Secularism is dead. At least it is in Indiana after Governor Mike Pence (R) signed the states new religious freedom bill into law giving business the right to discriminate against and refuse services to same-sex couples if they have religious objections.
“The Constitution of the United States and the Indiana Constitution both provide strong recognition of the freedom of religion, but today, many people of faith feel their religious liberty is under attack by government action,” Pence said in a statement.
What Gov. Pence means by liberty here is a religious persons right to discriminate and hide behind his or her religious beliefs as justification. This bill will allow wedding planners, bakers, and well, just about anyone else to refuse service to same-sex couples because they think it’s “icky.”
This bill does nothing to protect religious freedom, it only serves to uphold religious privilege.
Many business have strongly opposed the bill and convention promotors from conventions such as the table top gaming Gen Con have threatened to leave the state if the governor signed the bill.The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) sent a letter to Pence on Wednesday threatening to cancel its 2017 convention in Indy if he signs the measure into law.
“Our perspective is that hate and bigotry wrapped in religious freedom is still hate and bigotry,” Todd Adams, the associate general minister and vice president of the Indianapolis-based denomination, told The Indianapolis Star.
Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff tweeted that the company was canceling all programs that would require customers or employees to travel to Indiana,
Today we are canceling all programs that require our customers/employees to travel to Indiana to face discrimination. http://t.co/SvTwyCHxvE
— Marc Benioff (@Benioff) March 26, 2015
Without a doubt business who refuse service to same-sex couples will end up having their day in court and this bill and others like it will eventually find their way to the Supreme Court and with any luck and constitutional integrity, the courts will strike down such laws that relegate same-sex couples to second class citizenship.