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Pride Picnic Casper

Rob Johnston helps to serve lunch during the Pride in the Park picnic in June 2014 at Mike Sedar Park in Casper. He hopes city leaders will pass an anti-discrimination resolution.

There’s a lot about Wyoming to love, and plenty of reasons to make it home. From the rich landscape and its plethora of recreational offerings, to the small-town community feel in even its biggest cities, Wyoming has a little of something for everyone.

In Casper, we only need to drive 15 minutes in any direction to reach whatever we might need. Our growing downtown offers an array of experiences. There are diverse eateries and watering holes; art galleries showcasing an abundance of local talent; venues where you can hear any genre of local music, family-friendly events happening all the time. The heart of Casper is teeming with cultural diversity and opportunity.

And that’s why a resolution against discrimination is so important to this community. Casperites have worked to bring their city into the 21st century. A younger generation that traditionally leaves the state in high numbers is working to turn Casper into a place they want to call home. They want their friends and family to feel safe and included in the future they’re building.

The anti-discrimination resolution that a group of LGBT allies has proposed asks only for what anyone wants for themselves and the people they love. They want to know that no doors will be closed on them simply for their sexual orientation or gender identity.

More than 100 local businesses have signed a letter in support of the resolution. Local businesses are the backbone of our economy and they want to be a part of a community that welcomes all walks of life. It’s an ethical obligation. But it’s also an economic one. Inclusivity is good for business.

By cementing Casper’s reputation as a place that accepts people of all backgrounds, more people will want to stay. And better still, more people will want to come.

The resolution will do more than protect residents of this growing city from outdated ideologies. It will protect Casper from being left behind. It well help secure Casper’s place in a bright future.

The City Council should pass the anti-discrimination resolution and tell our LGBT neighbors that we’re all on their side. They should take this step toward ensuring Casper’s place in a diverse and multicultural world.

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Opinion Editor

Dallas Bower joined the Star-Tribune copy desk in June 2017. She studied English at the University of Wyoming. Her favorite book is The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway, or Harry Potter, depending on the day.

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