in the rapidly growing call for Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal to veto a “religious liberty” bill that many charge will legalize anti-gay discrimination.
“At Time Warner, diversity in all its forms is core to our value system and to the success of our business,” the company said in a statement released this morning. “We strongly oppose the discriminatory language and intent of Georgia’s pending religious liberty bill, which clearly violates the values and principles of inclusion and the ability of all people to live and work free from discrimination.”
In opposing the legislation, the media giant, whose assets also include HBO and the Atlanta-based Turner Broadcasting, joins AMC Networks, as well as Disney and Marvel Studios, which have threatened to boycott the state if the bill is signed into law.
“All of our divisions – HBO, Warner Bros. and Turner – have business interests in Georgia, but none more than Turner, an active participant in the Georgia Prospers campaign, a coalition of business leaders committed to a Georgia that welcomes all people,” Time Warner stated. “Georgia bill HB 757 is in contradiction to this campaign, to the values we hold dear, and to the type of workplace we guarantee to our employees. We urge Governor Deal to exercise his veto.”
Passed March 17 by the Georgia legislature, the “Free Exercise Protection Act” would allow faith-based organizations to deny service or employment to anyone who violates their “sincerely held religious belief.” It would also require the government to demonstrate a “compelling governmental interest” before it interferes with a person’s exercise of religion.
Local corporations and business groups opposed the legislation, which would permit opponents of same-sex marriage to cite religious beliefs in denying services to gay couples.
Deal has until May 3 to act on the legislation.