koi and swan, sepia

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Notes from flyover country

Indiana wants me, but I can't go back there.

Indiana's Republican Governor Mike Pence has signed the so called "religious freedom" bill that will allow people to discriminate based on their religious views. Pence signed the state's Religious Freedom Restoration Act in a private ceremony Thursday. He says that the bill, SB101, will in no way lead to discrimination.
SB-101 Religious freedom restoration. Prohibits a governmental entity from substantially burdening a person's exercise of religion, even if the burden results from a rule of general applicability, unless the governmental entity can demonstrate that the burden: (1) is in furtherance of a compelling governmental interest; and (2) is the least restrictive means of furthering the compelling governmental interest. Provides a procedure for remedying a violation. Specifies that the religious freedom law applies to the implementation or application of a law regardless of whether the state or any other governmental entity or official is a party to a proceeding implementing or applying the law. Prohibits an applicant, employee, or former employee from pursuing certain causes of action against a private employer. 
I started looking into the issue and went to one of the principal supporter's website Advance America.

SB 101 will help protect religious freedom in Indiana by providing protection for individuals with sincerely held religious beliefs, along with Christian businesses and churches.
SB 101 will help protect individuals, Christian businesses and churches from those supporting homosexual marriages and those supporting government recognition and approval of gender identity (male cross-dressers).
Hmmm, really worried about the cross dressers, are we? Christian bakers, florists and photographers should not be punished for refusing to participate in a homosexual marriage. Just exactly how many men have tried to use the women's restroom anyway?

Sounds like discrimination to me, but what do I know? It is obvious the hoosiers are under attack by the forces of the ungodly. Even if the Governor claims it will not further discrimination, evidently its supporters see things differently.

Indiana U. bully throwing chair
Lets take it to its furthest conceivable conclusion; my bible tells me that black people are accursed in the bible. The old curse of Ham. To wit:
24 And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him.25 And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.26 And he said, Blessed be the Lord God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.27 God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant. –Genesis 9:20-27
Good enough, I'm not serving blacks in my establishment, my restaurant or my hotel. And if it is a mixed race couple, miscegenation, sorry, same answer. Yids, don't even ask. In fact such laws were prevalent in the United States until they were finally overturned in 1967 in Loving vs. Virginia. From Wiki:
In the United States, anti-miscegenation laws (also known as miscegenation laws) were state laws passed by individual states to prohibit miscegenation, nowadays more commonly referred to as interracial marriage and interracial sex. Typically defining miscegenation as a felony, these laws prohibited the solemnization of weddings between persons of different races and prohibited the officiating of such ceremonies. Sometimes, the individuals attempting to marry would not be held guilty of miscegenation itself, but felony charges of adultery or fornication would be brought against them instead. All anti-miscegenation laws banned the marriage of whites and non-white groups, primarily blacks, but often also Native Americans and Asians.
In many states, anti-miscegenation laws also criminalized cohabitation and sex between whites and non-whites. In addition, the state of Oklahoma in 1908 banned marriage "between a person of African descent" and "any person not of African descent"; Louisiana in 1920 banned marriage between Native Americans and African Americans (and from 1920–1942, concubinage as well); and Maryland in 1935 banned marriages between blacks and Filipinos or Malays.While anti-miscegenation laws are often regarded as a Southern phenomenon, most western and plains states also had anti-miscegenation laws.
Although anti-miscegenation amendments were proposed in United States Congress in 1871, 1912–1913 and 1928, a nationwide law against racially mixed marriages was never enacted. Prior to Perez v. Sharp (1948), most U.S. states had and variously enforced anti-miscegenation laws. In 1967, the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled in Loving v. Virginia that anti-miscegenation laws are unconstitutional. With this ruling, these laws were no longer in effect in the remaining 16 states that at the time still enforced them. However, the active repeal of the laws was not complete until Alabama did so in 2000 after failing to do so in several earlier plebiscites on the matter. At the time, nearly 526,000 people voted against the repeal. 
It doesn't have to be gays or blacks, it could be jews, catholics, buddhists, muslims, atheists, take your pick. You run afoul of the deity of my choice and you are in big trouble buster. Or at least the government approved brand we tend to favor in these parts.

A slippery slope to be sure and a possible return to a state of mind that many of us thought we had left ages ago. People don't like somebody for one account or another and suddenly they have scripture to back up their right to discriminate against them. Starts out with a single case of discrimination, in the end you get redlining and be out of town by sundown. Has happened before. America at its nastiest.

Pence casts the bill as one restraining big government and as typical blames the media for causing the hubbub.
"I'm not aware of cases and controversies. I mean as I travel around the state one thing I know for sure —Hoosier hospitality is the greatest in the nation. Hoosiers are loving, caring, generous to a fault," Pence said in an interview with conservative radio host Greg Garrison on Thursday. "People that have strong hearts, strong values. But this isn't about any present controversy as much as some in the media want to make it about. It's about making sure that Hoosiers have the same protections in our state courts as they have in federal courts and as 30 other states have."
Pence, in that same interview, said the law was modeled after legislation passed by Congress in 1993 and that the idea was simply to make sure Indianans had the same protections as elsewhere in the country.
Earlier in the day Pence signed into law legislation barring the state from requiring businesses to serve gay and lesbian people if those businesses had religious objections.
"This is about restraining government action, Greg," Pence said.
Conventions and some large companies have already signaled their intention to vacate the state's cheery shores at the earliest possible opportunity.

Indiana Welcome Wagon.


Sanoguy said...

I would say unbelievable, however it has become very believable. I wonder how long it will take to get to the Supreme Court and if this current court, which has become very conservative (extreme right wing) will over turn it? Seems like a no brainier to me!

Ken Seals said...

This is an atrocious attack on personal freedom. The Thomas Jefferson quote you posted is one of the wisest things I have ever read!

Anonymous said...

On the other hand, those KKK outfits seem a bit "gay" doncha know?

Anonymous said...

Interesting article on the gay issue. Touchy problem . There was a woman in Albuquerque that would not bake a cake for a gay wedding. Instead of just going to another baker who would have been happy to bake them a cake, the sued her and bankrupted her just because she did not believe in gay marriage. So you force it down the throats of people who believe a man and a woman make a marriage as it has been from time one.
I noticed that you had a photo of clan members in full dress, these guys are evil to the bone in my view, and if they come to me and want me to do a Barbeque for them, it would turn my stomach and disgust me to no end to be forced to associate with them, or would you want to be forced to to take clan wedding photos, a crips gang party, or any other group you don't want to associate with, where's your freedom of choice ?
We certainly do not want to go back to segregation in any manner, but you can't go around and make laws that force you to like everyone or you will be sued into submission. That's just as bad
Just something to think about.

Blue Heron said...

Mike, when we pass laws like this we need to put our swami hats on and see what non intended consequences they might cause in the future.

While one can usually find another baker to bake a wedding cake, what if your religious beliefs extend to not wanting to rent to a black person or serve one in your restaurant? Or a gay person for that matter. And if that happens in one instance , well one person can usually find another restaurant or apartment. But what if a whole community feels that way?

Then you have redlining and segregation and it has happened plenty of times before and unfortunately not that long ago.

This is a horrible slippery slope and while the supporters may not have racist or prejudiced motives it opens up a pandoras box of problems in the future.

Anonymous said...

Indiana - Its a great place to be a bigot!