Wednesday, April 1, 2015

"You Can Discriminate As Long As You Don't Discriminate"

Updates on Indiana's "You Can Discriminate As Long As You Don't Discriminate" law:
Consider the first reported application of the law: A store owner refused to serve Michelle Bachman's husband because he looked gay to her.
-- Holtz began to suspect that Bachmann was “perhaps a homosexual man”, and because it is now within her rights to refuse service based on religious beliefs, informed Bachmann she would be unable to serve him, and asked him to leave. --
So that's only one woman's interpretation?  Read on.
In spite of denials that the law intended to legalize discrimination, the groups who helped write the law and who stood beside the Governor when he signed it, openly declare that discrimination is the ONLY purpose of the law.
(The following lengthy quote is from
-- At the forefront of the conservative reaction is Micah Clark, who serves as executive director of the American Family Association of Indiana and who stood right behind Pence as he signed the bill. Speaking Monday to Tim Wildmon, head of the national American Family Association, Clark explained that conservatives should oppose any effort to clarify that the law does not legalize discrimination. “That could totally destroy this bill,” he explained.
Clark has been publicly advocating for the bill as a means for allowing anti-LGBT discrimination since December, long before the legislation was even drafted. This directly contradicts the claims made Monday by House Speaker Brian Bosma (R) and Senate President Pro Tem David Long (R) that the legislation never had anything to do with discrimination.
Eric Miller, Executive Director of Advance America, is another anti-LGBT activist who stood by Pence as he signed the bill. Advance America praised Pence for signing the bill last week, openly stating that it would allow wedding vendors to refuse to serve same-sex couples and allow Christian businesses to refuse transgender people access to restrooms. Miller was quoted as saying, “It is vitally important to protect religious freedom in Indiana. It’s the right thing to do. It was therefore important to pass Senate Bill 101 in 2015 in order to help protect churches, Christian businesses and individuals from those who want to punish them because of their Biblical beliefs!” Pence and Miller, it turns out, go way back.
On the national stage, conservatives are similarly defending the RFRA and arguing it needs no fixing. Andrew Walker, Director of Policy Studies for the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, perhaps best summed up the distortion conservatives are using to argue that it’s not discriminatory:
A wedding vendor who chooses not to service a same-sex wedding is not discriminating against a person’s being. Instead, the vendor believes that material cooperation in a particular event encroaches on his conscience… To give relief to a particular wedding vendor who feels uncomfortable servicing a gay wedding isn’t in any way comparable to state-sponsored discrimination… To require a wedding vendor to service a same-sex wedding is not eliminating discrimination against the gay couple. It’s coercing the wedding vendor. --
This sayeth the writers and supporters of the bill.  Governor Pence, someone's telling lies

On 3/31, Governor Pence stated he would work with the legislature to modify the law to,"make it clear that" the law did not allow a business to refuse service.  However, Tony 

Cook of the Indianapolis Star reports that legislators are having mixed responses to this, a few feeling that outright repeal is preferable.


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  2. JimApril 1, 2015 at 4:37 PM
    OK, OK...I confess. The report about Mr. Bachman originated on the National Report website. The National Report is a satirical site similar to The Onion...but admit it, it sounded possible. Oh, and the rest of the post is real.