Hey everybody. I know I’ve been on hiatus for awhile, and to those who care, I do apologize. College ain’t the party it is in the movies!
“One nation. . . with liberty and justice for all.” Some people think religious freedom means they can do whatever they want to others in the name of their religion. If religion is the reason, it ought to be sacrosanct. Segregation. Hate. Inequality.
To this, I state what should be the obvious. No.
That’s simply not what religious freedom means. That’s not what the Founders intended, and permit me to say, that’s not even what God intended. But let’s not go into a religious analysis of these “pre-emptive” measures.
The point is, it shouldn’t be an issue. It doesn’t matter what the religious analysis is, because in addition to religious freedom, America was founded on a separation between Church and State. You can’t privilege one religion over another. You can’t use religious reasoning in the law. Period.
These bills don’t explicitly grant one religion privilege, but they do grant those with close-minded religious beliefs privilege to deprive LGBT couples (and single individuals, if you read into the loopholes) of their fundamental American right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” And if you take context into consideration, and realize that the conservatives who proposed and passed these bills are part of the fear-based, paranoid, Christian movement sweeping the red nation, you’ll read the subtext privilege granted to frightened and paranoid Christians.
Additionally, they don’t technically use religious reasoning, or directly impose the will of one religion onto anybody. They simply allow individuals the right to impose the will of their religion upon LGBT citizens. That is an indirect route to the same end.
These bills don’t grant the right of religious freedom to all; they grant to homophobes the right of freedom from fear and discomfort. At the expense of LGBT citizens.
If only the laws allowed us to refuse service to ANYBODY because of religion, instead of just gays! Wouldn’t Idaho and Kansas be such nice, cozy places to live? Imagine every day full of the satisfying knowledge that your government permits the religiously vehement rejection of anything personally distasteful to you. I think I would start by refusing to tip my right-wing conservative waiter, regardless of his service! Condoning his hateful behavior and lifestyle conflicts deeply with my religion.