Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Lions and Lambs

LIons and Lambs

“March comes in like a lion, goes out like a lamb.”

Tell that to Indiana Governor Mike Pence, whose signing of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) into law at the end of March created a roaring controversy.

Does the law enable discrimination? Or protect religious freedom? Or both? Neither?

An Associated Press report explains: “Religious freedom laws like the one causing an uproar in Indiana have never been successfully used to defend discrimination against gays — and have rarely been used at all, legal experts say.”

Of course, discrimination continues. In 2014, a Texas restaurateur refused service to a gay couple. As a FindLaw.com article explains, the 1964 Civil rights Act “only prohibits discrimination on the basis of color, race, religion, or national origin, and says nothing about sexual orientation.”

So some states, such as New Mexico and Oregon, added legal protections for sexual orientation. But that’s led to reverse violations of rights — facing a $150,000 fine, a bakery closed its shop after the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries ruled it violated a lesbian couple’s civil rights by declining to make a wedding cake; a New Mexico photographer was found guilty of violating the state’s Human Rights law for declining to photograph a gay couple’s commitment ceremony.

In times’ past, both state and private violence enforced invidious racial discrimination. Thankfully, those days are gone — cafes, hotels and stores are open to all.

But the civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in public accommodations cases are distinct from forcing photographers or florists or flutists to personally participate in a ceremony they choose not to.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.


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LIons and Lambs

 

By: CS Admin

3 Comments

  1. JFB says:

    This is the same issue abortion, if you can be compelled to photograph a wedding, you can be compelled to perfo an abortion.
    Once action can be compelled regardless of its violating a religious belief or holding the dam is broken. 
    Let’s start serving bacon sandwiches in prisons on Good Friday!

  2. Mr David P Falzone says:

    This is getting out of hand. I understand that restaurants, stores, and hospitals should not refuse counter service, because that counter service does not violate a religious objection. It is my opinion, however, that business owners should have the right to ask customers to seek another provider if the requested service violates those beliefs. Imagine a situation where a Muslim demands that a Jewish Printer make a 1000 signs that say “DEATH TO ISRAEL”? Does that business owner not hold a “Right” to request that the customer seek another printer? Same goes for Abortions, Wedding cakes, and Photographers where the “service being requested” violates the religious beliefs, customs, or cultural sensibilities.

  3. Pat says:

    I have never understood the idea that I am ENTITLED to the services of a private individual. When and where do his rights to free association have to surrender to my desire to be served?

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