Recently, major Nashville companies, such as Curb Records and AllianceBernstein, however, have taken very public stances against the “Slate of Hate.” Now, Nashville Business Journal (NBJ) is reporting that Warner Music Group executives have sent a letter to Governor Bill Lee and state congressional leaders opposing the legislation. Warner, however, opposed the legislation privately, in a letter sent Tuesday, and is now releasing excerpts of the letter via NBJ.
According to NBJ, the letter was penned by Warner’s Nashville leaders John Esposito, Ben Vaughn, and Kris Ahrend. They urge Governor Lee to oppose or block the legislation, and sent the letter not only to Lee but also several members of the General Assembly, including notorious anti-LGBT activist-legislator Glen Casada, who now serves as Speaker of the House.
According to the select quotes provided to the NBJ, the letter says, “[Warner Music Group] is proud of its longstanding presence in Tennessee… The continued success and growth of our business here depends on our ability to recruit and retain a best-in-class, diverse workforce… We often receive questions about whether Tennessee is a welcoming and inclusive place to live for the LGBT community. These bills send a clear message that LGBT artists, songwriters and employees are not welcome. Please continue to make Tennessee a welcoming and inclusive state for all people by rejecting these bills.”
Such bills as those in the “Slate of Hate” have cost states billions of dollars in lost revenues as they face boycotts by businesses and other governments. Warner has worked with local advocacy groups such as the Nashville LGBT Chamber to craft their strategy, and their decision to tackle the issue in a more behind-the-scenes approach.