Category Archives: Politics

Why Do Religious Freedom Restoration Acts Open The Door To Discrimination?

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photo of Indiana Governor Mike Pence
Indiana Governor Mike Pence trying to put lipstick on a pig

In a previous post, I used the title ‘Indiana Ends Fair And Equal Treatment‘ in response to Governor Pence signing a Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law. RFRA’s have opened the door to discrimination since the federal version was used in the Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Supreme Court decision back in June.
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Indiana Ends Fair And Equal Treatment

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I was going to write a long winded post about the ‘Religious Freedom’ law signed by Indiana’s Governor Mike Pence today but I decided Brandan Robertson, on his blog Revangelical, made the kind of point I would be making. Basically, laws like Indiana’s ‘Religious Freedom’ law makes a mockery out of ideals of fair and equal treatment that evolved from the civil rights struggle.

Here is an official photo of the private signing ceremony. Governor Pence is seated at the desk. We know Catholics are well represented but where are the atheists and Muslims?
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Removing Restriction On Electioneering Might Be A Good Thing

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clipart of preaching from the pulpitEarlier this month, as soon as the Republican party took full control of both houses of Congress, Rep. Walter Jones [R-NC-3] introduced a bill that would remove the electioneering prohibition for churches and other 501(c)3 tax-exempt groups. This is a good and bad bill so I’m torn over it. While it would open a Pandora’s box of electioneering for churches, the current language of the bill would remove the restriction for all tax-exempt groups.
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Mormons Will Stop Fighting LGBT Rights As Long As They Get A Free Pass On Their Bigotry

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clipart of the symbol of MormonismToday the Mormon church held a press conference to announce they plan to give up fighting LGBT equality. There is a string attached. They want special treatment to express their bigotry in public. The problem is religious people can’t demand special protection for beliefs that can hurt people.
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Using Zoning Laws To Protect Religious Privilege

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photo of the inside of a strip club
I’m sure there are plenty of believers in a strip club

One tool local governments use to protect religious privilege are zoning laws. They are regulations that spell out what people can and can’t do with their property. Many zoning regulations specifically spell out protections for religious property like churches while other zoning laws are used more subtly like getting a Zombie Nativity removed.
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Governor Kasich’s Stealth Religious Tactics Draw Complaints

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photo of Ohio Gov Kasich
Ohio Governor John Kasich

A new Ohio law gave tax money to groups who mentored public school children, which is a good thing. However Gov. Kasich decided to force mentoring programs to partner with faith-based groups. Kasich believes, wrongly, that the public school should be where children get their religious education.
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