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NY Insurance Provider Battles Progressive over Unprogressive Sign

Progressive Insurance has asked an insurance provider in Elmira, New York to remove their company logo from the outside of its agency after the provider posted a different sign in its window warning people of the dangers of gay marriage.

ProgressiveAuto Home and Family Insurance Center's marquee-style sign reads: "Save the kids. Say no to gay marriage in NY".

Progressive told Elmira's Star-Gazette: "It takes a little bit of time. But we've gotten a lot of phone calls here. We need to separate ourselves."

Auto Home and Family owner Rick Piper says he has no plans to remove the sign: "They said 'Look, we don't want that message associated with Progressive, so either take your sign out of the window, or we have to take our sign down. They just don't want to be associated apparently with the sign that I have there."

According to the Star-Gazette: "Piper has said he put the sign up because he wanted to make people aware of the state Assembly's approval of same-sex marriage several months ago. He called it a sin and referred to Bible passages opposing homosexuality. However, some community members have voiced opposition to the sign and called it discriminatory. Meanwhile, Southport was doing research Tuesday afternoon about whether the town has an ordinance that would prohibit Piper's sign, Town Supervisor David Sheen said. He said he hoped to have an answer by Tuesday night's Southport Town Board meeting, he said. The issue was not discussed at the meeting, but afterward, town attorney Steven Barnstead told the Star-Gazette that the town can take no action because the sign involves free speech."

Contact information for Piper can be found here.

Anti-gay marriage sign troubles Progressive [star-gazette]
(image star-gazette)

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Comments

  1. ...Piper's small business represents, along with Progressive, AIG and Hartford. Progressive's current plan is to simply remove their brand from the building, *not* his ability to represent the Ohio-based company.

    When arguing his point, Piper refers to "anal sex" being a sin, sodomy. As I recall, the last time I filed a claim with my agent, anal sex really wasn't a topic we chatted about!

    Progressive's Media Relations contact handling the Elmira sign is: Cristy Coté at 440.395.0135

    Posted by: jason | Nov 14, 2007 10:53:20 AM


  2. Also send an email to progressive letting them know that we don't stand for this type of discrimination!

    https://www.progressive.com/contact-us.aspx

    Posted by: A | Nov 14, 2007 10:54:43 AM


  3. "he put the sign up because he wanted to make people aware of the state Assembly's approval of same-sex marriage several months ago."

    I'm in Oklahoma and I knew that the bill has passed the NY Assembly. To me, the lack of a huge broohaha is more indicative of acceptance rather than a lack of knowledge of what their state government is doing.

    Good for Progressive for taking the lead, now the rest of the companies that do business with through the bigot need to step up to the plate.

    Posted by: Aggiecowboy | Nov 14, 2007 10:56:22 AM


  4. "he put the sign up because he wanted to make people aware of the state Assembly's approval of same-sex marriage several months ago."

    I'm in Oklahoma and I knew that the bill has passed the NY Assembly. To me, the lack of a huge broohaha is more indicative of acceptance rather than a lack of knowledge of what their state government is doing.

    Good for Progressive for taking the lead, now the rest of the companies that do business with through the bigot need to step up to the plate.

    Posted by: Aggiecowboy | Nov 14, 2007 10:58:39 AM


  5. I'd rather pay $50-$100 more a yr in Ins. rather then buy Ins. from this asshole..Progressive can pound sand!

    Posted by: Disgusted American | Nov 14, 2007 10:59:43 AM


  6. Progressive should completely disassociate itself with this wingnut...not simply ask him to take their sign down on the outside of the building .

    Posted by: peterparker | Nov 14, 2007 11:01:40 AM


  7. Well, that's just bad business. He's going to lose his Progressive sign... which is his company's best marketing asset. Homophobes are dumb.

    Posted by: crispy | Nov 14, 2007 11:16:00 AM


  8. The phone number is disconnected. Good. Hopefully he's out of business. Damn bigot.

    Posted by: Tyler | Nov 14, 2007 11:23:56 AM


  9. Oh damn... the number on the link provided was incorrect. He can still be harassed at the number in the photo of his crumbling, nasty, little office: 607-733-9677. Call early, call often... and be profane!

    Posted by: Tyler | Nov 14, 2007 11:28:12 AM


  10. Another company Piper represents, Security Mutual out Ithaca New York, seems to think Piper's way of doing business is not that big a deal. He refuses to deal with the situation.

    Contact information for Mr. Tom Randall is above.

    Posted by: jason | Nov 14, 2007 11:32:33 AM


  11. i just sent an email to this crazy prick.

    Isn't it going against God's will by having insurance, let alone selling it? I thought it was th contention of these wacky zealots that if God wants a tornado or a Mack truck to hit you, it's going to hit you - - plain and simple. So, in short, he's selling insurance to cover God's wrath. Is that rider on existing plans?

    What a hypocritical sack of crap.

    Posted by: John | Nov 14, 2007 11:32:33 AM


  12. Since Andy listed this gentleman's contact info, I would just encourage all of my fellow gays (and allies) NOT to send him hate mail or anything vitriolic. That will only deepen his disdain for homosexuality and nothing for our cause of trying to educate others on homosexuality and how it's not sinful, it's not a choice, etc... He is just one of those people who are victims of the church's judgmental indoctrination and misinterpretation of the Bible. We should show him what the Bible is all about and love him even though he hates us.

    Posted by: Jeremy | Nov 14, 2007 11:44:24 AM


  13. Jeremy,

    I applaud you for being able to take the high road. I however, refuse. I could care less if his "disdain for homosexuality deepens" and I am kinda tired of the idea that the only way to help our cause is to politely turn the cheek when these assholes will just slap it back into place given the chance.

    Fuck him and his mythical fantasy religious beliefs. He deserves the hell he wishes we were in.

    But again, I get your point.

    Posted by: Marco | Nov 14, 2007 12:19:04 PM


  14. Ah, the Southern Tier! I remember it well... Not much has changed. Domestic abuse and alcoholism are the two most popular pastimes.

    Posted by: anon (gmail.com) | Nov 14, 2007 12:54:26 PM


  15. Wait people still believe in the bible? God humans are stupid!

    Posted by: JLS | Nov 14, 2007 1:19:17 PM


  16. noitce they just want to take down a sign -- they'll keep selling though this asshat's agency.

    Posted by: vanitysmurf | Nov 14, 2007 1:28:10 PM


  17. Who else got the exact same response from Progressive?

    Thank you for contacting Progressive.

    Thank you for contacting us about the sign at the Auto Home & Family Insurance Center. We understand why you are offended by it and we want you to know that the beliefs expressed on the sign are those of the agency and not Progressive. Independent agents represent many insurance companies but are not employees of any company, including Progressive. While we cannot prevent an independent business owner from expressing his views, we are taking steps to ensure that his views are not associated with Progressive. Thank you again for reaching out to us.

    Sincerely,

    John T.
    Progressive Internet Representative

    Realistically, I don't see Progressive dropping this agency because of this...UNLESS they get enough negative press from it. I know this may seem like a small battle (where the hell is Elmira, New York anyway?) but this is a human rights battle that deserves being fought. If you haven't yet, contact Progressive and let them know you don't support a company that refuses to disassociate itself with discrimination.

    Posted by: A | Nov 14, 2007 3:23:57 PM


  18. is one born a stupid bigot, or is this a learned trait? ah, the nature v. nurture debate goes on.

    JOHN, you make a good argument.

    JEREMY, fuck forbearance. this kind of stupidity deserves no quarter.

    and, people, can we stop using the ignorant phrase, "i could care less"? it is, "i could NOT care less." (sigh) i feel as if i am fighting a losing battle.

    Posted by: nic | Nov 14, 2007 3:30:14 PM


  19. Hello Aggiecowboy, did you actually READ the story? Progressive wants the idiot to take down his sign our take down ours!!!

    I am soooooo very proud of my employer!

    I work for Progressive and one of our CORE Values is that ALL employees respect each other and our beliefs and lives. My partner and I have enjoyed DP benefits going on seven years through PGR and you'd be suprised how whom you choose to love does not affect your job performance. Someone needs to know that Progressive Insurance is EXACTLY that: PROGRESSIVE!!! I am very proud to work for a company that accepts its' employees based on their ability to work hard, earn promotions and allow the company to grow and prosper; with our help! I LOVE MY EMPLOYER!
    _________________
    greatdane813

    Posted by: greatdane813 | Nov 18, 2007 11:01:23 PM


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