Tennessee lawmakers approve bill allowing counselors to deny services to LGBT patients

Gov. Bill Haslam

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery III has warned lawmakers in his state that they risk losing billions of dollars in federal funding if they move ahead with legislation restricting transgender students ‘ access to appropriate bathroom facilities. Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam has already warned that the state could lose about $3 billion in federal dollars over the proposed legislation.

But while everybody’s attention was focused on the possibility of an anti-trans bathroom bill, lawmakers went ahead and passed legislation allowing counselors and therapists to deny services to LGBT people based on the mental health professionals’ “sincerely-held principals,” according to the Times Free Press.

State Sen. Jack Johnson, who sponsored this piece of shit bill, said it would be the same as allowing a lawyer to refuse to write a will for a client charged with first-degree murder.

The American Counseling Association as well as a large number of individual counselors and therapists have come out strongly against Jackson’s bill, saying that allowing their own personal beliefs to interfere with helping a patient in need goes against everything they are trained to do.

And by the way, Tennessee lawmakers also recently approved a bill designating the Holy Bible as the official book of their state. That legislation is also awaiting action by Gov. Haslam.

—  Tammye Nash

Driver’s seat

Chaz Marie brings country rock to Razzle Dazzle, but it’s a Jeep that brings her there

Razzle Dazzle Days will pump up the jams big time over the weekend with lots of music: “Ice Cream Truck” rapper Cazwell headlines Saturday’s street festival, but he’s got a strong line of supporting acts. Among them, local singer Chaz Marie, who brings some Texas flavor to the bill with her country rock.

The Irving-based singer may not have to travel far to this gig, but she still needs the roominess of her car. With enough space for her gear and guitars, Marie talks up the easy ride of her set of wheels.

— Rich Lopez

……………………….

Name: Chaz Marie

Occupation: Singer/entertainer

How might we know you? I sing all over the DFW area!

What kind of car do you have? 2002 Jeep Cherokee Laredo Sport.

Have you named her? Yes — her name is Meerie.

Why this car? Simple: I love Jeeps!

Good gas mileage? Meh… depends. It’s 20 city, 22 highway.

What are the rules of your car? You mess it, you clean it. And no complaining about the loud music.

Speed Racer or grandma? Speed. Racer. Definitely.

Best car memory: It’s a pretty simple one, but I just loved that feeling when I first got it and drove it off the lot, all shiny and new.

Funniest road trip story? One time, I drove off with my gig book on top! Fortunately, it enjoyed the ride. It stayed on because it got caught in the luggage rack.

What’s in your player right now? Lately I’ve been playing a lot of Deftones, Jack Johnson, Beth Hart, Janis Joplin and Maroon 5.

How do you rate this to previous cars you’ve owned? Seriously, this is the best car I have ever had. It’s classy and it’s fun, but it’s still sporty.

Sexiest thing about your car? Well, me driving it, of course.

Where is one place you would like to drive your car? I would love to take it through the mountains in Colorado to Manitou Springs.

How many gallons does it take to fill? 15.

Gas is a burden on the wallet now. How many gigs do you need to afford one fill-up? Thankfully, just one gig. At least for now.

Ever write a song in your car? Not yet.

So if we see the Jeep at Razzle Dazzle, can we shoe polish it like in high school? Absolutely!

Is this your touring bus? Oh, yes.

How big is your band and how many cars are needed for a gig? We are a five- to six-piece band, but we all usually drive our own cars.

Razzle Dazzle is super gay. How are your LGBT audiences different than your straight or mixed ones? Oh my gosh, gay crowds are so uninhibited. They know how to have a party and enjoy one!  Non-gay crowds do too, but, you know, they just need a little push to get the party started sometimes.

Where can we check your music out? Thanks for asking! You can find me on iTunes, YouTube and at ChazMarie.com.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition June 3, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens