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Here's more of that slippery slope analysts have been talking about in the wake of the Supreme Court's Hobby Lobby decision. If you can now legally discriminate against women in the workplace, Kansas religious conservatives are thinking, you can legally discriminate against the gays.
The Associated Press reported this weekend that social conservatives believe they have an opening to bring the state's religious freedom bill back in 2015. The legislation failed this spring; it passed the House, but stalled in the Senate after significant backlash from business groups. It would have prevented businesses from being sued if they refused to serve LGBT people for religious reasons.

"We are not going to let it die. We are very committed," Rev. Terry Fox, a leading Southern Baptist minister, told the AP. "The Body of Christ is a powerful movement when it comes together." […]

"The opinion really doesn't really resolve the question of whether for-profit businesses can seek religious exemptions from anti-discrimination law," Douglas NeJaime, a law professor at the University of California-Irvine, told TPM. "If I'm one of those groups, I'm going to pursue this."

Kansas surely won't be the only place this fight crops up again. (Looking at you, Arizona.) In this case, though, gay rights activists believe they've got Kennedy on their side for any litigation that could reach the high court. But because of continued opposition by business groups in the states, the efforts can probably be beat back at the state level.

Nevertheless, the Roberts Five on the Supreme Court have given the green light to zealots to claim legal justification for spreading their hate.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 09:31 AM PDT.

Also republished by Kansas & Missouri Kossacks and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (38+ / 0-)

    "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. [...] There would be no place to hide."--Frank Church

    by Joan McCarter on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 09:31:51 AM PDT

  •  Watch Indiana as well. It's a stealth extremist (18+ / 0-)

    state.

    "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 09:39:32 AM PDT

  •  Let them pass it (24+ / 0-)

    And if Brownback is stupid enough to sign it, all the better. I think the more signs of active anti-gay bigotry we have the better, because we're in an era where all that we need to get ENDA passed is proof like this that it's necessary.

    Remember, the problem ENDA has is that too many people think it's already law. These bills show it isn't.

    All it takes is security in your own civil rights to make you complacent.

    by Dave in Northridge on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 09:43:08 AM PDT

    •  Personally I want to know who the bigots are (17+ / 0-)

      And I want to know so that they don't get any of my money.  Anti-discrimination law is a double edged sword.  Sure theoretically it prevents discrimination and ensures access to all private services.  But it doesn't end bigotry in business.  It doesn't end disgusting acts like spitting in food or intentional bad service.  It lets bigotry sit there and fester under the surface, and lets the bigots continue to enrich themselves off businesses they don't deserve to have.

      So let the bigots come out of the closet loud and proud.  Let them bar their doors to paying customers.  I want to know who is undeserving of my money.  I want to know which establishments to vigorously avoid.  And I want to watch those businesses slowly go bankrupt.

      Wouldn't you want to know if the owner of a restaurant you eat at actively despises you?

      •  Exactly! Vote with our wallets! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TrueBlueMajority, ditsylilg

        It's a miracle, Another miracle. By the grace of God Almighty And the pressures of marketplace, The human race has civilized itself, It's a miracle!

        Kriya Yoga burns bad karma faster than you can make it!

        by Mahasaya on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 11:15:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I couldn't care less what goes on in someone's (0+ / 0-)

        head. It's their actions that matter.

        To believe that markets determine value is to believe that milk comes from plastic bottles. Bromley (1985)

        by sneakers563 on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 11:42:14 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  What about the actions you don't see? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          TrueBlueMajority

          So you eat at a restaurant, not knowing that the owner is an anti-gay bigot, because he keeps it hidden.  And then takes the profit you pay him, and donates it to anti-gay causes.  Maybe it's your favorite restaurant, you've eaten there for years, and all the while you're funding his bigotry without ever knowing it.  I'd rather it be all out in the open, so I know who's who.

          •  I understand that. And if they are so strong in (3+ / 0-)

            their beliefs, I suggest they advertise it on the fronts of their stores...

            --We do NOT employ persons LGBT
            --We would really like not to have to employ blacks or other people that aren't white
            --We don't have a drinking fountain, but if we did, we'd have two; one for we whites, one for everyone else.
            --We are opposed to birth control. Lots of kids ups our profits, and besides... God.

            For many, it would be a list a whole lot longer.

            The only hawk I like is the kind that has feathers. My birding blogs: http://thisskysings.wordpress.com/ and canyonbirds.net

            by cany on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 12:59:42 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  heck I am waiting for WP types to insist (15+ / 0-)

    they are not covered by the Civil Rights Act or to forbid employees from marrying outside of their "race" or any other number of various "devoutly held religious beliefs".  

    While HL was meant to be a very narrow decision, it did not take 24 hrs for the religious right to immediately begin pushing various other perceived slights against them by secular society.  It appears there are some 100 possible cases already in the pipeline with 100s more possible other ones waiting in the wings.

    •  They are right to push (4+ / 0-)

      Yes, and the religious is right to pull open the lid of the  Pandora's box which the SCOTUS arrogantly unlocked. There is no legal principle behind the Supreme Court's HL ruling. It was capricious, decided purely on the personal wishes of the conservative justices. They are a disgrace.

      The degree of contempt toward the Constitution, and to legal precedent exhibited by this court is breathtaking. Logical attempts by the religious right and other corporations to immediately expand the HL ruling will lay bare the total unfitness of the conservative justices for duty on the Supreme Court.

    •  I'm waiting for them to just announce (instead (0+ / 0-)

      of trying to hide it) all white charter schools.

      Sadly, I know some folks who'd be first in line to pay a fortune for that.

      The only hawk I like is the kind that has feathers. My birding blogs: http://thisskysings.wordpress.com/ and canyonbirds.net

      by cany on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 01:01:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'm assuming LGBTs can't discriminate though (15+ / 0-)

    Even if the bill were to pass, something tells me it won't allow for, say, a gay social worker who refuses to place children with a couple who belong to an anti-gay church. This is all about protecting the superiority of "Christianity" as defined by whoever happens to be in power.

    "There is no crack in our pies." - Michelle Obama 6/30/2014

    by CPT Doom on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 10:09:32 AM PDT

  •  Kansas has its own version of the RFRA. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, shoeless

    That would put it on firmer ground in applying the reasoning of Hobby.

  •  Not to mention some church groups, largely (8+ / 0-)

    Catholic, but including the huge mega-church led by Rick Warren, are NOW asking Obama to include a "religious exemption in your planned executive order addressing federal contractors and LGBT employment policies".

    In other words, our tax dollars could be used to discriminate against LBGT(Q?) persons.

    John Aravosis covered the issue here on Americablog.

    It's not like Warren doesn't have a terrible history (even if he continually tries to stamp it out or recreate it) on issues LGBT.

    The letter was sent a day after Hobby Lobby. Yep, another "unintended" consequence.

    Federal funds cannot be used for a LEGAL medical procedure called abortion but can be administered to include discrimination.  Just dandy.

    The only hawk I like is the kind that has feathers. My birding blogs: http://thisskysings.wordpress.com/ and canyonbirds.net

    by cany on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 10:12:34 AM PDT

  •  Of all the pressing matters in society today, (7+ / 0-)

    What is it with the obsession with LGBT folks? You'd think these bigots had better things to do.

    SPES MEA IN DEO EST.

    by commonmass on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 10:24:09 AM PDT

  •  religion (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    librarisingnsf, Ellid

    What does it take to be legally accepted as a religion?  Could we start a new one, created to believe all people are equal and, those that serve bigots will go to Hell.

    Actions speak louder than petitions.

    by melvynny on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 10:56:20 AM PDT

  •  is there precedent for undoing a precedent? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    1toughlady

    some supreme court historian can answer this without breaking a sweat:  has the supreme court ever reversed a ruling made by the same set of justices?

    not that i expect that that would happen even when this matter goes overtly horrible.

  •  Hobby Lobby, Hobby Lobby, Hobby Lobby (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jan4insight, Ellid

    This one has rung the bell, hasn't it?  Harry Reid said he has something that he wants to do to thwart this decision.  Can he actually change the effects of this?  How so?  Isn't a SCOTUS decision kind of final?  

    This one has really pissed off the activists in some kind of big way !!!!

    •  HobbyLobby is legislation not constitutional (4+ / 0-)

      The court ruled that Hobby Lobby faced a substantial burden under the "Religious Freedom Restoration Act". Congress can just change the law to make it clear that it doesn't apply to corporations and the decision is moot.

      Of course, Congress can't pass anything at all right now. So unless Harry Reid's plan is for the Democrats to (stunningly) take control of the House of Representatives in November, it's not clear what he's talking about.

    •  Constitutional Analysis of Refusal-to-Serve Laws (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rabel, internationaljock

      I recently wrote a law review article that (1) compares the push for religious exemptions that would allow businesses to refuse service to same-sex couples with the lack of a similar push when interracial marriage bans were being debated in the Civil Rights era, (2) addresses the reasons for the discrepancy, and (3) argues that, if adopted, the exemptions currently being proposed would be vulnerable to challenge under the Equal Protection Clause. I'm in the process of updating the article to account for the Supreme Court's decision in Hobby Lobby, but the working draft (which was written with the expectation that the Court would likely rule in favor of Hobby Lobby, and which discusses the lower court's decision in Hobby Lobby's favor) is available online here:

      Interracial and Same-Sex Marriages: Similar Religious Objections, Very Different Responses

      I'll be posting an updated draft accounting for the Hobby Lobby decision next week.

      On the equal protection issue, here's one of the key passages:

      In Windsor, the Court instructed that “discriminations of an unusual character” warrant “careful consideration,” and it found that an “unusual deviation from the usual tradition” that “operate[d] to deprive same-sex couples” of customary benefits available to others was “strong evidence of a law having the purpose or effect of disapproval of that class.”  Exempting commercial business owners from the obligation to comply with antidiscrimination laws on religious grounds would not only be “unusual,” it would be unique.  Although many Americans had religious objections to interracial marriage in the 1960s,  and although some still do today,  federal and state antidiscrimination laws have never included exemptions that would allow business owners to deny services based on those beliefs. Likewise, although the Bible quotes Jesus Christ explicitly condemning divorce and remarriage as adultery,  and although such remarriages violate the current teachings of the largest Christian denomination in America,  state laws prohibiting discrimination based on marital status  do not contain exemptions allowing commercial businesses to refuse to facilitate the remarriages of divorced people. Only after same-sex couples were allowed to marry was there an effort to allow business owners to discriminate for religious reasons, and such an “unusual deviation from the usual tradition” would appear to be “strong evidence” under Windsor of an unconstitutional intent “to impose a disadvantage, a separate status, and so a stigma upon all who enter into same-sex marriages.”
  •  Yep (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    internationaljock, mrsfixit

    When Kansas makes headlines, it's always for something backward and embarrassing.

  •  Like a fly in the spiders web, more is less. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Forest Deva, mrsfixit

    "We are not going to let it die. We are very committed," Rev. Terry Fox, a leading Southern Baptist minister, told the AP. "The Body of Christ is a powerful movement when it comes together."

    I have met Jesus Christ, he is a friend of mine and he would never approve of such intolerance and human judgment.

    "You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye." Matthew 7:5

    Free Babaji!

    Kriya Yoga burns bad karma faster than you can make it!

    by Mahasaya on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 11:10:54 AM PDT

  •  Good grief. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ellid

    We knew this would happen, and I suspect the SCOTUS knew as well.  They are on the verge of finding that a mere law - RFRA - trumps Constitutional rights by letting religious preferences trump everything else.

    This makes GOTV all that more important in November.  And since a gridlocked Congress will be unable to undo the damage being imposed by the SCOTUS Five, a rise in civil disobedience is become more likely.  It'll get ugly.

    "The truest measure of compassion lies not in our service of those on the margins, but in our willingness to see ourselves in kinship with them." Father Gregory Boyle, Homeboy Industries

    by Mr MadAsHell on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 11:18:56 AM PDT

  •  Can't work. Has to be a corporation, not a state (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cany, The Old Grouch

    a state can;t have a religion, a company like HL will have to sue for the right to fire gays

    "The poor can never be made to suffer enough." Jimmy Breslin

    by merrywidow on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 11:36:41 AM PDT

    •  Well, that might be coming right up... (0+ / 0-)

      See here at Americablog.

      The only hawk I like is the kind that has feathers. My birding blogs: http://thisskysings.wordpress.com/ and canyonbirds.net

      by cany on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 12:55:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  There is a movement in North Carolina to "nullify" (0+ / 0-)

      those parts of the Constitution, and Amendments, thereto, that the State Legislature doesn't agree with, including the 1st Amendment and ESTABLISHING their notion of "christianity" - according to the Evangetaliban and Southern Baptists - as the "State Religion of North Carolina. I kid you not!

  •  LGBT is just the beginning... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MarcKyle64, Ellid

    Anyone who isn't a WASP born again Christian will be on their hate radar.

    I'm sure these religitards won't want to employ atheists either. Or Jews. Or Muslims. Or live with them either.

    With the buffer law also struck down, how long will it be until zealots are standing outside of synagogues spitting on the people entering and calling them "Christ killers", or standing outside of mosques and calling those who enter "terrorists"?

    Will you have to prove your love for Jesus to get a job, rent an apartment, live in a certain neighborhood, or just generally live in peace free from these God Gangsters?

    I have never seen so much hate, vitriol, bigotry, and intolerance inflicted on others as that from the devotees of a deity supposed to be so "loving" and "forgiving".

    I am glad I'm an atheist. I believe in live and let live, and AFAIC that makes me a whole lot better person than the cowardly monsters who defile their own beliefs with their vile actions.

    "When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." -Sinclair Lewis

    by mrsfixit on Tue Jul 08, 2014 at 11:49:30 AM PDT

  •  Anyone, and EVERYONE, concerned should (0+ / 0-)

    read, and ponder, the Dissent written by Madam Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, if you really want to OBJECTIVELY assess the potentials of the Hobby Lobby decision!

    The Scali-Alito Siamese-abortion has, quite effectively, done exactly what Scalia talked about way back when he was being confirmed as a Justice:  i.e., made the Constitution of the United States nothing more than "another piece of paper" - which was a Scalia reference later used by Alito as well, during his confirmation hearings.

    Look it all up for yourselves.

  •  Political activity? (0+ / 0-)

    Rev. Terry Fox needs to have his church's tax-exempt status terminated.

  •  It's all for the best (0+ / 0-)

    No service for gays, no birth control services under a firms insurance, (just might start a new surge of firms offering insurance so they can deny coverage for objectionable services) no refuge for children from war torn South American states.

    Seems like just the GOTV we need, sounds like the way to educate the members of the millennial generation about what Republicans stand for.

    Short term, medium term, long term it's all good.

    Just GOTV 2014, 2016, 2018, 2020...

    BTW, who gerrymanders a voting district?

    The several state legislatures do!  Might be to our advantage to GOTV for those contests too no matter when they are.

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