First, let’s get the news from the left-leaning U.S. News and World Report.
Hoping to harness the momentum generated by the Supreme Court’s landmark decision legalizing gay marriage, congressional Democrats on Thursday unveiled sweeping legislation that would extend additional rights to members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
The Equality Act – introduced by Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., in the upper chamber and Rep. David Cicilline, D-R.I., in the House – seeks to expand the 1964 Civil Rights Act’s protections against racial and sex-based discrimination to include discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
[…]The measure would prohibit discrimination against LGBT persons in categories ranging from employment and housing to education and jury service, and would broaden where discrimination would be illegal in a “public accommodation” to include everything from shopping centers and banks to travel agencies and funeral parlors.
According to the Human Rights Campaign, which advocates for greater LGBT rights, 31 states do not have laws that explicitly prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
The bill has 190 Democrats sponsors, and 0 Republican sponsors.
In a previous post, I explained that only states that have “non-discrimination” laws are able to punish Christian bakers, photographers, florists, etc. We are seeing the punishment of pro-marriage people in the states with these “non-discrimination” laws, e.g. – Oregon, New Mexico, Washington and so on. See the map below for more.
But this “Equality Act” bill would make all 50 states allow these kinds of punishments against people who disagree with same-sex marriage. The laws really are anti-religious-liberty laws, because they force you to agree with the gay agenda, or else face consequences. They force you to violate your conscience, just because you don’t agree with redefining marriage. If this law passes, it means that anyone who disagrees with gay marriage being the same as child-centered natural marriage would be a potential target for the federal government.
Marriage defender Ryan T. Anderson writes about a new law crafted by the Human Rights Campaign, which I’ll talk more about later.
Politico is reporting that the so-called “Equality Act” will be introduced today in Congress. The bill is the brainchild of the Human Rights Campaign—an influential, sophisticated and lavishly funded LGBT activist organization.
The “Equality Act” is a misnomer. The bill does not protect equality before the law, but unnecessarily and unjustly violates freedom by creating special privileges based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
This proposed legislation would add “sexual orientation and gender identity” (SOGI) to more or less every federal law that protects on the basis of race. It goes well beyond the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA)—which would have added SOGI only to employment law.
ENDA, which was first introduced in Congress in 1994, has been defeated each and every Congress. When it was first introduced, ENDA included only “sexual orientation,” but in 2007 “gender identity” was added to the bill. Thankfully, ENDA has never been made law.Nevertheless, having expanded the bill from including sexual orientation to also including gender identity, activists have also extended this misguided policy well beyond employment—to “credit, education, employment, federal funding, housing, jury service and public accommodations.” These SOGI laws must be resisted, as I explain in chapter six of my new book, “Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom.”
The Advocate reports that the “Equality Act’s” special privileges would apply to “public accommodations, public education, employment, housing, federal funding, jury service, legal protections, and credit. The bill would also clarify that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act cannot be used to defend” people who believe that marriage is the union of man and woman. That’s right: the bill says that religious freedom needs to take a back seat to special SOGI protections.
The Advocate also reports that the “Equality Act” would require that “sex-segregated facilities must admit individuals in accordance to their gender identity.” That’s right: the bill would require biological males who identify as women to be able to use women’s bathrooms and locker rooms.
[…]SOGI laws can have serious unintended consequences. They threaten small-business owners with liability for alleged “discrimination” based not on objective traits, but on subjective and unverifiable identities. They expand state interference in labor markets, potentially discouraging job creation. They endanger religious liberty and freedom of speech. And they mandate employment policies that, with regard to many workplace conditions, violate common sense.
The ENDA bill is a nightmare for religious liberty. If Anderson thinks this bill is worse, that should tell you something about how far the left is willing to go to compel celebration of same-sex marriage.
I want to remind my readers of two things about the Human Rights Campaign, which Anderson said is behind the bill.
First, as I blogged about earlier this week, their co-founder Terry Bean has been charged with child sexual buse.
Second, after a gay activist named Floyd Lee Corkins attacked the Family Research Council with guns, the Human Rights Campaign pronounced the Family Research Council a “hate group”. The FRC is a respected conservative, pro-life, pro-family think tank. Corkins was convicted for domestic terrorism for attacking them with guns. And the HRC called the FRC a “hate group”, even after the attack. And now they are supporting this “Equality Act” bill.
We ought to be concerned.
2 thoughts on “Democrats’ “Equality Act” will threaten religious liberty in all 50 states”
What’s troubling is that Ryan T. Anderson’s solution is a First Amendment Defense Act. It doesn’t make sense to me. If the feds won’t obey the Constitution as written now, how will this bill make it any different? (This law says that you must obey the law that you don’t follow right now, or else)
The feds have shown where their allegiance lies, and it’s not on upholding individual rights. They’ll enforce it the same way they enforce the immigration laws.
Conservatives have to reframe this as an issue of private property rights and fight accordingly. If they don’t, it’s going to be a losing battle.
Donal Graeme “called it” a month ago: