March 30, 2015

Instead of picking on Indiana, why don't we figure out if we want RFRA laws or not?

Here's Jonathan Adler's explanation of "What will the Indiana religious freedom law really do?"
RFRA laws are common, as shown by this map. Whether or not such laws are good policy, they are about accommodating religious belief, not authorizing discrimination....

The Indiana RFRA is not identical to every other RFRA, but the textual differences are not particularly material....

Are there any scenarios in which a state-level RFRA might result in an individual business owner denying service to a same-sex couple? Perhaps. The most likely scenario would be something like a religious wedding planner refusing to help plan a wedding that violates his or her religious beliefs. But even if such laws eventually allow this sort of thing, it is a far cry from... a general license to discriminate against one’s neighbors....
Indiana has focused attention on RFRA laws, but it's stupid to focus on Indiana. These laws are all over the place. Understand them. Understand how they apply in many different scenarios and how they are limited by courts in their application. Understand that if we're going to relieve religious believers of the burdens of generally applicable laws, courts are going to have to avoid preferring one religion over another. You can't accommodate the religions you agree with or think are sweet and fuzzy and say no to the ones who seem mean or ugly. We need to figure that out. If, in the end, you think the Indiana RFRA is a bad idea, check that map and see if your state has RFRA (or a RFRA-like state constitutional provision) and push for repeal in your state. And get after Congress. Congress started it. Unless you're Hoosier, leave Indiana alone. Stop otherizing Indiana.

AND: I had to wonder What does Garrett Epps think about this? Because Garrett Epps wrote a whole book about how terrible it was for the U.S. Supreme Court to deny special exceptions to religious believers, especially in that case where Native Americans wanted the freedom to use peyote. As I predicted, Epps is otherizing Indiana.

215 comments:

1 – 200 of 215   Newer›   Newest»
The Drill SGT said...

Unless you're Hoosier, leave Indiana alone. Stop otherizing Indiana.

It's really not an Indiana thing, or even a religion thing so much as the Gay Power thugs wanting to intimidate.

After all, in order for a RFRA issue to arise, doesn't a government agency have to be attempting to enforce some religion intruding regulation?



Widmerpool said...

Tolerance alone is not sufficient, Indiana. We demand your complete approval of all aspects of gay life by all of your residents.

Curious George said...

"But even if such laws eventually allow this sort of thing, it is a far cry from... a general license to discriminate against one’s neighbors..."

Bullshit. I have it on good authority (lefty facebook friends) that the Indiana RFRA law allows Hoosiers to kill gays if they want to.

MadisonMan said...

but the textual differences are not particularly material

Is that true though. A textual difference can open up a huge can of worms.

IANAL, but my reading was that Indiana's law was peculiarly lax in the requirement to show how the activity you're being forced (perhaps) to perform impacts your religious beliefs.

If Pence really thinks this is Good Law (I said this before), he should've more out-and-proudly signed it, rather than doing in a closet somewhere behind closed doors, with all the bill supporters. No one likes a coward for a politician, and it makes opponents circle like sharks.

Richard Dolan said...

The federal RFRA was inspired by a case involving the use of peyote in a Native American ritual. It's the sort of thing that appeals to the lefty (and perhaps for different reasons, the righty) conscience. The recent round of RFRA cases have varied from Hobby Lobby (righties all for it, lefties not so much), to Christian bakers and wedding planners declining to work on gay nuptials (ditto). In Europe, issues like male circumcision and female genital mutilation have caused trouble. Just a matter of time before those troubles show up here, requiring lots of weird line drawing and really screwing up the lefty/righty dichotomy. And there's always that old favorite, the Jehovah W's prohibition on blood transfusions.

Bay Area Guy said...

Ahh, the famous Smith case rears its odd-shaped head. Short version, without googling or fact-checking for accuracy:

1. Dude in Oregon took peyote, was fired from state job, because taking peyote violated state drug law

2. Dude in Oregon claimed that taking peyote was part of his religion (he was Native American).

3. SCOTUS (Scalia author) says, sorry, there's no religious exemption for laws of general applicability (drug laws).

4. Liberals outraged. Unite with Conservatives to pass Religious Freedom Act. Yes,if general laws conflict with your religion, you can be exempt from them! Smoke lotsa peyote, you religious Indians! Your religion should trump the law!

5. Fast forward 20 years -- umm, laws supporting gay rights, conflict with my religion. Can I be exempt from baking wedding cakes for gays?

How dare you!!!


Ann Althouse said...

"Is that true though. A textual difference can open up a huge can of worms."

Go to the link where there's a link to the analysis. The opinion stated is only that the textual differences here aren't significant, not that textual distinctions are never significant.

damikesc said...

...or stop trying to smother people who don't agree with you and force them to do what you want.

Again, the inevitable backlash is going to be unbelievably ugly and I have difficulty empathizing.

rhhardin said...

Chip has a nice essay on this just today.

I'd argue that it has nothing to do with religion -- the religious argument is boring -- and ought to be a freedom of association issue.

Then it depends on a competitive market or not, before it hits anything the government has to attend to.

Fen said...

MadisonCaterwaul: If Pence really thinks blah blah should've more out-and-proudly signed it blah coward blah.

Yah, you keep floating this bs as if it means a damn thing.

Telling that its the best attack you can muster...

MayBee said...

The other thing we need to understand is how the public was primed to be outraged about this Indiana RFRA law on behalf of gay people.
Isn't it interesting? It isn't a jewish group (historically repressed) or a woman's group (access to birth control!) at the forefront of the backlash.
It's some group doing this for gay groups, and they had the story line and outrage machine well primed. It was ready to go the minute the law was signed, and the lack of understanding has permeated the news outlets' coverage of it.

MayBee said...

If Pence really thinks this is Good Law (I said this before), he should've more out-and-proudly signed it, rather than doing in a closet somewhere behind closed doors, with all the bill supporters. No one likes a coward for a politician, and it makes opponents circle like sharks.

How often do people really pay attention to signing ceremonies?
Especially in other peoples' states?

Ann Althouse said...

"I'd argue that it has nothing to do with religion -- the religious argument is boring -- and ought to be a freedom of association issue."

That water went under the bridge in the 60s.

MayBee said...

I cancelled my Angie's List membership. Not over this so much, but really because their visible protests over this law made me remember I don't really use or like their service.

Ann Althouse said...

Pence is an otherizer too. He all "Hoosiers are better than other people." Blecch.

rhhardin said...

That water went under the bridge in the 60s.

You haven't read Epstein.

MayBee said...

Hoosiers don't say "mouse". So they do have that going for them.

Alex said...

Why not stand up to homophobia? It is a righteous cause.

gadfly said...

First Ann points out that Indiana have done nothing that has not already been done by other states and Bill Clinton.- and then she makes Mike Pence a bad guy for saying something he didn't say about "otherizing" - whatever that really means.

Read carefully the quote below from Fort Wayne News-Sentinel writer Kevin Leininger:

"Now that those backward fools in Indiana have passed a law that could make it harder to buy wedding cakes just so bigots don't have to violate their fundamental religious beliefs, a lot of people who normally preen over their commitment to diversity and tolerance insist they're simply not going to tolerate anybody who doesn't think or act just like they do."

Indeed - discrimination in any form is obvious only in the eyes of the beholder.

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Link to the map doesn't work

John Henry

JRoberts said...

The state of Georgia is a considering a similar law right, but is not receiving the same media attention.

Maybe that's because nobody has mentioned Governor Nathan Deal as a potential 2016 presidential candidate.

Coincidence?

Bob Boyd said...

Let me get this straight...
We're going to drop economic sanctions against Iran where they hang people for being gay, but institute them against Indiana because someday somebody might not want to bake a cake?

MadisonMan said...

Re: Angie's List. I really don't see how that's a viable business model anymore. I am not a subscriber, but is there really information on there that is not available, free, elsewhere?

My gut says No.

Ann Althouse said...

"You haven't read Epstein."

He's on a pleasure cruise downstream.

mccullough said...

Whatever happened to the Hoosier Daddy chant?

traditionalguy said...

That won't pass in Georgia. Too many gays are politically active in Atlanta. Why piss them off for no reason.

Steve M. Galbraith said...

We try to find some middle ground, compromise when rights conflict.

But on this issue - at this point (and it's fascinating how quickly it's become the CW of elites) - there can be no middle ground for the opponents of these laws.

If people with deeply held religious beliefs must be forced to violate those beliefs than the religious beliefs of unpopular religions are equally in danger.

Liberals better be careful what they wish for. Today they want to go after "conservative Christians" but tomorrow it will be some favorite group they want to protect. But those protections will be gone.

Alex said...

Yelp has all the same businesses and with user reviews.

Ann Althouse said...

Map link fixed.

Birches said...

The comments on VC are hilarious. I didn't know so many deranged people were as qualified as Jonathan Adler to comment on a law's likely effects. The best part is when he argues that textual interpretations of laws is always better than divining what lawmakers intended, but the commentors are still throwing out the old Obamacare "Established by the State" phrase as if he was being hypocritical or something.

Idiots. The lot of them.

I wouldn't have a public signing ceremony either. How is a public signing ceremony going to help optics when the Coastal Media Elite is doing everything in their power to distort and lie about what this law actually is?

rhhardin said...

He's on a pleasure cruise downstream.

He's pretty smart about what will work going forward and what had better be fixed.

An unusual legal education trajectory led him to figure out why these principles came up rather than those principles, and he sees where SCOTUS mistakes happen.

I've given his explanation of freedom of association and civil rights a few times now.

In a noncompetitive market, you have a civil rights issue to settle. In a competitive market, you don't. The market completely fixes the problem for you.

Birches said...

Freedom from the oppression of religion is written into the Constitution.

Yes, that is an actual VC comment.

MayBee said...

But on this issue - at this point (and it's fascinating how quickly it's become the CW of elites) - there can be no middle ground for the opponents of these law

Exactly. That's what I want to know more about- who comes out with these preprogrammed CW packages, and why do they take such hold with the media?

It makes it very very difficult to actually discuss things like adults, which we deserve.

David said...

Widespread ignorance and prejudice as a threat to freedom. Nothing new. They don't want to understand, except in the case pf the leaders, who understand perfectly well.

MayBee said...

MadMan- when I contacted Angie's List to cancel, I told them I simply don't use their service enough to pay for it. The guy told me he understood that, but Angie's List has so many other benefits- discount movie tickets for example.

So that's how they are trying to keep customers. By being a home repair/AARP/groupon hybrid.

rhhardin said...

The alternative to Epstein is an supreme court perceived as illegitimate, which is not going to work.

The left doesn't care, it just wants to win.

The masses however see that things are going wrong, and you lose them.

Unknown said...

"Why not stand up to homophobia? It is a righteous cause."

Not sure what homophobia actually means anymore. I am disgusted by the concept of anal intercourse, I am disquieted that homosexuals should be allowed to raise children. I am not afraid of it. I don't actually care if you indulge in the behavior as long as (1) it doesn't hurt anybody and (2) I don't actually have to observe or otherwise acknowledge it (any more than I have take note of heterosexual behavior -- I'm not a fan of voyeurism or porn). There's quite a bit of literature on the intersection of homosexuality and various diseases indicating the practice is not good for society as a whole. Suicide rates for young adults who claim to be homosexual in societies where it is supposed to be accepted suggest unresolved internal conflict. There's a lot of literature indicating that homosexual parenting is bad for a lot of kids. There's competing literature, but an awful lot of it seems to start with the answer, which somewhat disqualifies it IMHO.

And not sure what you mean by "righteous." If you are using some kind of religious or moral standard for the word, it's rather an odd usage. If you mean right according to some standard of morals, where does the morality originate? It's either ultimately some immutable 0external authority, or arbitrary. If it's arbitrary, who are you to tell me what's righteous? Of course you could be using the the term sort of literally (possessing of "rights") in which case it's kind of funny, if not actually "out right" ironic.

Smilin' Jack said...

Understand that if we're going to relieve religious believers of the burdens of generally applicable laws, courts are going to have to avoid preferring one religion over another. You can't accommodate the religions you agree with or think are sweet and fuzzy and say no to the ones who seem mean or ugly.

Free Charles Manson!

Steve M. Galbraith said...

What are we talking about in this matter: four people? Ten?

We have some rare circumstances where a florist or baker doesn't want to participate in an activity that he or she thinks violates his or her religious beliefs.

Those beliefs may be stupid - I think they are - but they must be honored.

The hysteria over this is not surprising but it is revealing about how the left thinks.

I understand the importance of symbolism - this is what this is about isn't it? - but at some point reason has to win out over emotion?

Brando said...

So the people who thought it was real "groovy" to protect the rights of peyote smoking natives because religion is all spiritual and getting in touch with nature never imagined religion could also be used to justify things that run against their latte-set worldview? Welcome to the land of unintended consequences.

Just like all the griping about "outside money" ruining politics--they probably wouldn't like it so much when a bunch of swampy activists suddenly aren't allowed to put up a commercial railing against global warming denying congressmen.

Just once, think through the consequences of your actions, you hacks! Or maybe admit that even if a law allows something you don't like, it might be outweighed by it allowing things that are important to you. Now you can smoke religious peyote all day long and all "the man" can do it stand there and groove on it.

MayBee said...

Judging how this is getting covered on CNN, I'm guessing Indiana is being targeted because groups want a law passed to make LGBT a legally protected group.

Simon said...

Because they don't know what a RFRA law is, and they haven't read this one. Other than a handful of dishonest academics and reporters (Epps is a good example), the response is completely untethered from any knowledge of what the statute says. The critics are reacting to the press' reactions to the statute.

rhhardin said...

The point of provoking backlash is to make it clear that any backlash will be crushed.

MayBee said...

Those beliefs may be stupid - I think they are - but they must be honored.

I agree.

I'm certain the NYT would decline to profile my wedding in its wedding announcements section. Do I live my life upset by this bit of socioeconomic discrimination? Or do I buck up and live my life and find some newspaper willing to announce my pending nuptials?

MayBee said...

Right, Simon. So the question becomes why is the press having the reaction it is having, and why is it so monolithic?

Matt Sablan said...

On those protections being gone, it made me think of A Man for All Seasons.

William Roper: So, now you give the Devil the benefit of law!

Sir Thomas More: Yes! What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil?

William Roper: Yes, I'd cut down every law in England to do that!

Sir Thomas More: Oh? And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned 'round on you, where would you hide, Roper, the laws all being flat? This country is planted thick with laws, from coast to coast, Man's laws, not God's! And if you cut them down, and you're just the man to do it, do you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow then? Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake!

Simon said...

Birches said...
"The comments on VC are hilarious. I didn't know so many deranged people were as qualified as Jonathan Adler to comment on a law's likely effects. The best part is when he argues that textual interpretations of laws is always better than divining what lawmakers intended, but the commentors are still throwing out the old Obamacare "Established by the State" phrase as if he was being hypocritical or something."

I must say that I used to read VC daily, and often read the comments, which often included serious academics and practitioners. Since they allowed themselves to be swallowed by the WaPo, I rarely read the blog, and never read a combox that, inevitably, is now populated by WaPo people not the serious crowd that VC used to get. It was a mistake, in my own opinion, for them to be hoovered up.

Patheos is the same thing. I would never consent to be assimilated and the blogs that do go downhill fast. I understand the incentives, but I think that those incentives are better served by aggregations into group blogs like Lawfare and, ironically, VC as-was.

rhhardin said...

Levinas, on Sein und Zeit and Heidegger's Nazi sympathies

The diabolical is endowed with intelligence and enters where it will. To reject it, it is first necessary to refute it. Intellectual effort is needed to recognize it. Who can boast of having done so? Say what you will, the diabolical gives food for thought.

chillblaine said...

Hate RFRA. Backdoor to sharia. The free exercise clause should be enough.

Simon said...

MayBee said...
"Right, Simon. So the question becomes why is the press having the reaction it is having, and why is it so monolithic?"

I don't know, I'm no expert, but I tend to think that it may have something to do with the press being composed almost without exception of liberal Democrats.

I wish that conservatives would build some serious news infrastructure of our own, but instead we take MSNBC as our model and think it appropriate to build, you know, Breitbart, the WaTi, Fox, and we pretend that it's credible when it's actually a laughing-stock. Where's the conservative answer to the Times? Is it the Journal? Is that all?

Birches said...

Where's the conservative answer to the Times? Is it the Journal? Is that all?

The Federalist seems to be making waves. And it shies away from a lot of the clickbait that the Breitbarts and the Washington Times thrives on. Mollie Hemingway should be cloned.

MaxedOutMama said...

That would be too rational and would require thinking and even some reading and research. We don't like to do things like that.

What are you, a Vulcan????? You're messing up our twenty-day hate.

Steve M. Galbraith said...

"Hate RFRA. Backdoor to sharia. The free exercise clause should be enough."

These laws apply to the rights of individuals or private people NOT the power of the state. It has nothing to do with government laws.

This law - something quite similar - has been in effect for more than 20 years.

Where has it led to state theocracies?



Steve M. Galbraith said...

"It has nothing to do with government laws."

Government power that is.



Bob Boyd said...

Could a Native American shaman be forced to conduct a peyote ceremony for a gay wedding?

Birches said...

So the question becomes why is the press having the reaction it is having, and why is it so monolithic?"

The journalists of today have not been educated properly and actually lack critical thinking skills. They're special snowflakes and all that

Birches said...

Exhibit A: Ezra Klein

lemondog said...

rhhardin said...
That water went under the bridge in the 60s.

You haven't read Epstein.


Link?

jimbino said...

We atheists suffer sever discrimination in Amerika. There are almost no atheist chaplains in the military, hospitals or prisons.

SCOTUS is made up of 6 Roman Catholics and 3 Jews. There are no "outed" atheists in congress.

One must assume, however, that any scientist would be an atheist, since over 90% are. Fortunately, it is we who have the bomb.

Freder Frederson said...

Gay Power thugs wanting to intimidate.

If this statement weren't so pathetic and insulting, it would be hilarious.

If you are intimidated by "Gay Power thugs" how on earth did you survive in the military, especially as a drill sergeant? (I assume your moniker reflects reality)

YoungHegelian said...

From the Publisher's Weekly revieew of Epp's book at the Amazon link:

On the other hand, Frohnmayer had fought against a religious cult, that of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, though that case involved the use of germ warfare.

I'm thinking, how cool would that be, if somewhere in the Church Fathers or the Scholastics, we can find a compelling theological argument why the Catholic Church needs germ warfare capabilities & get that covered by the RFRA.

"How many divisions does the Pope have?" Well, we've got weaponized anthrax now, motherfuckers!

Well, it was just a thought. Carry on.

Freder Frederson said...

Those beliefs may be stupid - I think they are - but they must be honored.

Why exactly should stupid beliefs be honored. Just because someone believes the earth is 6000 years old doesn't mean that stupid belief should be taught in the schools. In fact it should be ridiculed by right-thinking people.

Sigivald said...

I've seen a lot of blather about it.

Seems like a lot of people are in favor of liberty until it might lead to any outcome they dislike.

Then it Must Be Stopped Because It's The New Jim Crow.

(And, mind you, this from an atheist who likes gay people just fine.)

Lewis Wetzel said...

I believe that the people who pay for schools should decide what should be taught in them, Freder Frederson. Nothing wrong-thinking about that.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

George Stephanopoulos on This Week yesterday interviewing Mark Pence was simply superb. He just kept asking the one question: If you are a baker or florist or photographer, will this law get you off the hook if you refuse to assist same-sex marriages? And Pence just would not answer the question. He kept circling back to how this RFRA was just like the one President Clinton signed in 1993, and how then-State Sen. Obama voted for the Illinois version, &c. Anything but answering the yes-or-no question. By the end, Pence's every reply began with "Look, George," but he wouldn't budge, and the segment ran out of time before George could break him down. A virtuoso performance, of a sort.

YoungHegelian said...

@Freder,

Just because someone believes that the labor theory of value describes economic reality and that class consciousness determines human history doesn't mean that stupid belief should be taught in the schools. In fact it should be ridiculed by right-thinking people.

I fixed that for you.

MayBee said...

MDT- that's excellent?

Lewis Wetzel said...

It would be a very odd thing if the state could force a practicing Christian to facilitate a same sex marriage, but could not prevent a Jewish couple from having their male child circumsised.

jmill said...

Correct me if I'm wrong but neither Indiana not the United States has a general statue prohibiting discrimination against homosexuals as they do for sex or race. So why is the RFRA in one state such and issue.

damikesc said...

We atheists suffer sever discrimination in Amerika. There are almost no atheist chaplains in the military, hospitals or prisons.

Given the definition of chaplain, there should be no athetist chaplains.

Why exactly should stupid beliefs be honored.

Freder comes out against global warming!

...or learns that who defines what is "stupid" is key.

Take your pick.

Brando said...

"Why exactly should stupid beliefs be honored. Just because someone believes the earth is 6000 years old doesn't mean that stupid belief should be taught in the schools. In fact it should be ridiculed by right-thinking people."

It's not the stupid BELIEFS that should be "honored" but rather the right to those beliefs that should be honored. After all, people disagree over what beliefs are stupid, and these attitudes change over time. Would you want to live in a world where you have no right to your own beliefs because others decided they're stupid?

My belief is that opponents of gay marriage aren't evil or stupid, but they are just plain wrong. And they're entitled to their wrong beliefs, so long as they don't infringe on others' rights (and where rights begin and end is of course the real issue here, not whose beliefs are stupid) just as I should be entitled to my own.

lemondog said...

Hehehe.... Lose Angie's List but gain a church.....

Paperwork filed with Indiana Secretary of State for First Church of Cannabis

The filing comes as RTV6 political insider Abdul-Hakim Shabazz said on his blog, IndyPolitics.org , that the Colorado-based Green Faith Ministries believed it could expand its ministry into Indiana .

Green Faith Ministries uses marijuana as part of its sacrament, Shabazz reported.

Marijuana is currently illegal in Indiana for both medical and recreational use.

Jim said...

If only there were a way to find out if businesses were LGBTQ welcoming. Perhaps someone should start an internet company that recommends local businesses. Maybe call it Angie's LGBTQ list. People could write reviews like, "they gave me the stinkeye at Bob's Bakery when I tried to order a Halloween cake. I think they are Evangelicals who don't celebrate Trick or Treat. I wouldn't shop there." As usual, there is a freemarket solution to almost every problem. It just doesn't allow for the self-righteousness.

Balfegor said...

I think the situation Adler describes -- the wedding planner refusing to assist in planning a gay wedding -- is somewhat different from the usual RFRA situation, which is active religious expression (long hair, drugs, etc.) that is being penalised or prohibited by a neutral statute or regulation. In the case of the wedding planner (or, say, a bakery, to take a completely random example), the individual liberty interest is, if anything, even stronger -- to avoid coerced speech.

Honestly, I don't even think this should be limited to religious scenarios. A private business shouldn't be required to print Communist or National Socialist flyers; a wedding planner should be allowed to refuse to plan a wedding for furries; even a privately operated conference space should be permitted to refuse to host Klan or Black Power meetings. Private businesses shouldn't be required to facilitate speech with which they disagree. There's no fairness doctrine in life.

Now, this isn't a Constitutional issue -- I don't disagree with the caselaw here. I'd hesitate even to characterise it as a matter of the right of the business owner to be free from coerced speech. Rather, it's an accommodation for a diverse society. People won't agree on everything, and giving someone the right to compel someone else to facilitate speech with which they disagree just encourages friction and ill-feeling.

lemondog said...

Forces need to gather to legalize pot. That should also resolve any peyote issue.

Steve M. Galbraith said...

"Why exactly should stupid beliefs be honored."

I used honored to mean allowed or permitted.

We're not talking about schools. We are talking about the right of people to hold sincere religious beliefs and not be forced to violate them in a substantial or significant way.

This is not about an owner of a diner not serving gay people because he doesn't like them. These RFRAs do not allow that. There must be a substantial burden that the person has to carry in order to claim a religious exemption.

Even then he must prove in court that his beliefs are being violated. He simply cannot make a claim.

This is much ado about very little to nothing.

jmill said...

Correct me if I'm wrong but neither Indiana not the United States has a general statue prohibiting discrimination against homosexuals as they do for sex or race. So why is the RFRA in one state such an issue.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

MayBee,

Judging how this is getting covered on CNN, I'm guessing Indiana is being targeted because groups want a law passed to make LGBT a legally protected group.

Oh, that was covered in the Stephanopoulos interview too. Gays aren't a protected class in Indiana, and here at least Pence was forthright in saying he didn't think they should be.

Immediately following Pence, incidentally, was a commentator whose name I've forgotten, but who trotted out the old familiar line about how people shouldn't be discriminated against based on "who they love."

Now, that line is just bunk. "Who they love" might be twelve years old. "Who they love" might be a sister or a mother. Even if (as my husband said) you include the proviso "who they love and who loves them back," how many of Glenn Reynolds' teacher-statutory-rape cases would be covered?

I understand that "who they love" is (as my husband also said) a "term of art," but it's waaaaay past its sell-by date. Kill it already.

Bob Boyd said...

So are these businesses who are so eager to punish Indiana also refusing their products and services to Muslim countries that outlaw homosexuality?
Or would that be intolerant?

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Balfegor,

Well stated, way better than I could've. That's exactly it. Volokh said it repeatedly: When you are asked to do something positive, like ice a cake or assemble flowers or pose wedding photos, we are beyond public accommodations and on to creative work, and you cannot be coerced to do work for a cause you despise.

The whole thing seems petty to me, because there are any number of Hoosiers eager to do all of these things, and the campaign against this law seems intended to root out and expose the few who aren't.

Has anyone actually dug out the Illinois bill that Obama voted for? Of course, that was in his "against gay marriage" phase, before and after he was for it, so we may expect some later modification of views ...

Deirdre Mundy said...

How can a business discriminate based on 'who you love?' How can a court determine whether you love the person in earnest? Or that an employer believes you love that person?

Part of the problem with making sexuality a protected class is that:

1. It may change over the lifetime. While some people are clearly 'gay for life', others seem to change depending on the relationship. So how do you protect those people in employment law?

If someone is a protected class, say, a woman over 45, you need a much higher standard of proof to lay them off or fire them for cause. Even in an at-will employment state like IN, protected classes require more documentation.

So, say you have Jim, who has dated men, but is currently married to a woman.

If Jim is fired, can he claim to belong to a protected class? How can his employer know that he's a member of a protected class? How can HR people TELL if someone is gay without delving into personal details that aren't permitted in job interviews in the first place?

Making sexual orientation a protected class is asking for HR nightmares.

Bill said...

The White House joined the fray by noting, without prompting and with implied support, that some entities are considering not doing business with Indiana.
That's a sickening position by the White House that would even make James Buchanan blanch.

Steve M. Galbraith said...

"So are these businesses who are so eager to punish Indiana also refusing their products and services to Muslim countries that outlaw homosexuality?"

Yeah, good point.

If we condemn Islam's treatment of gays - killing them, imprisoning them - we're racist or not acting humble because, y'know, the Inquisition and the Crusades.

But a person who doesn't want to be involved with a gay wedding?

Why that's unacceptable bigotry!!!

Must be careful condemning the murder of gay people; but not baking them a cake? That will not stand.

Very odd world.

Simon said...

Freder Frederson said...
"Why exactly should stupid beliefs be honored[?]"

I think that's your problem right there. Neatly-encapsulated. When you realize just how profoundly stupid that comment is, you'll be making progress.

TCR James said...

If we could just alter the Federal and State RFRA's to protect only minorities, it'd be more to everybody's liking. Laws aren't supposed to protect the majority culture...

MayBee said...

If Jim is fired, can he claim to belong to a protected class? How can his employer know that he's a member of a protected class? How can HR people TELL if someone is gay without delving into personal details that aren't permitted in job interviews in the first place?

Making sexual orientation a protected class is asking for HR nightmares.


That's exactly what happens with all the protected classes.
You fire anybody for any reason, if they are a member of one of the protected classes I guarantee they will sue or threaten to sue for discrimination. Even if they know exactly why they were fired.

The desired endgame is probably to get something like they have in some European countries, where it is almost impossible to fire anybody.
They just have to create the "right" to a job one demographic chunk at a time.

MayBee said...

"So are these businesses who are so eager to punish Indiana also refusing their products and services to Muslim countries that outlaw homosexuality?"

I would guess, if anything, they would consider banning investments in Israel.

Freder Frederson said...

If Jim is fired, can he claim to belong to a protected class? How can his employer know that he's a member of a protected class?

Merely belonging to a protected class is not enough, the employment decision must be based on him belonging to the protected class. i.e., he was fired because his employer thought he was gay.

Brando said...

"If Jim is fired, can he claim to belong to a protected class? How can his employer know that he's a member of a protected class? How can HR people TELL if someone is gay without delving into personal details that aren't permitted in job interviews in the first place?"

I think it would come out more like disability-based discrimination. Plaintiff has to show defendant knew of the orientation/disability, suffered adverse action, etc.

It would also be like saying "I was fired because I'm Jewish!" To make that case, you'd have to show that the employer knew you were Jewish.

Freder Frederson said...

The desired endgame is probably to get something like they have in some European countries, where it is almost impossible to fire anybody.

This is simply not true. People get laid off and fired all the time in Europe. Your confusion stems from the fact that most countries in Europe no longer adhere to at will employment, an archaic and inherently unfair tradition.

MayBee said...

Freder- I am not confused

Freder Frederson said...

When you are asked to do something positive, like ice a cake or assemble flowers or pose wedding photos, we are beyond public accommodations and on to creative work, and you cannot be coerced to do work for a cause you despise.

What a meaningless description. Does that mean someone must sell you a toaster as a wedding gift but can refuse to gift wrap it because it is a wedding gift for a gay couple?

What a ridiculous concept.

Freder Frederson said...

Freder- I am not confused

If you are claiming it is "almost impossible" to fire someone in Europe, you are.

YoungHegelian said...

@Deirdre Mundy

Making sexual orientation a protected class is asking for HR nightmares.

Well, I think any man who can't say with a tone of profound sincerity Girlfriend, were you really planning to go out wearing that! should be prima facie considered not covered by LGBT legal protections.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Freder,

Your confusion stems from the fact that most countries in Europe no longer adhere to at will employment, an archaic and inherently unfair tradition.

You think? It seems to me that at-will employment is about as fair as it gets. You can be fired at any time; you can quit at any time. What's not to like?

Freder Frederson said...

I used honored to mean allowed or permitted.

Well then you used "honored" incorrectly.

MayBee said...

Not everywhere in Europe.

In some places in Europe, it is merely very difficult to fire people.

Freder Frederson said...

You can be fired at any time; you can quit at any time. What's not to like?

The fact that you can be fired for reasons unrelated to the job. That is what's not to like.

Sebastian said...

"Indiana has focused attention on RFRA laws, but it's stupid to focus on Indiana."

No, it isn't. Serves a useful political purpose. As media attention shows.

"These laws are all over the place. Understand them. Understand how they apply in many different scenarios and how they are limited by courts in their application. Understand that if we're going to relieve religious believers of the burdens of generally applicable laws, courts are going to have to avoid preferring one religion over another."

It isn't about understanding, professor. It's about winning. By any means necessary.

"You can't accommodate the religions you agree with or think are sweet and fuzzy and say no to the ones who seem mean or ugly. We need to figure that out."

Yes, you can. And what do you mean, "we"? "We" Progs figured it out long ago. Get with the program.

"And get after Congress. Congress started it. Unless you're Hoosier, leave Indiana alone. Stop otherizing Indiana."

No. Indiana is an easier target. This is Alinsky applied to states.

"As I predicted, Epps is otherizing Indiana."

Of course he is. Liberal law prof. Nuff said. Good thing you didn't predict an honest argument. Spares us the faux surprise.

Otherizing works. Get over it.

MayBee said...

Yeah, I think Freder is confirming my point. A lot of this is to get more Europeanish job protections in place.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Freder,

What a meaningless description. Does that mean someone must sell you a toaster as a wedding gift but can refuse to gift wrap it because it is a wedding gift for a gay couple?

Yes, possibly. (See, I can be a lot more forthright than Gov. Pence.)

If you're incapable of gift-wrapping, yourself, you might consider contacting one of the overwhelming majority of Hoosiers who don't mind gift-wrapping for gay couples. Or even, y'know, not mentioning that the toaster is a gift for my dear homosexual friends Dave and Bruce, who are getting married next Sunday.

I repeat: This is an astonishingly petty issue blown up to national proportions because, hey, the previous 18 states with RFRA clones didn't stick, so why not Indiana?

Brando said...

"Your confusion stems from the fact that most countries in Europe no longer adhere to at will employment, an archaic and inherently unfair tradition."

First, no one should be "entitled" to a job. A job is a great thing, and policywise it is desirable for more people to get and keep jobs to which they're qualified, but the idea that "I work for you and therefore you are required to keep me on as long as I want this job" is far less fair than "Sally pays John to work for her, and will continue to do so as long as he wants to work for her and she wants to pay him to do so".

Second, anything that makes it harder to fire someone (or more burdensome to hire or retain them) will be factored into the cost of hiring them. The higher that cost is, the more reluctant to hire the employer will be. This is how you create a lousy job market.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Freder,

The fact that you can be fired for reasons unrelated to the job. That is what's not to like.

And you can quit for reasons unrelated to the job, too. You could just decide not to come in one day and tell your boss to stuff it.

Steve M. Galbraith said...

"Well then you used "honored" incorrectly"

I was using it in the legal sense since we are talking about, for the most, laws.

As in: to honor a law or honor a right.

A courteous respect.

Oy, you've repeatedly shown yourself to be quite silly.

I'll honor your right to be silly.

Freder Frederson said...

Or even, y'know, not mentioning that the toaster is a gift for my dear homosexual friends Dave and Bruce, who are getting married next Sunday.

Oh, so now you are coming out for suppressing free speech to avoid offending the sensibilities of bigoted salesclerks.

What happened to honoring stupid beliefs? I guess in your world it is okay to say you are against gay marriage but not for it.

MayBee said...

Oh, so now you are coming out for suppressing free speech to avoid offending the sensibilities of bigoted salesclerks

This reminds me of all the tee-heeing about not saying certain things to your server or cook, lest you get a little extra something in your salad.

MayBee said...

A union's free speech = withholding work from an employer and even blocking access to the employer's business.

How is this so different from a baker withholding access to his work product?

Big Mike said...

Democrats gotta hate. If Freder didn't have Indiana to hate, he'd go find someone else.

Theresa Klein said...

Silly Ms. Althouse. This isn't about gay marriage or religious freedom. It's about signalling one's correctness on the issue of gay marriage, and one's hatred for those vile religious conservatives.

MadisonMan said...

I'm happy to see Indiana Legislators are working to clarify the language.

Now, you *could* ask why they passed a law that's apparently ambiguous enough to *need* clarification, but that's why we have courts I guess.

MadisonMan said...

really, Indiana Republicans could take a lesson from Wisconsin Republicans on how to get things done.

Brando said...

"The fact that you can be fired for reasons unrelated to the job. That is what's not to like."

So you think because someone wants the employer's money, the employer should be required to keep paying them? By your theory, the kid down the block who would like to mow your lawn for $100 has a right to that job, and you would need some "legitimate" reason to not pay him to do it.

I Callahan said...

Otherizing works. Get over it.

Exactly. Otherwise, it wouldn't be tried over and over again.

Anonymous said...

MDT: The whole thing seems petty to me...

Doesn't it just, though? And the level of hysteria and unreason in the commentary on this legislation is remarkable, even by current sterling standards of hysteria and unreason.

I can't shake a suspicion these days that the whole world is trolling me. Every Officially Oppressed Group seems to be competing now for some secret "Stereotype Embodiment" grand prize, to be awarded for displaying all of the negative traits, in their most fulsome form, that ever a Bigot(tm) has attributed to their group.

Brando said...

"It's about signalling one's correctness on the issue of gay marriage, and one's hatred for those vile religious conservatives."

That's exactly what this is about, as with most of today's big political controversies over petty things (from "Racetogether" to the "Chick Fil-A" incident). Fire up the good and decent against the "others" who have abhorrent and strange beliefs.

In real world practice, I imagine there might be a handful of business owners who will actually turn down gay customers due to their religious beliefs--and that the most this will lead to is the minor inconvenience of finding another vendor who isn't too good for their money. I suppose if there were widespread "no hiring gays" policies across major industries in Indiana, it would be a different situation.

Brando said...

"I can't shake a suspicion these days that the whole world is trolling me. Every Officially Oppressed Group seems to be competing now for some secret "Stereotype Embodiment" grand prize, to be awarded for displaying all of the negative traits, in their most fulsome form, that ever a Bigot(tm) has attributed to their group."

I blame social media and the internet--it enhances the echo chambers, and the ability to cluster into groups you agree with to find small outrages everywhere, and prove your bona fides by railing against it (admittedly, that's what we're doing right here!). It says something that this sort of thing gets widespread coverage while gay people are actually being executed in some parts of the world.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Freder,

Oh, so now you are coming out for suppressing free speech to avoid offending the sensibilities of bigoted salesclerks.

Not at all. You can say whatever you like, and the "bigoted salesclerk" can take it however s/he likes. I'm just saying that, in the ordinary run of things, when you say you want a toaster gift-wrapped, you don't go out of your way to mention that it's for a gay wedding. Or a straight wedding. Or a bar mitzvah. Or your grandmother's 100th birthday.

I am curious, btw, about how the salesclerk is "bigoted," but our President, ca. 2009, was not.

Fen said...

The fact that you can be fired for reasons unrelated to the job. That is what's not to like.

If you can be run out of business for not cheerleading gay weddings, you can be run out of business for not condemning gay weddings.

Welcome to the new culture war. You are 3% of the population. Don't whine when we play your cards back on you.

mishu said...

Sebastian said...
3/30/15, 1:51 PM


Not sure if this is parody or if you are being an open and honest dick about what you want. Either way, salut.

Fen said...

the response is completely untethered from any knowledge of what the statute says. The critics are reacting to the press' reactions to the statute

"Hands up don't shoot!"

And the same idiots are falling for it all over again.

damikesc said...

What a meaningless description. Does that mean someone must sell you a toaster as a wedding gift but can refuse to gift wrap it because it is a wedding gift for a gay couple?

Did the person HAND CRAFT the toaster?

Should a painter be required by law to paint a portrait? Should a designer of wedding gowns be forced to design and make the gown for something they oppose?

What you advocate is slavery. That because you WANT somebody's service, they are obligated to provide it.

Now, you *could* ask why they passed a law that's apparently ambiguous enough to *need* clarification, but that's why we have courts I guess.

They could go Connecticuit's route and ban ALL infringements on religious liberty.

Watching their governor bemoan Indiana's far more modest law was amusing.

Oh, so now you are coming out for suppressing free speech to avoid offending the sensibilities of bigoted salesclerks.

No. Just saying the salersclerk should have the right to decide to not deal with you.

Free speech, last I checked, has repurcussions.

Fen said...

Freder: What a meaningless description.

SCOTUS says you are an idiot. You cannot compel someone to promote through their (artistic) speech something that violates their moral conscience.

But the gay activists have become Nazis over gay weddings - its not enough to tolerate it, you have to cheerlead for it or lose your business and be jailed.

I'm getting tired of this BS. Maybe ISIS has the right idea? I'm not sure, but I know one thing: when they come for you, I'm not standing in their way.

Fucking Nazis.

damikesc said...

If you can be run out of business for not cheerleading gay weddings, you can be run out of business for not condemning gay weddings.

Even better: If you donate money to a group we don't like, you can be hounded out of your job, even if there is zero evidence of you doing a bad job or treating anybody poorly.

damikesc said...

SCOTUS says you are an idiot. You cannot compel someone to promote through their (artistic) speech something that violates their moral conscience.

But the gay activists have become Nazis over gay weddings - its not enough to tolerate it, you have to cheerlead for it or lose your business and be jailed.

I'm getting tired of this BS. Maybe ISIS has the right idea? I'm not sure, but I know one thing: when they come for you, I'm not standing in their way.


I wouldn't go this far...but the backlash is going to be exceptionally ugly. And the SJW class has been warned repeatedly.

Darleen said...

I am curious, btw, about how the salesclerk is "bigoted," but our President, ca. 2009, was not.

All of The One's deeply held convictions have an expiration date ... some more quickly than others.

Look at how much he LOVES him the Israel nowadays.

Unknown said...

http://advanceindiana.blogspot.com/2015/03/freedom-indiana-now-admits-indiana-law.html

After vilifying the Indiana General Assembly and Gov. Mike Pence for supposedly enacting a form of RFRA that discriminates against gays, Freedom Indiana finally owns up to the fact that Indiana's civil rights law never protected gays from discrimination. In fact, not even the federal Civil Rights Act protects gays from discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations. Even when Democrats controlled the White House and both houses of Congress, there was no serious push made to expand federal civil rights protection to persons based on sexual orientation.

In a press release issued this morning, Freedom Indiana is now seeking the legislative solution it didn't seek before it cast RFRA as representing something it did not:

Jason said...

Alex:

Why not stand up to homophobia? It is a righteous cause.

No. LIBERTY is a righteous cause. Including the liberty of people we find distasteful potentially doing things we find, as a majority distasteful.

Liberty applies to them and protects them as well, or it is meaningless.

LIBERTY is a righteous cause.

Yours is just a special interest.

Darleen said...

When the "kill the Christians" advocates step up to fine and/or jail the gay owners of a t-shirt shop that refuse to print "Leviticus 18:22" on shirts for the Westboro Church, then I know they are, at least, principled in their anti-First amendment pronouncements.

But for now, it has not a thing to do with "gay rights". Just more Left fascism.

Brando said...

"What you advocate is slavery. That because you WANT somebody's service, they are obligated to provide it."

My theory is that the Left isn't really against slavery per se, but only American slavery because most of the slaves were black. The concept of personal freedom and the ability to benefit from your work isn't really that sacred to them.

Darleen said...

The concept of personal freedom and the ability to benefit from your work isn't really that sacred to them

YOU DIDN'T BUILD THAT!

mikesixes said...

RFRAs, if I understand them correctly, allow exceptions for people with religious objections unless there's a compelling government interest in forcing them to comply. It seems to me that instead of a religious exemption for laws which don't further a compelling government interest, any law that doesn't serve such an interest should be nullified. After all, what makes laws law is the threat of force against those who don't comply. If there is no compelling reason for a law to exist, they shouldn't be threatening force against anybody, religious or not.

Brando said...

"RFRAs, if I understand them correctly, allow exceptions for people with religious objections unless there's a compelling government interest in forcing them to comply."

I don't know about the state versions, but the federal RFRA basically states that the government cannot burden the practice of the religion unless (a) there's a compelling government interest being served by the burden AND (b) there's no less burdensome alternative that would accomplish the interest.

So in our cake decorator example, if the government interest is not to prevent anti-gay discrimination, even though the decorator may have a religious belief that prevents him from serving gays, the government may have no less burdensome means of preventing nondiscrimination than by requiring the decorator to serve gays.

So if this is what Indiana's RFRA states as well, then I'm not sure what any of this has to do with our cake decorator. Indiana not only doesn't have a gay nondiscrimination law, but if it did it's not certain that the cake decorator would be able to use the RFRA to defeat it.

Anonymous said...

Brando: I blame social media and the internet--it enhances the echo chambers, and the ability to cluster into groups you agree with to find small outrages everywhere, and prove your bona fides by railing against it...

I came up with a theory and a prediction about this yesterday over our Sunday bottle of wine. As I noted above, the commentary seemed crazier than ever - and this just in the local Indiana papers I clicked to, which were wall-to-wall vindictive hysteria. And that was from what appeared to be the straight, college-liberal or middle-aged wet-Christian crowd. Usually for these things there's some push-back - a sane, knowledgeable adult here, a realtalker there. But it was nothin' but nuts, at least when I was perusing. All hysterical vaporings about Teh Haters, all the time.

I can see this sort of thing eventually throwing a monkey-wrench into the the moral-preening and status-jockeying preferences of ambitious SWPLs. Right now they're probably starting to suspect that maybe they've been too successful in "changing attitudes". What's with all those dreadful rubes just pretty much going along with whatever nutty "new frontier in civil rights" we come up with, all wagging tails and floppy ears and ingratiating roll-overs? We even got all those ghastly nicey-nice flyover Christians to hop on the tranny-rights train, while hardly lifting our wagging-finger. They must be desperate to have us kool kids like them and accept them (the losers).

'Twas ever thus, no? Cool kid stuff used to take years to get from the coasts to the wastes of Uncoolistan, giving SWPLdom plenty of time to adopt new, distinguishing beliefs at a leisurely pace.

What will they have to get into to maintain comfortable sneering-distance from the rubes if the rubes just keep rolling over? God help us. God help us all.

...(admittedly, that's what we're doing right here!).

Hey, it's different when we do it! Because I can't even.

Alex said...

Ann Althouse said...
"I'd argue that it has nothing to do with religion -- the religious argument is boring -- and ought to be a freedom of association issue."

That water went under the bridge in the 60s.


Exactly, no use arguing "freedom of association". It's just dog whistle for racism and homophobia.

Alex said...

Darleen said...
When the "kill the Christians" advocates step up to fine and/or jail the gay owners of a t-shirt shop that refuse to print "Leviticus 18:22" on shirts for the Westboro Church, then I know they are, at least, principled in their anti-First amendment pronouncements.

But for now, it has not a thing to do with "gay rights". Just more Left fascism.


You must be new here. This isn't a right wing wacko blog. Please apply your bigotry elsewhere.

Fen said...

Alex said: [snip a whole bunch of racist bigoted ignorance]

After arguing with morons like Alex for several days, I've discovered they don't care about the truth behind the bill. They are immune to reason. They want a narrative that allows them to call christians bigots, same way they ignored all the facts in the Micheal Brown case so they could call cops racist.

This is about establishing a false narrative they can turn into distorted bumpersticker slogans and FB memes. Their walls will soon be adorned with "Look at me! I'm a righteous dude!" self-promotions.

I think their motivation is narcissism - they need to feel good about themselves. They need to be able to look themselves in the mirror and say "Sure, I made a pass at the babysitter, but I defended gays from those bigots, so I can't be a total douche, right?"

Liberalism is a mental disorder.

Alex said...

Fen... the entire country is against you and your hideous ideology. Just give it up already.

Darleen said...

Please apply your bigotry elsewhere.

Hi Alex,

Didn't answer my question, I see. How surprising.

I guess when it comes to 1A, some people are more equal than others.

bless your heart

Alex said...

Darleen, the 1A doesn't apply on a blog. I am free to boycott you and encourage others to do so as well. We don't need your hate.

Darleen said...

Fen... the entire country is against you

EVERYONE knows!
EXPERTS say!

Why yes, always a convincing way to say "Shut up."

tool

Michael said...

God, but this is tiresome stuff, isn't it? Someone might get the genius idea to discover what businesses are discriminating against LGBTs and replicate that business but cater to LGBTs. Crazy as it might sound there are multiple cake decorators in most towns and bergs, even in Indiana.

And Tim Cook, bless his heart, is in a snit as well as other business guys who are threatening to do this or that (but not give up their seats for the Final Four) to punish Indiana, all of Indiana. But Tim will sell the shit out of his Apple products to any buyer in the Middle East who wishes to take time from removing the clits from his various wives to visit one of the Apple shops or websites. And why not? It would be rather judgmental to do otherwise, no?

Bruce Hayden said...

You must be new here. This isn't a right wing wacko blog. Please apply your bigotry elsewhere.

I didn't read it as bigotry, but rather as pointing out hypocrisy. As I understood it, the point was that a lot of those screaming about the IN RFRA being homophobic, etc., are probably unlikely to put anti-gay bible passages on T-shits if they ran T-shirt stores. Which is to say that the assertion is that the tolerance goes one way - supporting gays, and not the other.

Darleen said...

We don't need your hate.

Oh honey, can you get more cliched?

Amusing. Please do trot out some more inane Leftist shutuppery!

404 Page Not Found said...

I woke up this morning and discovered that I am actually a black woman in a white man's body. Do I now qualify for Affirmative Action programs?

Bruce Hayden said...

God, but this is tiresome stuff, isn't it? Someone might get the genius idea to discover what businesses are discriminating against LGBTs and replicate that business but cater to LGBTs. Crazy as it might sound there are multiple cake decorators in most towns and bergs, even in Indiana.

The problem there, if I may be so bold, is that there just aren't that many gays out there, and catering to gays, versus catering to those with religious problems with homosexual behavior, is not that likely to be successful. This isn't like Fox News, where the unmet demand was half the market, but rather, probably a couple percent for gays, and a couple more for their families. And, maybe a couple percent for die hard progressives.

Alex said...

I think Tim Cook should put his money where his mouth is and shutter Apple stores in Indiana until they repeal this hate law.

JAL said...

@damikesc Even better: If you donate money to a group we don't like, you can be hounded out of your job, even if there is zero evidence of you doing a bad job or treating anybody poorly.

That reminds me of something ... mmm ... mm .. um

Mozilla! Eureka!

damikesc said...

I think Tim Cook should put his money where his mouth is and shutter Apple stores in Indiana until they repeal this hate law.

Hmm, is it legal to discriminate against gays in Indiana?

Yes. Was the case BEFORE this bill. No law against discrimination in public accomodations.

Note: there isn't one federally, either.

Bruce Hayden said...

Fen... the entire country is against you and your hideous ideology. Just give it up already.

What Alex was trying to do used to work. Elite opinion providers, our betters (or so they thought) are completely on board for pro-gay acceptance. And, if they were all you listened to, you might believe, as Alex may, that that is the prevailing sentiment of the country. But, more and more many in his country have discovered that those elite opinion makers, MSM news people, etc. are progressive hacks, and reflect little more than the sentiments of the small bubbles they live in.

So, a couple years ago, Alex could have gotten away with what he was trying there, trying to shame someone for pro-religious, anti-gay sentiments, asserting that all right thinking people agree with him, and if you don't, then you are a Neanderthal. But, most of us here any more see through his arguments to the reality that he wasn't making a logical argument, but rather, was arguing through ad hominem and false consensus.

JAL said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
JAL said...

I heard a well known lawyer speak on RFRA not too long ago. They hate it. Absolutely hate it. Said RFRAs will be used to discriminate against blacks and gays, especially in places like Mississippi.

Really?

Also heard that one of the backery cases has resulted in the bakers being fine $150,000 because they would not bake a gay wedding cake. Is that true?

What the h*ll is the matter with that segment of the gay community?

And if a cake was baked and decorated, dollars to donuts there will be a complaint that the cake was substandard (because the bakers didn't like having to do it, natch). Couple that with a coerced wedding planner complaint and one can have a wedding Freeeee!

Taking bets.

I'm with rh -- there's a target market ... go for it!! Make a bunch of $$!

Darleen said...

Funny how even when a campaign obtains a license to play a song, if the musical artist objects, it is the campaign's fault.

But I guess anti-GOP musicians are allowed to not support a message they disagree with, but not a photographer or wedding planner.

CUZ HATE!!

YoungHegelian said...

If little Timmy Cook has a problem with people who have problems with gays, I think he should let all those people around the world know exactly what he thinks about them & their bigotry.

But, please, give me at least a day or two's warning so I can buy some futures in Samsung.

Much obliged.

Fen said...

Alex: the entire country is against you

Is that why the PEOPLE of Indiana, through their elected representatives, passed an RFRA?

Is that why the PEOPLE of the the United States, through their US House of Representative and the US Senate, passed a federal RFRA

Is that why the PEOPLE of the 20 other states have, through their representatives, passed RFRAs?

Yah, the entire country is getting sick and tired of your gay Nazi bullshit.



Heir Alex: and your hideous ideology.

You mean the 1st Amendment? The one that says you can't make me cheerlead for issues that violate my moral conscience? And that you can't run me out of business and jail me for not clapping loud enough?

Fuck you, Nazi. You are 3%. You wanted to play hardball with innocent people's lives. This is hardball.

Bruce Hayden said...

I think Tim Cook should put his money where his mouth is and shutter Apple stores in Indiana until they repeal this hate law.

Yeh, and his chances of keeping his job would go down the drain at the same time. What you don't get is that there are a lot more people in this country who are religious than are gay, or homophiles. Telling them all that they are not entitled to buy Apple products is likely to get tens of millions of people essentially boycotting the company's products.

I think that we are seeing more and more tribalism, taking sides on the Blue Team or the Red Team, and this would be essentially saying that Apple product ownership equates to Blue Team membership.

YoungHegelian said...

@BruceH,

this would be essentially saying that Apple product ownership equates to Blue Team membership.

Actually, if one excludes iPhones & iPads, and considers only Apple PC products, it kinda does come with a Blue Team membership.

Bruce Hayden said...

To get an idea of what I was talking about, this article talks of boycotting ABC/Disney for a pro-gay TV series: Conservatives Blast ABC for Pilot Sitcom Based on Life of Gay Sex Columnist.

Bruce Hayden said...


Actually, if one excludes iPhones & iPads, and considers only Apple PC products, it kinda does come with a Blue Team membership.

Well, maybe. But the guy who sent me a link to that article I just posted here is a Mac-head, upgrading his Air Book Mac (or whatever it is) yearly, etc. But, I think that you are correct there.

YoungHegelian said...

@Bruce,

I'd boycott giving money to Dan Savage on general principle. There are lots of decent gay people in the world, but DS is not one of them. If Disney sincerely considered working with Savage, I'd say that not only are they living in a bubble, but that the CO2 level in that bubble is starting to inflict irreparable brain damage.

damikesc said...

Hell, Cook, just live up to your claims.

You have stores in China, which has a total ban on gay marriage and doesn't show gay movies.

Close ALL of them.

You opened stores in Arabia. Those need to close, too.

Illinois has an RFRA. Shut down stores there.

CT has a MORE stringent RFRA. Shut down stores there.

Be consistent.

To get an idea of what I was talking about, this article talks of boycotting ABC/Disney for a pro-gay TV series: Conservatives Blast ABC for Pilot Sitcom Based on Life of Gay Sex Columnist.

Anything involving noted hate monger Dan Savage should be protested. Fuck him.

I've enjoyed One Big Happy so far, so it's not a hatred of gays.

Dan Savage just needs to die in a fire.

Titus said...

This is a tale of two Americas.

Elite, educated, creative economies, who incomes keep rising.

And red state flyover states.

I have traveled all over Indiana and it is one of the grossest I have ever traveled....Evansville, South Bend, Indy, the entire north state. Driving through northern Indiana from Ohio to Illinois is one of the most depressing and depressed places I have ever been-everything seems to be out of business....except fast food restaurants.

Business will speak and Indiana will hurt.

garage mahal said...

How does a complete moron like Pence get elected in the first place? He's a stone cold idiot.

Kirk Parker said...

Awesome!

"You haven't read Epstein."

He's on a pleasure cruise downstream.

Althouse! Come for the incisive legal and cultural analysis, stay for the comedy gold repartee!!!






Birches,

"Yes, that is an actual VC comment. "

Say what you will about the old days, but the numbskull contingent among the commenters certainly grew with their move to the WaPo.




Freder,

Do you seriously not know of this other meaning of "honored"? The one that SMGalbraith was using, is extremely common in talking about this sort of thing; e.g. State A "honoring" State B's concealed-carry permits.

Kirk Parker said...

Oh, and regarding at-will employment, Freder: you can quit for reasons unrelated to the job.

Seems fabulously reciprocal to me.

Birches said...

But I guess anti-GOP musicians are allowed to not support a message they disagree with, but not a photographer or wedding planner.

Zing!

Diogenes of Sinope said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Diogenes of Sinope said...

Gays have won the culture war, they have gotten 99 percent of everything they wanted. Now they are doing the equivalent of going across the battlefield and shooting the wounded.

Next re-education camps.

Titus said...

Nine of the largest corporations in Indiana have requested the gov to stop this law.

It's over-money talks-sorry religionists.

We weren't powerful when these laws took place on the fed and state level.

Those days are over-it's 2014-we are visible and have money.

69% of 18-29 republicans support gay marriage-what it the party going to do? Continue down this path? Yes, the old, dead soon base love it, but really. It's a losing policy in the longer term.

Darleen said...

69% of 18-29 republicans support gay marriage

SO THE F**K what? This has not a goddamned thing to do with same-sex marriage, polygamous marriage or any other "Science Settled so SHUT UP" piece of sh*t you're peddling.

Either the 1A means what it has always meant or it doesn't.

I HAVE PHOTOGRAPHED A SAME-SEX WEDDING. And I still support to the max the right of another photographer to bow out of doing an event they disagree with.

You will NOT see me photograph a polygamous wedding nor one where the couple are racist supremacists of any stripe.

You neo-fascists can go to hell.

Fen said...

So pathetic to see Tight Ass come out of his usual filth to concern troll.

The Gay Nazi's must be desperate.

People are getting sick of their shit.

Chas S. Clifton said...

It all started with Employment Division v. Smith in the early 1990s.

And an influential 1994 documentary, The Peyote Road was made in support of what became the first, federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act, later tossed by the Supreme Court.

Unknown said...

Indiana has a civil rights law which doesn't cover LBGTAWQRASLPXYZs , the state does not have a public accomodations law. So the screaming about the new religious freedom act is all nonsense. It is already legal to refuse to do business with gays, trannies and other sexually confused folk, and has been for a long long time. Yet no such discrimination has occurred.

chillblaine said...

He's on a pleasure cruise downstream.

Pursuing Colonel Kurtz.

MayBee said...

I really find it deplorable the NCAA got involved in this in the midst of March Madness. Does everything have to be tainted these days?

MayBee said...

I really find it deplorable the NCAA got involved in this in the midst of March Madness. Does everything have to be tainted these days?

YoungHegelian said...

@Titus,

69% of 18-29 republicans support gay marriage-what it the party going to do?

Yeah, now, they do. But just wait until folks feel the full brunt of the Stalinist gays & their straight supporters.

In Denmark, the parliament passed a law where the churches MUST perform gay marriages. When that lined is crossed here, folks will be hunting gays with dogs & scoped AR-15s.

Titus, forget that stupid, lefty-feel good "We are the wave of the future, and can't be stopped". Bullshit! You're 2.5% of the population, and look who's doing the breeding --- the goddamn religious conservatives. Everywhere around the world! Do you think that when it comes time to man the barricades against Billy Ray Bob & his AR-15 with 15,000 rounds of ammo, that people who worry about "micro-agressions" are going to take a slug for you & your buddies? Do you look at the modern Left and think "physical valor"?

Get 80% of what you want, and then settle. Call off the gay dogs of war, or it may quickly escalate into something much, much uglier. Do not fuck with their churches or do so at your own peril.

MadisonMan said...

the parliament passed a law where the churches MUST perform gay marriages.

Aren't you glad you live in a Country where the Church and State are separate!?

YoungHegelian said...

@MadisonMan,

Aren't you glad you live in a Country where the Church and State are separate!?

Yes, but many and varied are the ways of government sponsored oppression, and I'm sure that many an insane lefty is sitting in an endowed chair at a major university is working on that problem right now.

If you think I'm kidding about that "insane" & "endowed chair" then you need to acquaint yourself with what comes out of Womyn's Studies Deptartments now.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

Titus, forget that stupid, lefty-feel good "We are the wave of the future, and can't be stopped". Bullshit! You're 2.5% of the population, and look who's doing the breeding --- the goddamn religious conservatives. Everywhere around the world! Do you think that when it comes time to man the barricades against Billy Ray Bob & his AR-15 with 15,000 rounds of ammo, that people who worry about "micro-agressions" are going to take a slug for you & your buddies? Do you look at the modern Left and think "physical valor"?

Lol. Wars can be fought with robots and joysticks these days YH and you don't need more than 2.5% of the population to be in the excluded group when 85%+ sympathize with their feeling righteously pissed off when political skunks and ignorant spirit corporations make a gratuitous brouhaha about excluding them.

Simon said...

damikesc said...
"Did the person HAND CRAFT the toaster?"

"That word is racist. I don't like it." #BSG #6

YoungHegelian said...

@R&B,

when 85%+ sympathize with their feeling righteously pissed off

85% in your dreams, R&B. Ask the question carefully enough, and you'll get the numbers you want. But, honestly, world-wide, you know those numbers are bogus.

No, I think it's more like this.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

Very good. I can't argue with The Onion. ;-)

The fact is, it's all a lost cause. Rock of St. Peter, Inc., and Conservative Christian Spirituality, Inc., are economic actors that Apple can eat and swallow whole.

They already lost the social argument (whether it's just >50% or 85% isn't the point), and on general political grounds, seem to be losing increasing numbers of court cases and ballot initiatives.

Politically, socially and economically, the religious justification of anti-gay exclusion/discrimination is generally losing, and on its way to lost. It can keep up this pansy-ass 1st amendment tantrum, but then, witch-burning Puritans were also just practicing their religion, as well.

They want to discriminate, economically. Well, so can Apple and the vast majority of the country's most powerful companies. Waddaya gonna do 'bout it?

Come join reality. I'm sympathetic to a company's right to exclude, also. But doing this openly, this odiously, and with this much whining for support from Indiana's Biggest of Big Governments… it just shows how desperate the cause of Religious Exclusion Inc. has become. Time to see a lost cause for what it is.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

But, honestly, world-wide,..

Interesting goalpost shifting. I didn't realize these laws appealed to by Indiana were international in nature.

YoungHegelian said...

@R&B,

The liberals don't breed. Anywhere. That's nowhere in the world.

The religious troglodytes do. Demographics are destiny. And all of Apple's money & you & Titus' "Happy-Happy, Joy-Joy" can't change that fact.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

That Onion article was 14 years old, so I guess the cause it laments was only set back by around 36 years. ;-)

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

The liberals don't breed. Anywhere. That's nowhere in the world.

Not true, but nice cockroach analogy. Being less rabbit-like does not make for extinction.

The religious troglodytes do. Demographics are destiny. And all of Apple's money & you & Titus' "Happy-Happy, Joy-Joy" can't change that fact.

It's been noticed that genes do not create religious institutions or social norms. America, in all its, as you would put it, "non-progress", is unrecognizable from 100 years ago. It's also not going back to 1915. No can do.

Again, not sure why you keep internationalizing what Indiana, America's up to. But conservative Antonin Scalia wouldn't go for it. In any case, it sounds like a lot of conflation. Maybe getting this abstract is your self-consolation for realizing that this specific issue is increasingly DOA, no matter how many babies the Scott Stapps and Jimmy Swaggerts of the world want to have.

Todd Roberson said...

This will all seem a little trivial when Iran has the bomb.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

YH seems to be exercising the religious conservative "nuclear" option. It's like, if America's religious conservatives don't get their way, they might join with ISIS, he warns. Demography demands it.

Jason said...

The fact is, it's all a lost cause. Rock of St. Peter, Inc., and Conservative Christian Spirituality, Inc., are economic actors that Apple can eat and swallow whole.

"That's cute." --The Holy Roman Catholic Church

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

Well, who knows, Jason? After a couple world wars, that corporation's gotten very rich. But do they actually have a product or service to rival that of an innovative technology company? I doubt it. I guess that's why they encourage babies, as YH mentions. Nothing to encourage brand loyalty like impoverishment and no other options. Wafers are free. iPods cost money.

Todd Roberson said...

No (not sure who YH Is) ... What I meant is there is some heavy shit going down across the world that will likely impact the U.S. in some way and we're spending a lot time and political capital dealing with trivial things.

All of this continued writing back and forth, protesting, pontificating, passing needless laws, blah blah blah all takes a shitload of time; we Americans only have the time to do this because the world is willing to lend our government 25% of its collective GDP at 1% interest for the foreseeable future.

How long can that continue?

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

If religious conservatives like, as do the poor generally, having babies, then that will be a great way for ISIS and "Christendom" to have that war they're so itching to have. More fresh bodies to throw upon each other as cannon fodder! Wars of Civilizations require fresh bodies! Fresh bodies of brain-dead zombies!

The ones left standing will be the same enlightened bunch left over after Christendom's sects killed each other in mass numbers four hundred years ago. We sure appreciate all the bleeding off!

You guys go and be happy to repeat the favor between yourselves and The Levant's finest. We'll greet the survivors upon your return.

Todd Roberson said...

Trouble is, Mr. Balls, in the war you reference, the next time,

1. It might not be "over there" (wherever it is to which your are referring)
2. The combatants might not be able to distinguish between "Christiandom" and the "we" to whom you refer in your riposte

Particularly if our attention is diverted by such trivial crap as is debated in this entire post and comments.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lewis Wetzel said...

R & B, your 10:29 is incredibly dumb. This, for example, is false: "The ones left standing will be the same enlightened bunch left over after Christendom's sects killed each other in mass numbers four hundred years ago."
You don't believe that the Enlightenment was a result of Christians killing one another, do you? Virtually every European was a Christian 400 years ago. Newton filled reams of paper with his bizarre religious beliefs. Blaise Pascal was a devout Roman Catholic. Tycho Brahe believed the Earth was at the center of the universe because the Bible said so. Kepler was a devout Lutheran who only gave up the priesthood for mathematics because the money was better. Copernicus was a devout Catholic priest. Leeuwenhoek was a Calvinist.
Your self-congratulation is unwarranted. At least you have demonstrated that non-religious people are irrational as well as ignorant.

Darleen said...

R&B, you obviously skipped Kipling in school.

"As it will be in the future, it was at the birth of Man
There are only four things certain since Social Progress began.
That the Dog returns to his Vomit and the Sow returns to her Mire,
And the burnt Fool's bandaged finger goes wabbling back to the Fire;

And that after this is accomplished, and the brave new world begins
When all men are paid for existing and no man must pay for his sins,
As surely as Water will wet us, as surely as Fire will burn,
The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return!"

The most dynamic religion of the 20th Century - Leftism - also was the cause of the most slaughter.

Keep it up, misanthrope, keep it up.

Fen said...

a great way for ISIS and "Christendom" to have that war they're so itching to have

Nah. Better to stand out of the way and let ISIS go at the rad fems and homosexual Nazis.

THEN we'll kill them and rebuild. We don't really need the coasties anyway - all they do is shriek hysterically and hamstring us.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

You don't believe that the Enlightenment was a result of Christians killing one another, do you?

It sure gave some good breathing room. ;-)

Hey. I'm just responding tongue-in-cheek to YH's mini-manifesto. But I forget how impervious you connies are to humor.

If only I could remember that, it would save a lot of arguments. Oh yeah, that's right. They forgot funny.

The plague also created great economic opportunity. Seeing as how the principle political achievement of the enlightenment was the establishment of America, I don't think I'm too far off of 1776 to say that the bloodletting of the 1600s didn't hurt. If nothing else, it gave the world the Peace of Westphalia. That was good.

Oh wait, I'm discussing history with biblical literalists again. My bad. Digressions only invite controversy.

Bleach Drinkers Curing Coronavirus Together said...

The most dynamic religion of the 20th Century - Leftism - also was the cause of the most slaughter.

Surely a one-party-state of your favorite right-wingers would be your definition of utopia. Feel free to impose at will, enlightened humanist!

Fen said...

R&B: Wars can be fought with robots and joysticks these days

You don't have the first clue. Not even the morons that insist they can win with air Strikes sans boots on the ground are as ignorant as you.

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