Commentary

Hate and discrimination masquerading as “religious freedom”

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, Image: www.thinkprogress.org

Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, Image: www.thinkprogress.org

The Charlotte Observer was actually quite moderate and restrained in its editorial over the weekend criticizing the latest dying gasp of the nation’s pro-discrimination movement. The editorial — “Indiana shows what not do” — highlighted the so-called “religious freedom” law enacted in Indiana. The law — which was designed by conservatives opposed to LGBT equality — has already set off a firestorm amongst more-forward looking corporate types who are rethinking their involvement with the Hoosier state. Here’s the Observer:

“Given the permissive definition of “religion” in the bills, though, the allowed discrimination would hardly stop with the LGBT community. Even if such cases are only episodic, even one is too many and the state’s image takes a hit.

[Indiana Governor Mike] Pence defended the Indiana law by saying he doesn’t think it legalizes discrimination, and N.C. legislators will say it is simply about freedom of religion. But in practice the bills undeniably open the door to discrimination against almost anyone….

Does North Carolina really want to go down this road? Do we want to sanction discrimination by letting anyone deny service to whomever they please? Do we want to jeopardize conventions, job growth and the ability to recruit?

Arizona was going to last year, but under pressure from the NFL and others, Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed the bill. If it reaches his desk, Gov. Pat McCrory should do the same here.”

And here’s another reason to be against the offensive, copycat legislation filed in the North Carolina Senate and House: It’s morally wrong, offensive and un-American. As Think Progress reported yesterday, the discrimination has already started in Indiana. And one doesn’t have to be a MENSA member to imagine the myriad forms of discrimination that some troubled souls in our state would readily engage in if given the green light by state government.

After all, it was the same talk about “religious liberty” that was frequently used as an excuse by those who refused to serve people of color and interracial couples back in the last century. Anyone who thinks that ugly beast wouldn’t reemerge is kidding themselves.

The bottom line: Let’s hope state political and business leaders nip this nonsense in the bud ASAP and that North Carolinians can avoid the ignominy of seeing their governor go on national TV to defend discrimination and hate.

4 Comments


  1. Mayor McCheese

    March 30, 2015 at 11:57 am

    “Troubled”? Don’t you mean “wicked”? Let’s not pull punches with these people.

  2. Arthur

    March 30, 2015 at 1:44 pm

    It will be funny when people start to use this to discriminate against the ones who wrote it. “I refuse to serve Catholics or Jews because its against my religious conviction.” as an example.

  3. LayintheSmakDown

    March 30, 2015 at 6:14 pm

    Hate and racism disguised as “diversity”. That is what the post is about. Forcing someone with a different belief to serve those opposing them is the height of oppression.
    …….
    I am also wondering why the gaysapo wants to do business with those who don’t want to do business with them. If I know that a business opposes my views, I stay away from it rather than patronize them. It is not like there are no alternatives to every business out there, don’t like Walmart….go to Target or Kmart for example.

  4. Alan

    March 30, 2015 at 6:41 pm

    Oppression? I’m suprised you didn’t call it tyranny.

    GOP is the Party of Hate. I wonder who the next enemy de jour will be for the GOP?

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