Monday, March 30, 2015

Indiana RFRA Q&A

An attorney over at the Federalst does a question and answer session on the recent religious freedom bill passed in Indiana. A few things he points out:
  • Nineteen other states and the federal government already had similar laws, known as Religious Freedom Restoration Act(s). The federal one signed by Bill Clinton in '93.
  • The words "gay", "lesbian", or "sexual orientation" don't appear in Indiana's, or any of the other RFRAs.
  • No RFRA has ever been used to deny service to LGBT types in restaurants or other public accommodations after 20 years.
Someone commenting the other day here mentioned the religious use of peyote, although I believe it was in sarcasm. The author addresses the peyote vs. federal issue, as well.

One thing he doesn't address is whether the states that had the lawsuits we've heard about (wedding cakes and photography) had RFRAs and how that played out, or might have with an RFRA, in the end.


At 3:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Haha! If you repeat that it's not discrimination over and over than it's not discrimination. Big Brother Fred says so. You may be a fool, but others can see right through the disingenuous talk regarding these laws.

At 4:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's misleading to cite that 19 other states have similar laws. No. No other state has written a law that is even remotely close to being as all-encompassing / broad / open-ended to include everything.

At 6:46 PM, Blogger Fred Mangels said...

Scott Shackford, over at Reason magazine, has some new comments on the Indiana law. Not quite sure what he's trying to say, but since it seems friendly to my position, here it is:

At 9:01 AM, Anonymous Liberal Man On Bike said...

Sweet, we've got another 24 hrs of Fred's attention on this.

Here's the NYT take.

At 9:38 AM, Anonymous Liberal Man On Bike said...

Regarding the 19 other states and the federal RFRA. (From the NYT editorial linked above)

A) "Besides Indiana, 19 states have adopted such laws, but the laws in the other states apply to disputes between individuals and the government; Indiana’s law also applies to disputes between private citizens."

B) That claim (Pense's the law "is not about discrimination,” but about “empowering people.”) is impossible to square with his refusal to consider a statewide law protecting gays and lesbians from discrimination (about a dozen Indiana cities, including most of the largest ones, already have such laws). On Sunday, Mr. Pence said he agreed that it would be helpful to “clarify” the law’s intent, even though it is already perfectly clear."

Again and again Fred we find out how little really distinguishes you from the Republicans. The Libertarian tag is much more popular to wear, especially when folks (and their money) like Arkley dominate the Republicans, but based your votes and your positions - especially when one would think you would have a broader understanding of principles like "freedom" (ie this case and free speech for Occupy as two examples) - you are toeing the party line.

We don't need two axises for political characterization - just one. Left and right. R & D.

At 10:17 AM, Anonymous Liberal Man On Bike said...

Questions from your link FM...

So RFRAs Don’t License Discrimination?

A: "No. RFRA is a shield, not a sword."

So, from a Libertarian's point of view. We are going to protect the religious of Indiana in law, but take measures not to protect the LGBT community?

Seems to me (not to mention a whole lot of ultra-liberals like Apple and the NCAA) a passive-aggressive license for discrimination.

Why Is Everyone So Mad about Indiana’s RFRA, Then?

"In truth, though, Indiana is merely catching-up to states that have had RFRAs for decades—like Illinois, for example, which got its RFRA with the help of a young state senator named Barack Obama. Unfortunately, Indiana is now caught in the cultural cross-fire."

NYT - nope you're wrong Federalists here is the reason we are so mad

"The tactic of using so-called religious freedom laws to justify and support anti-gay discrimination is relatively new. A decade ago, states could discriminate against gay couples openly by banning same-sex marriages, as dozens did. In recent years, with federal and state courts striking down those marriage bans as unconstitutional (Indiana’s was struck down in 2014), opponents of marriage equality have resorted to using other strategies."

But ahhh. All this is now (hopefully) moot. As of 20 minutes ago. Thank you Governor Pence. Finally a little sanity - despite the best efforts of freedom seekers like Fred and the Federalist.

"Facing a national uproar over a religious freedom law, Gov. Mike Pence of Indiana said Tuesday that he wanted the measure changed by week’s end, even as he stepped up a vigorous defense of the law, rejecting claims that it would allow business to deny services to gays and lesbians.

“I’ve come to the conclusion that it would be helpful to move legislation this week that makes it clear that this law does not give businesses the right to discriminate against anyone,” Mr. Pence, a Republican, said at a news conference in Indianapolis"

Guess another reason violence is probably necessary and justified?

At 10:32 AM, Blogger Fred Mangels said...

"Guess another reason violence is probably necessary and justified?

Yep. I don't see how such differences can be resolved peacefully.

At 10:50 AM, Anonymous Liberal Man On Bike said...

Differences such as the Equal Protection clause of Reconstruction's 14th Amendment to the Constitution.

"The Equal Protection Clause requires each state to provide equal protection under the law to all people within its jurisdiction."

Hate to break it to you, but we've already fought that battle and we are not doing it again.

At 10:56 AM, Blogger Fred Mangels said...

You have no right to tell me who to associate with.

No, we probably won't end up in civil war as most of us are too complacent, or more likely, don't have the guts to stand up for our beliefs. I know I don't.

At 11:38 AM, Anonymous Liberal Man On Bike said...

The reason we won't have another civil war is we are too smart to resort to violence based solely on hatred. We've done that once and rejiggered the Constitution and as long as those 5 activist judges don't spend to much time up there, we'll be good for another 150 years.

I'm not telling you who to associate with, if you are a florist and you have to serve a wedding you don't approve of, you have the freedom to find a new line of work. I'd think twice about becoming a baker though.


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