Mississippi is already one of the most miserable states in the country, ranking third behind Kentucky and West Virginia, followed by Alabama. In fact, out of the top ten on the list, every single state is in the Bible Belt.
Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia are in the same bind as Louisiana: economies that were almost solely dependent on fossil fuel – and this was a study that was published 2 years ago when gas prices were still keeping Louisiana’s economy afloat.
Mississippi has one of the lowest per capita incomes across the United States, and has remained that way for years. You would think that lawmakers and residents would want to change this statistic, but apparently allowing businesses to discriminate is more important to them.
Wall Street is doing great, but very little of that will go to Mississippi if corporations and tourists decide to take their business somewhere else – which is what will happen according to some business owners.
“You’re going to go somewhere and stop and ask somebody for directions and the people here aren’t going to tell you how to get there. They are going to take you there,” said Wes Benton.
That’s one of the selling points Wes Benton of Red Planet Entertainment uses to bring business to his home state and squash stereotypes.
But he says 70 million dollars that would have been spent in the Magnolia state disappeared because of the Religious Accommodations Act.
And he thinks the state will not only lose more projects, but some investors will cross Mississippi off their list of possibilities altogether. (Source)
Corporate interests convinced Georgia’s governor not to sign that state’s version of this “religious freedom” law, but Mississippi apparently is just fine with continuing to be the laughingstock of the country. Singer Bryan Adams has already canceled his planned concert in Biloxi because of the law, and other entertainers will also likely do the same in protest.
The citizens of Natchez (which depends on tourism) have voiced their opposition to the law, and some have stated they would rather be a resident of Louisiana which is just on the other side of the river – that’s how bad this law is.
“Thank God for Mississippi” is a saying popular in the South. It means that no matter how screwed up their own state is, at least they’re better off than Mississippi in terms of health, wealth and education. Once again, Mississippi has placed religious bigotry over the common good of both citizens and businesses in the state, which should come as a surprise to absolutely nobody.