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OverSword

Indiana's Religious Freedom Bill

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Sundew

I must confess I have not read the law, however, my understanding is that this law mirrors the Federal Religious Freedom Act put into law in 1993 by non other than Bill Clinton. Was there any big controversy at the time, if so I do not remember it? I also believe the Federal law was challenged in Federal Court and upheld.

This reminds me of the State of Arizona's immigration law. It also mirrored the Federal law which the Feds were ignoring. When the State decided to pass and enforce its own version of the law, the Feds sued Arizona, if memory serves.

So to me the question is whether State's Rights can or should supersede Federal Rights when the Federal Government fails to enforce laws already on the books? If you have a nationwide law that is not being enforced, do not the individual sovereign States have a right and a duty to pass their own versions and duly enforce them? And if they mirror Federal Law, why is there suddenly such a stink about it?

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Whisperer

If you open your business to the world then you open your business to anyone...otherwise you have no business operating a business...its all about trade isnt it, not underground dealings....

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Tiggs

I must confess I have not read the law, however, my understanding is that this law mirrors the Federal Religious Freedom Act put into law in 1993 by non other than Bill Clinton.

As far as I understand it, the FRFA only applies if the Government is one of the parties. The Indiana version of the law also applies between private individuals (including corporations), effectively giving corporations legal grounds to discriminate against private individuals, where it was previously impossible to do so before.

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Beany

I can't think of the words to say how despicable this law is, and the people who support it.

Heck, I've got family members who support it and called me an ignorant flaming liberal (gasp, the horror of it) because I am vehemently opposed to it. I'm fine with freedom of religion, but not when a group's religious beliefs are legislated into a law that allows for the discrimination of minorities. I keep reminding myself that there are millions of Christians who are as opposed to this law as I am, and that those who are responsible for this law are most likely a minority group within the Christian community. It's an old story, use religion as an excuse to justify your own bad behavior and commit acts that you probably would want to do anyway.

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Beany

I don't believe a company should be forced to, but the decision will vary by court.

You know, I've read a lot of that, nobody should be forced to. And what about those community members who might be prevented from full participation in their community in the same way heteros do? It's OK that they can't use the same bakery as their neighbors, or can't take their kids to Chuckie Cheese for a birthday party, or drive two miles out of their to drop clothes off at the cleaners, or their kids are denied admittance to a pre-school program, or can't use the same medical providers as their neighbors? That hurts people, you know, all we have to do is look to the South for examples of the harm that kind of thinking causes. So it was OK for businesses to refuse services to people of color, because that was their right? Everyone should have equal participation, even if that means someone is forced to put aside their own religious prejudice and treat everyone decently..

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Beany

As a business owner I should be able to refuse service to anyone I want. No explanation needed. As a property owner I can choose who I let on my property and who I ban. No difference. People can boycott to get the business owner to change his ways, or simply put him out of business by not buying anything from him.

Yeah, that's exactly what business owners in the South did, refused service to people of color. And this differs how? I've been saying this repeatedly, and I'll say it again. Much of the conversation has been about the rights of the business owners. Can we talk about the consequences to the community and individuals if this "right" is exercised? Doesn't it matter that this kind of law causes harm to those being discriminated against? Let's talk about those people, please, how this law might affect them on a daily basis in even the most mundane tasks, and prevents them from participating equally.

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Shiloh17

How about a "No adulterers" sign posted outside next to the "No homosexuals" sign. That would guarantee no business. Oh, but I forget, people take the parts of the Bible they like, and ignore the rest.

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and then

Does anyone else find it somewhat mind boggling that christians make up EIGHTY FOUR percent of the US population and yet still play the victim card at every turn?

Christians are not victims rafterman. We CHOSE this path and we have no need to try to force others to follow it. The antagonism you display is exactly what I am speaking about. It's relatively mild for now but if you are honest with yourself you will have to admit that it is increasing and will continue to do. Those who are angry and wish to spite Christians will have free reign to do so and I say BRING IT! :) Greater is He who is in me than he who is in the world! :clap:
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Big Jim

I must admit this is a tough one. It's not as if gays are the only ones who have rights. We are guaranteed by the Constitution our right to freely express our religious beliefs. Gays, of course, have the right to be gay. When the rights of two opposing groups are in contention with each other, how do we decide? I'm neither religious nor gay so I have to imagine myself on one side or the other of this debate, and on either side I can see my rights being infringed upon. As a baker or florist I may not want to use my talents to help celebrate a union I don't believe in. As a gay person I expect the right to shop where I choose. I really don't know how to decide whose rights have priority. Does this law require Muslim owned catering services to serve pork? Or does their religion let them refuse? Does a Jewish owned business have to serve me on the Sabbath? I'm not wise enough to have the answers, nor, I suspect, are the legislators in Indiana. But that doesn't make either of us mean or anti-anybody. It's just that as we delve deeper into anything it usually raises more questions than answers. As we move from the concept of general rights for everybody to specific rights for this group or that we are going to encounter more dilemmas like this. The only way to move forward, as I see it, is with patience and a genuine interest in preserving everyone's rights and dignity. Name calling and boycotting and other acts of aggression will not get us to where we want to be.

Edited by Big Jim
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Paranormalcy

People that want to "express their belief" are welcome to do so. They just need to get out of the way of actual businesspeople that are serious about commerce, and have their country club meetings somewhere else.

If they want to be a Christian business, then they should advertise publicly that they're a Christian Only Business so they don't have to worry about this - will they do that? Would this be acceptable to others? I'm not sure - it might be possible? It seems like it wouldn't work but I don't know.

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Space Commander Travis

They are thinking "Fags are second class citizens with too much political pull,let's teach them a lesson"

And nearly all vote Democrat .

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Space Commander Travis

Anytime controversy precipitated by the fact that so many Christians seem to have an unhealthy obsession with opposing homosexuality I can't help but wonder if the bible I read is completely different than the one they read. Are they that narrow minded? Empty Headed? Illiterate? I can't find a explanation for it.

It's quite easy, they just stick their bookmark in Leviticus and selected excerpts from the letters of Paul (which were among a great many other opinions on all sorts of things), and avoid mentioning anything at all that Jesus talked about (and he didn't talk about homosexuality at all).
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aquatus1

As a business owner I should be able to refuse service to anyone I want. No explanation needed. As a property owner I can choose who I let on my property and who I ban. No difference. People can boycott to get the business owner to change his ways, or simply put him out of business by not buying anything from him.

The problem is a bit deeper than that. I'm not sure why you believe a business owner should be able to opt out of the rules of the society he is doing business in when it doesn't suit him, or why they deserve any sort of special dispensation, but when all is said and done, the purpose of laws is to provide an even playing field for everyone, not just the ones a given business persons decides they want to do business with. Reasons to exclude customers are based on the customers breaking the laws or regulations. If the customers are not breaking the law, business owners don't get to create personal laws for denying them service.

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Wickian

You know, I've read a lot of that, nobody should be forced to. And what about those community members who might be prevented from full participation in their community in the same way heteros do? It's OK that they can't use the same bakery as their neighbors, or can't take their kids to Chuckie Cheese for a birthday party, or drive two miles out of their to drop clothes off at the cleaners, or their kids are denied admittance to a pre-school program, or can't use the same medical providers as their neighbors? That hurts people, you know, all we have to do is look to the South for examples of the harm that kind of thinking causes. So it was OK for businesses to refuse services to people of color, because that was their right? Everyone should have equal participation, even if that means someone is forced to put aside their own religious prejudice and treat everyone decently..

If the community feels so strongly that a wedding cake baker should be punished because they don't support gay marriage, let a boycott and bad press do the job of punishing them. Any private business that provides a non-essential service or product should have the right to refuse service to anyone they want for any reason.

Edited by Wickian
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Arbenol

Notwithstanding people's protestations that any business should be entitiled to choose who they trade with, they are rather missing the point here.

The Act is specific in that it protects religious freedom. The freedom to discriminate on the grounds that this is in line with something written in an ancient book.

Do all religions get this 'freedom'.

How is religion a more justifiable reason for discriminating than any other reason?

If it is illegal to discriminate on the basis of sexuality, why does religion get a free pass?

This is special pleading of the most repulsive kind.

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Thorvir

Okay.

Scenario A:

Gay couple enters wedding cake bakery. They ask for a specific cake, the owner declines stating that she does not support gay marriage, as it is against her faith. Couple go ballistic, make a scene, file a lawsuit, and the bakery is forced to go out of business.

Scenario 2

Gay couple enters wedding cake bakery. They ask for a specific cake, the owner declines stating that she does not support gay marriage, as it is against her faith. Couple understands, says they will go to a different bakery that does, leaves and finds a bakery that does. Everyone wins.

Why in the world is Scenario A acceptable to the masses but 2 is so horribly wrong? Why all of the hatred and bigotry against these kinds of business owners (this more of a rhetorical question, as it's easy to deduce why).

Taken from another forum:

When it comes down to it, this is just states, and it's a lot of states, not just Indiana, integrating existing Federal Law into their State Law. It happens all the time. And the Federal Law in question was signed by none other than the previous Liberal Messiah, William Jefferson Clinton.

The Liberals are up in arms because this law SPECIFICALLY ELIMINATES THEIR FAVORITE FORM OF COERCION. When they can't win by democracy and public opinion they force their opinion on the majority by way of the courts, and then exercise Lawfare on those that refuse to change their beliefs.

While I may not fully agree that this is a just a left/right thing, it's the left that I'm seeing exercising a great deal of hypocrisy here. There's nothing wrong with everyone trying to get along and coming to a middle ground, I'm not seeing any of that at this time.

Edited by Thorvir Hrothgaard
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Michelle

The problem is a bit deeper than that. I'm not sure why you believe a business owner should be able to opt out of the rules of the society he is doing business in when it doesn't suit him, or why they deserve any sort of special dispensation, but when all is said and done, the purpose of laws is to provide an even playing field for everyone, not just the ones a given business persons decides they want to do business with. Reasons to exclude customers are based on the customers breaking the laws or regulations. If the customers are not breaking the law, business owners don't get to create personal laws for denying them service.

No soup for you!

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Bama13

The problem is a bit deeper than that. I'm not sure why you believe a business owner should be able to opt out of the rules of the society he is doing business in when it doesn't suit him, or why they deserve any sort of special dispensation, but when all is said and done, the purpose of laws is to provide an even playing field for everyone, not just the ones a given business persons decides they want to do business with. Reasons to exclude customers are based on the customers breaking the laws or regulations. If the customers are not breaking the law, business owners don't get to create personal laws for denying them service.

The "rules of the society"? Those rules will permit me to discriminate against people coming to my house, so why would they prevent me from discriminating in my place of business? I'm not sure why you believe a business owner should be held to a different standard than the society he is doing business in.

You mean that as a manager I did not have the right to refuse service to anyone I wanted with no reason required? Really? Hmmm... strangely I did just that several times. A few times I even called the police to escort someone from the restaurant. Police never asked why I wanted them gone, just told them to leave on their own or leave in cuffs. Excluding customers is based on whether the owner/manager wants to serve a particular person. Nothing else required.

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OverSword

I must confess I have not read the law, however, my understanding is that this law mirrors the Federal Religious Freedom Act put into law in 1993 by non other than Bill Clinton.

I too have not read the law but read this argument you posted is false and that the two laws are completely different.

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Stubbly_Dooright

The whole uproar over this law is blown out of proportion. It's nothing new and several other states(and the federal government) have an equivalent law on the books already. All it says is unless you have a good reason, you can't force a group or business to do something against their beliefs. Discrimination(if you can prove it) is probably a good enough reason.

The thing, if I am getting this right, this law allows to prioritize one belief over others. My observation (including me) shows varying beliefs in this country. To me, it's like saying the belief of one business owner should be prioritized over another and this is going against what this country is about, right? The rights of everyone should be considered, and that is the welfare of anyone, and what a person believes and judges about someone else, I think trumps over their rights. Mostly so, when I consider if a gay couple is refused to be served in a restaurant, (to be fed, for crying out loud!). What was enacted in the formation of this country was, I believe, for the good and health and protection of everyone. This law allows to harm others for judgmental reasons. I don't get it, I just don't. :no:

Heck, I've got family members who support it and called me an ignorant flaming liberal (gasp, the horror of it) because I am vehemently opposed to it. I'm fine with freedom of religion, but not when a group's religious beliefs are legislated into a law that allows for the discrimination of minorities. I keep reminding myself that there are millions of Christians who are as opposed to this law as I am, and that those who are responsible for this law are most likely a minority group within the Christian community. It's an old story, use religion as an excuse to justify your own bad behavior and commit acts that you probably would want to do anyway.

That's what I see in it.I sometimes think I see this when some male conservatives veto an anti-domestic abuse bill. I often read their reasoning to what it's wrong to do so, which gets my eyebrows up. In the end, it's usually their means to their own self-agenda end. In the end, I find this is all just a self-aborbed goal painted as a good thing, in which I feel is not.

I must admit this is a tough one. It's not as if gays are the only ones who have rights. We are guaranteed by the Constitution our right to freely express our religious beliefs. Gays, of course, have the right to be gay. When the rights of two opposing groups are in contention with each other, how do we decide? I'm neither religious nor gay so I have to imagine myself on one side or the other of this debate, and on either side I can see my rights being infringed upon. As a baker or florist I may not want to use my talents to help celebrate a union I don't believe in. As a gay person I expect the right to shop where I choose. I really don't know how to decide whose rights have priority. Does this law require Muslim owned catering services to serve pork? Or does their religion let them refuse? Does a Jewish owned business have to serve me on the Sabbath? I'm not wise enough to have the answers, nor, I suspect, are the legislators in Indiana. But that doesn't make either of us mean or anti-anybody. It's just that as we delve deeper into anything it usually raises more questions than answers. As we move from the concept of general rights for everybody to specific rights for this group or that we are going to encounter more dilemmas like this. The only way to move forward, as I see it, is with patience and a genuine interest in preserving everyone's rights and dignity. Name calling and boycotting and other acts of aggression will not get us to where we want to be.

I hear ya, here. The way I see it, though, as someone who has worked in retail all her adult life, there is a level of professionalism and common sense. My take, I guess. *shrugs* I have my own personal strong beliefs as well, as a holder of varying view points. I would love to not wait on a sexist, bigoted, individual who wants items on their own agenda. I would wish not to sell to them. The thing is, it's not my place. I'm hired to do a job, and it's to serve the public. ALL of the public. Every member of the public is equal. I just clam up, keep that smile on my face, and then wait til I have another individual to wait on. The job I am being paid trumps my personal view points. When that type of person comes to my own door, than I feel I have a right to shut the door on them.
Aquatus1:

The problem is a bit deeper than that. I'm not sure why you believe a business owner should be able to opt out of the rules of the society he is doing business in when it doesn't suit him, or why they deserve any sort of special dispensation, but when all is said and done, the purpose of laws is to provide an even playing field for everyone, not just the ones a given business persons decides they want to do business with. Reasons to exclude customers are based on the customers breaking the laws or regulations. If the customers are not breaking the law, business owners don't get to create personal laws for denying them service.

No soup for you!

You see, I like this post. (if anyone gets the soup nazi example from the show 'Seinfield') I wonder how funny we always find those scenes with the soup nazi and wonder if we are laughing because the soup guy has the gall to not sell to who he sees fits and that it might be wrong. (then again, this was a show about nothing ;) ) And maybe we can learn a lesson from it, because Elaine found the recipe and got him back. :D

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.......................... Oooops, spoiler! :devil:

Edited by Stubbly_Dooright
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Stubbly_Dooright

The "rules of the society"? Those rules will permit me to discriminate against people coming to my house, so why would they prevent me from discriminating in my place of business? I'm not sure why you believe a business owner should be held to a different standard than the society he is doing business in.

I think there is a big difference here, between your personal rights, and then being paid to serve the personal rights of everyone.
You mean that as a manager I did not have the right to refuse service to anyone I wanted with no reason required? Really? Hmmm... strangely I did just that several times. A few times I even called the police to escort someone from the restaurant. Police never asked why I wanted them gone, just told them to leave on their own or leave in cuffs. Excluding customers is based on whether the owner/manager wants to serve a particular person. Nothing else required.

I wonder if that is right. I always observed there has to be a good reason if the cops are called, and even then wonder if has damaged an individual who didn't deserve to be treated as such. Kind of like Target employees forced on the Walk of Shame http://www.businessinsider.com/target-workers-claim-walk-of-shame-is-widespread-2015-2 situation. Yeah, this is where it's the employees being the subject of discussion here and not customers, but I think it has the same point of tragically harming an individual emotionally and psychologically when there is no reason for it. Who is anyone that resorts to things like this, when more harm than good comes from it. I think you have to have a really good reason, and the police should have a more understanding of what is going on to do this.

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OverSword

Yeah, that's exactly what business owners in the South did, refused service to people of color. And this differs how? I've been saying this repeatedly, and I'll say it again. Much of the conversation has been about the rights of the business owners. Can we talk about the consequences to the community and individuals if this "right" is exercised? Doesn't it matter that this kind of law causes harm to those being discriminated against? Let's talk about those people, please, how this law might affect them on a daily basis in even the most mundane tasks, and prevents them from participating equally.

You're arguing with the wrong person Beany. He has already stated that he was all for business owners in the south being able to refuse to serve people based on skin color.

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F3SS

Okay.

Scenario A:

Gay couple enters wedding cake bakery. They ask for a specific cake, the owner declines stating that she does not support gay marriage, as it is against her faith. Couple go ballistic, make a scene, file a lawsuit, and the bakery is forced to go out of business.

Scenario 2

Gay couple enters wedding cake bakery. They ask for a specific cake, the owner declines stating that she does not support gay marriage, as it is against her faith. Couple understands, says they will go to a different bakery that does, leaves and finds a bakery that does. Everyone wins.

Why in the world is Scenario A acceptable to the masses but 2 is so horribly wrong? Why all of the hatred and bigotry against these kinds of business owners (this more of a rhetorical question, as it's easy to deduce why).

Taken from another forum:

While I may not fully agree that this is a just a left/right thing, it's the left that I'm seeing exercising a great deal of hypocrisy here. There's nothing wrong with everyone trying to get along and coming to a middle ground, I'm not seeing any of that at this time.

I like scenario 2. If you're that nasty of a business you won't succeed. Scenario 1 only encourages busybodies and trouble makers to seek controversy.

To answer the last question is simple. Liberal tolerance is an oxymoron. They don't tolerate anything they don't like. Many live in the land of perpetual outrage and that would not be the case if they lived in the world of tolerance that they prescribe for you.

Also, this is not the same thing as segregation. Segregation was discrimination by law. Where in this law does it give orders to discriminate?

And to the guy who equates small business owners with snobby bigoted country club members... Well there are so many degrees of flippant prejudice, slander and broad stroke generalizations in there but most of all what leads you to believe that small business owners in general are or could be country clubbers? That's such an asinine statement to even think small business owners have that type of money and kills your statement with that tidbit alone.

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Bama13

You're arguing with the wrong person Beany. He has already stated that he was all for business owners in the south being able to refuse to serve people based on skin color.

Why did you feel the need to single out "business owners in the south" when I made no such distinction? I also didn't limit it to skin color.

I feel like the business owner should have the right to refuse service to any one or group of people with no reason required. I also stated that I would not patronize such an establishment and would actively boycott any such business. I will not run to the government to solve all my problems. I feel like this is a problem we can solve though customer action. You may feel differently. That is okay. No need to demonize anyone here.

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OverSword

I must admit this is a tough one. It's not as if gays are the only ones who have rights. We are guaranteed by the Constitution our right to freely express our religious beliefs. Gays, of course, have the right to be gay. When the rights of two opposing groups are in contention with each other, how do we decide?

It's not tough. Gay people being gay in no way, shape, or form prevents a Christian from being a Christian and selling a wedding cake or flowers to gays does not prevent people from being Christians. What use a customer puts a cake or flowers to once the purchase has been made is not the concern of a business. This law is all about freeing business owners from the legal consequences of discriminating based on sexual preference. Period.
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