GOP Rep. Says Indiana Doesn’t Need LGBT Protections: “It’s Legal To Fire Me For Being Straight”

"There have been zero verified complaints" of anti-LGBT discrimination, claims state Rep. Tim Wesco—incorrectly.

We’ve heard some pretty outrageous rationales about why LGBT people don’t need anti-discrimination laws, but Indiana Rep. Tim Wesco takes the cake.

In a town hall on Friday, Wesco said that such laws were unnecessary because gay people could just as easily fire a heterosexual.

“It is legal to fire me for being straight. Doesn’t mean it happens,” Wesco said, referencing a nondiscrimination ordinance in nearby South Bend.

“There have been zero verified complaints against discrimination in South Bend.”

So, because no one has broken the law, the law is not needed?

tim wesco
Rep. Timothy Wesco

Actually, The New Civil Rights Movement reports there were FOUR complaints about workplace discrimination in South Bend after the town enacted its law—and one was filed by a straight person.

Wesco, 30, is also a pastor at Calvary Baptist Church—and is an outspoken opponent of marriage equality and supporter of Indiana’s contentious Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

“The future of Indiana is hinging right now on how our leaders respond to attempts which are seeking to turn marriage into something it was never meant to be, nor can ever successfully be,” Wesco wrote in a 2010 blogpost.

Sadly, though not surprisingly, he wasn’t alone in attacking equality.

GOP Rep. Curt Nisly said LGBT people don’t deserve protections based on their “choices.”

“LGBT [people] are individuals. So they have individual rights,” Nisly said. “I don’t think that we should have collective rights just because you make certain choices.”

h/t: The New Civil Rights Movement

Dan Avery is a writer-editor who focuses on culture, breaking news and LGBT rights. His work has appeared in Newsweek, The New York Times, Time Out New York, The Advocate and elsewhere.