Bicycles Are Equalizers and Indiana Should be Too

Nine13sports opposes HJR-3, believes it will harm future philanthropic giving in Central Indiana

Nine13sports is announcing our opposition to HJR-3, the proposed constitutional amendment that would duplicate Indiana’s definition of marriage and could permanently prohibit civil unions, domestic partnerships and other legal protections for same-sex and unmarried couples.

Nine13sports takes organizational pride in creating and providing fitness programs that utilize the bicycle as an equalizer amongst our participants.  We’re a non-profit organization that typically does not delve into the legislative process or social issues; but we believe HJR-3, the proposed constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage, would be so harmful to the city of Indianapolis we love so much that it would be irresponsible not to speak out against it.

As a non-profit, we created our program and mission to help Indianapolis grow.  That growth can be through improving fitness, building relationships amongst peers and shaping the definition of community partnership.  Part of our mission is to foster and create a culture of “mutual respect for one another,” something that HJR-3 would directly challenge.

Nine13sports is one of the first non-profits not directly affiliated with the arts community to formally speak out against HJR-3.  We ask other non-profits that work in Indianapolis to ask themselves, “How would the passage of HJR-3 impact our organization? Our community?  Our participants?”

HJR-3 would damage the very root of survival for non-profit organizations here in Indianapolis.  If HJR-3 were to pass, it would undoubtedly change the dynamics of businesses both already here and new companies venturing into the Indianapolis market.  Many of Indiana’s largest employers have already united in opposition , and if approved by voters, this amendment will directly impact the community of philanthropic giving and charitable contributions by changing the landscape of some of the most lucrative employment positions.

Quite simply, we believe approval of HJR-3 will create an exodus of existing individuals and couples who believe in charitable giving and will additionally turn the next generation of successful employees away from Indiana. This will limit not only current, but future charitable dollars for the non-profit community as a whole.

We are a small non-profit, and we realize there are those who will not agree with us on this issue. After all, there are passionate arguments on both sides of this debate. But we are proud to follow the lead of Mayor Ballard, the City-County Council, the Indy Chamber, some of Indiana’s largest employers and academic institutions, faith leaders and thousands of Hoosiers who oppose this amendment.

We hope those who support our programs will understand that our stance is based on a deep love of this community and all who call Indianapolis home — and a desire to see our city, its economy and its potential grow.

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