Sunday, February 23, 2014

AZ Religious Conscience Bill Derided as Discrimination

What is happening in this article (linked below)  is an easy one for the thinking individual to figure out, but not for the well-trained sheep.

Everything in life requires a degree of discrimination. I could approach a hundred nice ladies and ask them out and strike out each time. If I, however, was seen first by them while engaged in work, talking with friends, a recreational activity, etc., rest assured that maybe three of those hundred will at some point choose to initiate a conversation  with me.

We discriminate in whom we choose to date and marry (very important for choosing will be the Mom/Dad of your children, what company or school  to which we will apply, and the applicant whom is chosen to be hired or allowed to enroll.  This continues with out choices of friends, books and movies,  and house of worship (or lack thereof).

There is almost nothing in life that does not involve discrimination of some sort. What needs to be differentiated is what are illegal forms of discrimination and what does not incur criminal or civil penalties.

Refusing to sell a cake or other product to a man who is a known drinker of alcohol is a wrongful  form of discrimination, even if the vendor is a tea-totaling Baptist. A cake that is specifically ordered to have a message that celebrates Oktoberfest? - In that case, the vendor has the right to follow his or her conscience and inform the customer that that order cannot be filled by that establishment.

That is what this Arizona bill is about - Conscience, that and nothing else.

It is not about refusing to serve someone because of race, sexual orientation, or anything else. It also has nothing to do with old and twisted interpretations of scripture (still held by some) that hold that people of different races should not marry. No honest interpretation of the Bible can twist the words of scripture to mean that marriages between person of the same gender  are anything other than wrong.

People have a basic right to earn their living while avoiding acts that will require them to participate in an event that runs contrary to their faith. Anti-gunners will not sell services to shooting events, pro-life sign makers will not sell signs to Planned Parenthood, t-shirt vendors will not make shirts with printing that celebrates a duck hunt.  At the bottom of this page are links to several older posts in which the implications of the prohibition of the mere exercise of conscience are treated in greater detail.

In the HuffPost article, we are asked to believe that this issue is about something other than it actually is. There is a war on the truth, and there also is a campaign to end the ability of people - not to think for themselves, but to think in the first place;

"The Republican-controlled Arizona state Senate voted along party lines Wednesday to pass Senate Bill 1062, a measure that would allow businesses to reject service to any customer based on the owners’ religious beliefs.

The bill reads:
"Exercise of religion" means the PRACTICE OR OBSERVANCE OF RELIGION, INCLUDING THE ability to act or refusal to act in a manner substantially motivated by a religious belief whether or not the exercise is compulsory or central to a larger system of religious belief.

Arizona Democrats, who argue the legislation is a way to legalize discrimination against LGBT individuals, sponsored eight amendments in an attempt to thwart the legislation -- all of which were rejected by Senate Republicans.

"SB 1062 permits discrimination under the guise of religious freedom," state Senate Democratic Leader Anna Tovar said in a statement Wednesday. "With the express consent of Republicans in this Legislature, many Arizonans will find themselves members of a separate and unequal class under this law because of their sexual orientation. This bill may also open the door to discriminate based on race, familial status, religion, sex, national origin, age or disability."

As testament to the bill’s mission, state Sen. Steve Yarbrough (R), one of three lawmakers sponsoring the bill, cited a 2013 New Mexico Supreme Court ruling that banned wedding photographers from refusing to shoot same-sex ceremonies, according to the Associated Press.

"This bill is not about allowing discrimination," Yarbrough said during a nearly two-hour debate on Wednesday. "This bill is about preventing discrimination against people who are clearly living out their faith.".......

Arizona’s SB 1062 now heads to the Republican-majority state House, where it is expected to pass."

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