Admittedly, saying beer is the solution to all of life’s problems might imply you’re just looking for an easy fix. But when it comes to making things better, beer can have its place either. And now breweries in North Carolina are using the power of beer to speak out against their state’s controversial HB2 law which many believe unfairly discriminates against the LGBT community.
Don’t Be Mean to People: A Golden Rule Saison is a collaboration between Hillsborough’s Mystery Brewing and Durham’s Ponysaurus Brewing intended as a liquid protest against North Carolina’s recently passed HB2 law which eliminates anti-discrimination protections for LGBT people and requires persons only use bathrooms based on their biological sex. “We didn't feel like HB2 represented us as businesses or as residents of North Carolina,” Mystery’s head brewer Erik Lars Myers told NPR.
Beyond the two brands making the beer, an additional three dozen North Carolina brewers – about a quarter of the state’s 161 breweries – have signed on to donate resources and sell the beer in their taprooms. Individuals in the state can also support the cause by buying four-packs of the beer through a crowdfunding campaign.
That campaign has already hauled in over $28,000, with 100 percent of the profits going to one of two North Carolina charities: EqualityNC, which advocates against policies like HB2, and QORDS, a summer music camp for LGBT youth. “We have the ability to make a significant social impact by working together for a greater good,” said Mystery’s Keil Jansen, speaking to the strength of North Carolina’s brewing scene which the Brewers Association says accounted for $1.2 billion in economic impact in the state last year.
For beer fans who also want to fight against discrimination, Don’t Be Mean to People is a brew that will taste sweeter than most. Actually, it’s a Saison, so it probably won’t be that sweet—but come on people, it’s a metaphor.