“Let us pray… Oh Lord, we beseech you to strengthen us in our hour of need, as we spread your love to everyone. Except the gays. Help us prosper in our businesses, as we serve the needs of our fellow man. Except the gays. Give us this day our daily bread, both the baked kind, and the green kind, as we serve the citizens of Arizona. Except the gays. Amen.”
Arizona’s House of Representatives today passed HB 2153, which I’m calling the “Freedom to Hate the Gays in God’s Name” bill, which will allow people and businesses to discriminate against the LGBT community (and no doubt any other group they (dis)like), as long as they’re willing to affirm that conducting business with them would be ‘against their religion’.
The bill, matching the Senate’s vote on SB 1062 yesterday, now goes to Governor Jan Brewer for signature or veto. Although she vetoed a similar bill in the past, many pundits expect her to sign.
Passed along party lines, this again demonstrates in stark detail how the GOP feels about the LGBT community. Couched in “religious freedom”, and “protecting the religious (majority!) from “discrimination” by a vocal minority” terms, the Arizona GOP would make it legal for any person or business in that state to refuse to conduct business with someone just because they’re gay. Or, if the religious freedom aspect is to be truly believed, for being divorced, or being a drunkard, or being deformed, or being… well, just about anything, since the Bible lists pretty much everything imaginable when it comes to discriminating against people, if you look hard enough, and squint just right. All folks have to do is say “God told me so”, and they get a free pass from the laws the rest of us have to obey.
We’re assuming a Federal Court somewhere will strike this down, eventually, if the Governor signs it into law. In the meantime, however, Arizona will have to deal with the fallout, from bad press, being the butt of the standup comics across the nation, and the ridicule of social media. The #ItsADryHate hashtag is already spreading across Twitter and Facebook.
“Dear Lord, protect us from your followers,” goes a saying often spoken by non-Christians.