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 AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious reason 
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Post AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious reason
This makes me sad to live in this state, though its honestly unsurprising:
Quote:
Arizona bill letting businesses deny service for religious reasons sparks heated debate
Published February 25, 2014
FoxNews.com

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer is facing pressure from both sides of a heated debate over religious rights, as she weighs whether to sign a bill that would legally protect businesses that deny services to customers for religious reasons.

The bill cleared the Arizona Legislature last week. Opponents are calling the measure “state-sanctioned discrimination” and raising such scenarios as gays being denied restaurant service or medical treatment when a business owner’s religion doesn’t condone homosexuality.

The bill updates existing Arizona law on the “exercise of religion” and protects businesses, corporations and people from lawsuits if they deny services based on a “sincere” religious belief.

Supporters argue the bill is about protecting religious freedom, not about allowing discrimination. And they frequently cite the case of a New Mexico photographer sued for refusing to take wedding pictures of a gay couple.

"This bill is about preventing discrimination against people who are clearly living out their faith,” said state GOP Sen. Steve Yarbrough, the bill sponsor.

Brewer, a Republican, has five days to sign or veto the bill once it gets to her desk but has yet to clearly indicate what she will do. Brewer suggested over the weekend that she supports a business's freedom of choice but remains unsure whether that has to be put into state law. She vetoed a similar bill proposed last year by Yarbrough.

Despite some support in the state Legislature, prominent Republicans have pressed the GOP governor for a veto, including Sen. John McCain. Five of seven Republican candidates for governor also have called for the bill to be vetoed or withdrawn. The latest is Frank Riggs, a former California congressman, who said it is a "solution in search of a problem."

According to the new bill, "A person whose religious exercise is burdened … may assert that violation as a claim or a defense in a judicial proceeding.”

In addition to the New Mexico case, a gay couple in Arizona was recently denied service over religious beliefs when the owner of a small bakery declined to bake the couple a wedding cake. “I respectfully declined due to my personal Biblical convictions as a born-again Christian,” the owner told an Arizona TV station. “I firmly believe that my convictions in the Bible are more important than money.”

Similar legislation has been introduced in Ohio, Mississippi, Idaho, South Dakota, Tennessee and Oklahoma. But Arizona's plan is the only one that has passed.

Supporters of the Arizona legislation also say it is needed to protect people from heavy-handed actions by courts and law enforcement.

The bill allows any business, church or person to cite the law as a defense in any action brought by the government or an individual. It also allows the business or person to seek an injunction once they show their actions are based on a sincere religious belief and the claim places a burden on the exercise of their religion.

Three state House Republicans opposed the bill but have not elaborated on their vote.

"I disagree with the bill," said GOP state Rep. Ethan Orr. "I think it's a bad bill."

Arizona's voters approved a ban on same-sex marriage as a state constitutional amendment in 2008. It's one of 29 states with such prohibitions, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Federal judges have recently struck down bans in Utah, Oklahoma and Virginia, but those decisions are under appeal.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/02 ... latestnews
What these peeps seem to not realize, is that in their desire to discriminate against the LGBT community, they're also legailizing discrimination against unwed parents, divorced individuals any other number of people that don't live their lives according to someone's 'religious beliefs'.

I have to wonder how supporters of legislation such as this would feel about laws not allowing women to drive or require them to wear a burqua....

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February 25th, 2014, 9:37 am
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
Arizona is the new Uganda!

As a big believer in the Bible, especially the old testament, I refuse to serve anyone under 500 years old. Also, don't think of entering my drive thru unless you are on a camel. Women may entered, but may not speak or be put into submission.

BTW - we've got the best and most unique meat in town inspired by 2 KINGS 6:29! Bring your boys and come hungry...

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February 25th, 2014, 9:58 am
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
Traditional marriage, per the Bible folks:
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February 25th, 2014, 11:35 am
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
um no. First of all, business all across the US can deny service for gays, but choose not to do so. This law is actually doing the exact opposite of what the article and you guys are implying. The bill is federal law in 1997 (almost unanimously), but when the SCOTUS ruled that it didn't apply to states, most states passed similar versions. BUT when the recent case came up with the photographer being sued because she didn't want to do gay weddings, the courts said the law didn't apply because the government wasn't a party in the case. This bill just makes the law like it always was supposed to read. It applies to all businesses, not the just the government.

This law actually narrows down what exactly would fall under religious freedom, not making it more widespread. That's already possible under the existing law. This more narrowly defines it, so it's just a symbolic gesture by the LGBT groups, because they have fewer rights now than they would if this passed, which just allows them to cry foul more often.

Right now, anyone can deny gays and just say it's religious freedom. The bill makes these stipulations now:

- Those covered by RFRA would include "any individual, association, partnership, corporation, church, religious assembly or institution or other business organization."
- A religious freedom violation can be asserted "regardless of whether the government is a party to the proceeding."
- The person asserting a religious freedom violation must show three things:
1. That the person's action or refusal to act is motivated by a religious belief.
2. That the person's religious belief is sincerely held.
3. That the state action substantially burdens the exercise of the person's religious beliefs.

The reaction to the bill is definitely one of those things that make me scratch my head. Narrowing is good... leaving it broad bad.


February 25th, 2014, 12:11 pm
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
njroar wrote:
um no. First of all, business all across the US can deny service for gays, but choose not to do so. This law is actually doing the exact opposite of what the article and you guys are implying. The bill is federal law in 1997 (almost unanimously), but when the SCOTUS ruled that it didn't apply to states, most states passed similar versions. BUT when the recent case came up with the photographer being sued because she didn't want to do gay weddings, the courts said the law didn't apply because the government wasn't a party in the case. This bill just makes the law like it always was supposed to read. It applies to all businesses, not the just the government.

This law actually narrows down what exactly would fall under religious freedom, not making it more widespread. That's already possible under the existing law. This more narrowly defines it, so it's just a symbolic gesture by the LGBT groups, because they have fewer rights now than they would if this passed, which just allows them to cry foul more often.

Right now, anyone can deny gays and just say it's religious freedom. The bill makes these stipulations now:

- Those covered by RFRA would include "any individual, association, partnership, corporation, church, religious assembly or institution or other business organization."
- A religious freedom violation can be asserted "regardless of whether the government is a party to the proceeding."
- The person asserting a religious freedom violation must show three things:
1. That the person's action or refusal to act is motivated by a religious belief.
2. That the person's religious belief is sincerely held.
3. That the state action substantially burdens the exercise of the person's religious beliefs.

The reaction to the bill is definitely one of those things that make me scratch my head. Narrowing is good... leaving it broad bad.
Interesting interpretation, everywhere I've seen...lawyers included, disagree with your assessment.

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February 25th, 2014, 12:24 pm
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
of course the lawyers would disagree... because what happens when the law is broad? More types of lawsuits can be brought up. It's not about results, it's about hours.

See, the wedding photographer case is a hot issue because it's not discrimination. She was willing to see them anywhere else, outside of a wedding setting. I've seen the comparisons of serving blacks in a restaurant and similar cases where they were discrimination and not a religious reason, so it's typical false analogies to make people feel a certain way.

The Obamacare issue, which will end up being decided in SCOTUS next year, is where this bill helps. A business can't just say they're religious like what was happening across the country initially, now they'll have to show those 3 factors. And not just one or two but all 3. The photographer could meet all 3... but could your business?


February 25th, 2014, 12:42 pm
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
http://www.businessweek.com/news/2014-0 ... rgets-gays

Business Week wrote:
American Airlines to Apple Oppose Arizona Bill Aimed at Gays

Companies from Apple Inc. (AAPL:US) to American Airlines Group Inc. (AAL:US) called on Arizona Governor Jan Brewer to veto a bill allowing businesses to refuse service on religious grounds, a measure that opponents say is meant to allow discrimination against gays.

The measure passed last week prompted tourists to cancel reservations and companies to say they would locate elsewhere if it became law. The bill threatens to reverse an economic recovery in a state among those hardest hit by the housing crash, opponents said, and to cement a reputation fostered by a 2010 anti-immigration law and a fight in the 1990s over celebrating the Martin Luther King holiday.

“There is genuine concern throughout the business community that this bill, if signed into law, would jeopardize all that has been accomplished so far,” Doug Parker, chief executive officer of Fort Worth, Texas-based American, wrote in a letter to Brewer yesterday. He said that it has the potential to reduce the desire of companies to relocate in the state and to repel convention business.

“Our economy thrives best when the doors of commerce are open to all,” he wrote.

US Airways Group Inc., a predecessor of American, traces its roots back to a company founded in Phoenix in 1981. The newly merged American, created in December, has promised to keep the city as a flight hub for three years.

Super Issue

Asked Feb. 22 whether she plans to sign the bill this week, Brewer said she needed to review it.

“I don’t have to make a decision until next Friday, so I’ve got plenty of time,” Brewer said at a National Governors Association meeting in Washington.

Brewer also declined to say whether next year’s Super Bowl could move from Arizona if the bill is in effect.

Hundreds protested it yesterday at the statehouse in Phoenix, the Arizona Republic reported.

Furor over the bill prompted several Republicans who voted for the measure to change their minds. In a letter yesterday to Brewer, Senators Adam Driggs, Bob Worsley and Steve Pierce urged the governor to veto it.

“While our sincere intent in voting for this bill was to create a shield for all citizens’ religious liberties, the bill has instead been mischaracterized by its opponents as a sword for religious intolerance,” the senators wrote. “These allegations are causing our state immeasurable harm.”

New Strategy

Arizona’s bill is similar to measures proposed in Georgia, Idaho, Maine, Mississippi and Kansas in response to the gay-marriage movement. Seventeen states, plus the District of Columbia, have legalized the practice.

“This is a new strategy,” said Eunice Rho, advocacy and policy counsel at the American Civil Liberties Union in New York. “As more states and the public are recognizing the freedom to marry, proponents of this legislation have been quite explicit in their desire to use freedom of religion to discriminate.”

Arizona business groups said publicity surrounding the bill’s quick trip through the Republican-controlled legislature prompted firms to reconsider their commitment to the state.

“This legislation will likely have profound negative effects on our business community for years to come,” wrote James Lundy, chairman of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council, and Barry Broome, its chief executive officer, in a Feb. 21 letter to Brewer.

“With major events approaching in the coming year, including Super Bowl XLIX, Arizona will be the center of the world’s stage,” they added. “This legislation has the potential of subjecting the Super Bowl, and major events surrounding it, to the threats of boycotts.”

Gay Linebacker

A National Football League spokesman said the organization was following the issue.

“Our policies emphasize tolerance and inclusiveness, and prohibit discrimination based on age, gender, race, religion, sexual orientation,” Brian McCarthy said in an e-mailed statement.

The NFL may hire its first openly homosexual player at its draft in April. Michael Sam, a University of Missouri linebacker who is preparing for the draft, said Feb. 10 that in August he told his teammates and coaches that he was gay.

There is money on the line in Arizona. A boycott sparked by an immigration crackdown in 2010 cost it $141 million in lost contracts and convention business, according to a report commissioned by the Center for American Progress, a Washington research group that says it was founded “to support the progressive movement.”

The Phoenix-based Arizona Lodging & Tourism Association received hundreds of calls and e-mails from visitors planning to travel to the state on business, or for leisure, said Debbie Johnson, chief executive officer of the 500-member group.

“People said they were either canceling trips or they would never visit again if the governor didn’t veto the bill,” said Johnson. “We’ve also gotten messages from our members saying, ’Hey, we got hit with numerous cancellations.’”

“You should address that issue to the Super Bowl,” she said.
Aaron Baer, a spokesman for the Center for Arizona Policy, which supports the measure, said it would allow residents to run their businesses in accordance with their faith.

“The attacks and the misinformation and outright lies have nothing to do with what Senate Bill 1062 is all about,” he said. “It brings Arizona in line with what a majority of courts and circuit courts have ruled.”

New Tactic

After the Republican-controlled state Senate approved the measure Feb. 21, businesses and gay rights groups lobbied the governor to veto it. Cupertino, California-based Apple, which is opening a facility this month in Mesa employing 700 people making a material used to strengthen iPhone screens, also asked Brewer to kill the bill.


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February 25th, 2014, 1:09 pm
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
Text of Bill wrote:

REFERENCE TITLE: exercise of religion; state action.

State of Arizona
Senate
Fifty-first Legislature
Second Regular Session
2014

SB 1062
Introduced by
Senators Yarbrough: Barto, Worsley

AN ACT

AMENDING SECTIONS 41-1493 AND 41-1493.01, ARIZONA REVISED STATUTES; RELATING
TO THE FREE EXERCISE OF RELIGION.

(TEXT OF BILL BEGINS ON NEXT PAGE)
SB 1062
- 1 -
1 Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Arizona:
2 Section 1. Section 41-1493, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to
3 read:
4 41-1493. Definitions
5 In this article, unless the context otherwise requires:
6 1. "Demonstrates" means meets the burdens of going forward with the
7 evidence and of persuasion.
8 2. "Exercise of religion" means the PRACTICE OR OBSERVANCE OF
9 RELIGION, INCLUDING THE ability to act or refusal to act in a manner
10 substantially motivated by a religious belief, whether or not the exercise is
11 compulsory or central to a larger system of religious belief.


Wags - So it doesn't even have to be a real belief, it can be 'made up'. Interesting....

12 3. "Government" includes this state and any agency or political
13 subdivision of this state.
14 4. "Nonreligious assembly or institution" includes all membership
15 organizations, theaters, cultural centers, dance halls, fraternal orders,
16 amphitheaters and places of public assembly regardless of size that a
17 government or political subdivision allows to meet in a zoning district by
18 code or ordinance or by practice.
19 5. "Person" includes a religious assembly or institution ANY
20 INDIVIDUAL, ASSOCIATION, PARTNERSHIP, CORPORATION, CHURCH, RELIGIOUS ASSEMBLY
21 OR INSTITUTION, ESTATE, TRUST, FOUNDATION OR OTHER LEGAL ENTITY.
22 6. "Political subdivision" includes any county, city, including a
23 charter city, town, school district, municipal corporation or special
24 district, any board, commission or agency of a county, city, including a
25 charter city, town, school district, municipal corporation or special
26 district or any other local public agency.
27 7. "Religion-neutral zoning standards":
28 (a) Means numerically definable standards such as maximum occupancy
29 codes, height restrictions, setbacks, fire codes, parking space requirements,
30 sewer capacity limitations and traffic congestion limitations.
31 (b) Does not include:
32 (i) Synergy with uses that a government holds as more desirable.
33 (ii) The ability to raise tax revenues.
34 8. "Suitable alternate property" means a financially feasible property
35 considering the person's revenue sources and other financial obligations with
36 respect to the person's exercise of religion and with relation to spending
37 that is in the same zoning district or in a contiguous area that the person
38 finds acceptable for conducting the person's religious mission and that is
39 large enough to fully accommodate the current and projected seating capacity
40 requirements of the person in a manner that the person deems suitable for the
41 person's religious mission.
42 9. "Unreasonable burden" means that a person is prevented from using
43 the person's property in a manner that the person finds satisfactory to
44 fulfill the person's religious mission. SB 1062

- 2 -
1 Sec. 2. Section 41-1493.01, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to
2 read:
3 41-1493.01. Free exercise of religion protected; definition
4 A. Free exercise of religion is a fundamental right that applies in
5 this state even if laws, rules or other government actions are facially
6 neutral.
7 B. Except as provided in subsection C, government OF THIS SECTION,
8 STATE ACTION shall not substantially burden a person's exercise of religion
9 even if the burden results from a rule of general applicability.
10 C. Government STATE ACTION may substantially burden a person's
11 exercise of religion only if it THE OPPOSING PARTY demonstrates that
12 application of the burden to the person PERSON'S EXERCISE OF RELIGION IN THIS
13 PARTICULAR INSTANCE is both:
14 1. In furtherance of a compelling governmental interest.
15 2. The least restrictive means of furthering that compelling
16 governmental interest.
17 D. A person whose religious exercise is burdened in violation of this
18 section may assert that violation as a claim or defense in a judicial
19 proceeding, and obtain appropriate relief against a government REGARDLESS OF
20 WHETHER THE GOVERNMENT IS A PARTY TO THE PROCEEDING. THE PERSON ASSERTING
21 SUCH A CLAIM OR DEFENSE MAY OBTAIN APPROPRIATE RELIEF. A party who prevails
22 in any action to enforce this article against a government shall recover
23 attorney fees and costs.
24 E. In FOR THE PURPOSES OF this section, the term substantially burden
25 is intended solely to ensure that this article is not triggered by trivial,
26 technical or de minimis infractions.
27 F. FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, "STATE ACTION" MEANS ANY ACTION
28 BY THE GOVERNMENT OR THE IMPLEMENTATION OR APPLICATION OF ANY LAW, INCLUDING
29 STATE AND LOCAL LAWS, ORDINANCES, RULES, REGULATIONS AND POLICIES, WHETHER
30 STATUTORY OR OTHERWISE, AND WHETHER THE IMPLEMENTATION OR APPLICATION IS MADE
31 OR ATTEMPTED TO BE MADE BY THE GOVERNMENT OR NONGOVERNMENTAL PERSONS.

http://www.azleg.gov/legtext/51leg/2r/bills/sb1062p.pdf

Sorry, still reads like legalized discrimination.

As written it appears as though someone would have the legal right/ability to discriminate against anyone that doesn't follow their religious beliefs.

For example:
Interracial Marriage
Divorced
Different Religious beliefs
LGBT
Unwed parent/child out of wedlock

Let's also not forget this part of our beloved Constitution:
Quote:
Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion
It could be seen that this particular bill puts religion on a different level than the Constitution allows....

In the end, I hope the NFL takes away the Super Bowl, even if the bill isn't signed into law.

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February 25th, 2014, 1:11 pm
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
The federal government isn't states. The constitution says what the federal government can't do, not what the states can do. Hence why each state has its own constitution. And this isn't about establishing a religion, it's about recognizing what one's religion says and they believe.

And no, it's not discrimination. You have to prove the 3 guidelines... The wedding photographer could prove all 3. A bar could not. A church can deny holding weddings, yet still allow them to be members. That's not discrimination, it's holding to religious beliefs.

The language matters and taking bits and pieces without the whole in legalese is where you and everyone else make the mistake. It's no different than the death penalty debates that pop up all the time. Cruel and Unusual punishment means both must apply. If you have an unusual punishment but it isn't cruel, it's fine. If you have a cruel, but not unusual, it's fine. Only if it applies to both would it go against the language of the law. So trying to pick out things that go against one that cause an emotional reaction is meant to play on those sympathies, but it doesn't violate the letter of the law. Just like saying the constitution doesn't allow the establishment of religion means it can't respect existing religions. That part of the constitution is there because there were so many sects of protestants in the colonies that they wouldn't make one the official religion. It didn't say they wouldn't respect each of them. Every word counts. And I'm tired of people thinking that line makes it like religion doesn't matter or has never been important to government.


February 25th, 2014, 2:21 pm
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
njroar wrote:
The language matters and taking bits and pieces without the whole in legalese is where you and everyone else make the mistake.
The text I posted is the exact text of the bill. How is that taking 'bits and pieces'?

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February 25th, 2014, 2:38 pm
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
Because no where in that bill does it say it is establishing a religion. Respecting religious beliefs, where again, you took the wording to mean "made-up" when it says it doesn't have to be part of the central religion, is where you're thinking this is discrimination.

Quote:
8 2. "Exercise of religion" means the PRACTICE OR OBSERVANCE OF
9 RELIGION, INCLUDING THE ability to act or refusal to act in a manner
10 substantially motivated by a religious belief, whether or not the exercise is
11 compulsory or central to a larger system of religious belief.


Quote:
Wags - So it doesn't even have to be a real belief, it can be 'made up'. Interesting....


Those words don't mean made-up. It's a bill about religious freedom. Meaning that even if your religion says homosexuality is wrong, you have the ability to act, or refusal to act on your belief. Imagine that. A law that says, you don't have to follow everyone else, because your belief is yours. So your church can't sue you, just as someone that's gay can't sue you if you make a choice based on a religious belief. But you need to prove that the belief is true and you have to prove how it harms you if you were to act on it. Meaning, how is a restaurant hurt by serving by pork? Muslims can't sue because it's on the menu because they could just not order the pork. And the photographer, who could be viewed by others as supporting gay marriage by serving as a photographer would have to prove that claim. Not just state it.

Not doing something or participating in something because of a belief isn't discrimination and those that keep pushing that message are disingenuous. A restaurant could never get away with not serving gays because that would be discrimination, and under this bill it wouldn't be permitted. The arguments for forcing a church to hold homosexual marriages, or forcing someone to do a service they don't want to do... that's the discrimination. That's lacking the respect for people's religious beliefs. That's the bigotry in this discussion. But the photographer was labeled a bigot. Not for being willing to take their photographs at anytime or any place as long as it wasn't a marriage, but because she didn't believe in gay marriage. And suing her was because of that belief. Not because she was discriminating against them, but because she didn't believe in that aspect of it.

Quote:
Interracial Marriage
Divorced
Different Religious beliefs
LGBT
Unwed parent/child out of wedlock


Interracial marriage - A racial issue would fall under completely different rules and it would never be allowed. They'd get blasted more for that than under a religious freedom clause...
Divorced - the only religion that doesn't believe in that is the Catholic Church and you wouldn't go to a Catholic Church to get a divorce. It's done in the courts. Name one case where this has ever come up?
Different Religious Beliefs - Again, name a case. Muslims don't tend to show up or have events at the local Church and likewise.
LGBT - again, they'd have to prove the burden.
Unwed - where has this ever been an issue? Name a case.

Quote:
As written it appears as though someone would have the legal right/ability to discriminate against anyone that doesn't follow their religious beliefs.


No. As written, they would need to prove it burdened them in order for them to not be able to do it. Just saying I'm not serving a homosexual doesn't cut it. A church losing it's congregation because of the belief.. yes a burden. Calling something discrimination doesn't make it discrimination.

No where in this bill does it say it gives people the free right to just not do things based on your beliefs. It says your beliefs are your rights and if it will harm that right, it is not mandatory for you to do it. Just because gay marriage is legal, doesn't mean if you're a church it's now compulsory for you to perform ceremonies. You have a choice. Wow.. choice is bad unless it's abortion? That's the only choice available in life now? Every other choice is now discrimination? Your choices are now protected. Simple as that. You don't have to like someone's choice, but they can make them if they have a valid reason for them.


February 25th, 2014, 5:30 pm
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
I have a question:

Does a business that serves the public have any rights to deny services without being labeled discriminatory? Does a business HAVE to identify a reason for denying services?

In the particular case you mentioned, what if the photographer said, "I'm sorry, I'll be unavailable that day." Does this constitute discrimination? I am thinking that the photographer opened this can of worms by stating something like, "I'm sorry but I can't photograph your wedding, because I don't support gay weddings." If that was the case, then the responsibility does fall upon the photographer for interjecting their personal beliefs into the situation. Had they chosen to refuse service because they were not going to be available, then the couple to be wed would probably have moved along to another photographer without incident.

Pablo and Wags, are you attacking Christian beliefs, because the use of the Old Testament doesn't really apply in this case, because Christianity didn't come into play as a RELIGION until the 3rd century A.D. The Old Testament is the portion of the Bible that tells the history of the Jewish people and the prophecies of the time to come. The New Testament is the life and times of Jesus, and the development of the Church, along with the prophecies regarding the End Times. So using OT references and laws to poke fun, and ridicule a religion isn't exactly accurate.

As a Blood Bought Born Again Believer, my first thought is I would have spent time in prayer about whether or not to accept the job. Second, if I did accept the job, I would have done the BEST JOB possible, and offered a blessing in Jesus Name. Because I would want to leave a favorable and loving impression of Christianity as compared to what you now have. As I've said for some time, Jesus came to RESTORE the relationship between God and Man, RELIGION is focused on rules and rituals that burden people, and ultimately chase them away. This is what American Christianity is doing today, by focusing on the Traditional Mentality (3rd century on) it is adhering to traditions that are burdening people and becoming unfavorable. However, RELATIONAL Christianity is focused on loving, serving, and doing as Jesus did, and this is ultimately much more difficult.

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February 25th, 2014, 9:00 pm
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
njroar wrote:
Respecting religious beliefs, where again, you took the wording to mean "made-up" when it says it doesn't have to be part of the central religion, is where you're thinking this is discrimination.
Quote:
8 2. "Exercise of religion" means the PRACTICE OR OBSERVANCE OF
9 RELIGION, INCLUDING THE ability to act or refusal to act in a manner
10 substantially motivated by a religious belief, whether or not the exercise is
11 compulsory or central to a larger system of religious belief.
Quote:
Wags - So it doesn't even have to be a real belief, it can be 'made up'. Interesting....
Those words don't mean made-up.
But they can mean made up. As you said earlier, lawyers love the work, and if you don't think that
Quote:
whether or not the exercise is
11 compulsory or central to a larger system of religious belief
is just waiting for abuse, you're kidding yourself.

There are no definitions for these terms in the legislation and I've seen no one provide their sourced legal definitions.
njroar wrote:
Quote:
Interracial Marriage
Divorced
Different Religious beliefs
LGBT
Unwed parent/child out of wedlock
Interracial marriage - A racial issue would fall under completely different rules and it would never be allowed. They'd get blasted more for that than under a religious freedom clause...
Divorced - the only religion that doesn't believe in that is the Catholic Church and you wouldn't go to a Catholic Church to get a divorce. It's done in the courts. Name one case where this has ever come up?
Different Religious Beliefs - Again, name a case. Muslims don't tend to show up or have events at the local Church and likewise.
LGBT - again, they'd have to prove the burden.
Unwed - where has this ever been an issue? Name a case.
There are all mentioned in the Bible as being sin/evil/wrong/etc and therefore against Religious Beliefs.

In case you missed it from above, here are some Biblical definitions for marriage:
TheRealWags wrote:
Traditional marriage, per the Bible folks:
Image
njroar wrote:
Just because gay marriage is legal, doesn't mean if you're a church it's now compulsory for you to perform ceremonies.
Gay marriage isn't legal in Arizona. The Constitution was amended a couple years ago defining marriage as 'traditional biblical'. As such, the entire process to pass this legislation has been a waste of taxpayer money. Another fine example of Republicans' 'fiscal responsiblity'

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February 26th, 2014, 11:45 am
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Modmin Dude
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
WarEr4Christ wrote:
I have a question:

Does a business that serves the public have any rights to deny services without being labeled discriminatory? Does a business HAVE to identify a reason for denying services?
I don't know the answer, but ever since I can remember, there have been signs in most every store that say something like "We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone." That has always meant to me, that they can not serve you and they don't have to tell you why.
WarEr4Christ wrote:
In the particular case you mentioned, what if the photographer said, "I'm sorry, I'll be unavailable that day." Does this constitute discrimination? I am thinking that the photographer opened this can of worms by stating something like, "I'm sorry but I can't photograph your wedding, because I don't support gay weddings." If that was the case, then the responsibility does fall upon the photographer for interjecting their personal beliefs into the situation. Had they chosen to refuse service because they were not going to be available, then the couple to be wed would probably have moved along to another photographer without incident.
Agreed.
WarEr4Christ wrote:
Pablo and Wags, are you attacking Christian beliefs, because the use of the Old Testament doesn't really apply in this case, because Christianity didn't come into play as a RELIGION until the 3rd century A.D. The Old Testament is the portion of the Bible that tells the history of the Jewish people and the prophecies of the time to come. The New Testament is the life and times of Jesus, and the development of the Church, along with the prophecies regarding the End Times. So using OT references and laws to poke fun, and ridicule a religion isn't exactly accurate.
I'm pointing out how this legislation could be used by anyone with religious beliefs, not just 'Christians'. The examples I posted above are in the Bible. Considering as the Bible is basis for several Religions, it stands to reason these and others could be used to deny service to someone under this legislation.
WarEr4Christ wrote:
As a Blood Bought Born Again Believer, my first thought is I would have spent time in prayer about whether or not to accept the job. Second, if I did accept the job, I would have done the BEST JOB possible, and offered a blessing in Jesus Name. Because I would want to leave a favorable and loving impression of Christianity as compared to what you now have. As I've said for some time, Jesus came to RESTORE the relationship between God and Man, RELIGION is focused on rules and rituals that burden people, and ultimately chase them away. This is what American Christianity is doing today, by focusing on the Traditional Mentality (3rd century on) it is adhering to traditions that are burdening people and becoming unfavorable. However, RELATIONAL Christianity is focused on loving, serving, and doing as Jesus did, and this is ultimately much more difficult.
I agree. I don't understand how a religious person, specifically a Christian, could deny service to anyone.

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February 26th, 2014, 11:59 am
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Post Re: AZ bill letting businesses deny service for religious re
A little more info:
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Outcry over Arizona's SB 1062 overshadows bill's limited power

PHOENIX — The hype and rhetoric on both sides of SB 1062, now awaiting action by Gov. Jan Brewer, may disguise the fact that the measure does far less than some have suggested.

The legislation extends existing state laws that provide a shield for those of faith from having to comply with certain government statutes and regulations.

But as with all things, it’s not that simple.

First, despite a key example cited by proponents, the legislation affects neither the rights of gays nor the rights of businesses to refuse service to gays.

The existing Religious Freedom Restoration Act and its proposed expansion in SB 1062 essentially deal with those for whom the government has provided special “protected class” status. That includes issues of gender, race, religion and national origin.

Neither Arizona nor federal law provides any special protection on sexual orientation or gender identification.

That differs from New Mexico, where state law does extend protected status to sexual orientation. New Mexico is often cited in SB 1062 discussions because its state Supreme Court ruled that a gay couple could sue a photographer who refused to take pictures of their wedding. And that’s what got the attention of the LGBT community.

In Arizona, however, nothing in state law requires businesses to serve homosexuals.

And even in Phoenix, Tucson and Flagstaff — cities that extend rights based on sexual orientation — only the government can take action against an offending firm. Companies already are able to claim a shield against government action under existing law. There is no individual right to sue.

“My summary is: It means almost nothing,” said Paul Bender, former dean of the Arizona State University College of Law.

“People talk about, ‘I’ll go into a bakery and ask them for a wedding cake,’ and they’ll say, ‘I don’t do wedding cakes for gay weddings,’ ” Bender said. “So what? You can’t sue them for that.’’

That gets to the heart of what SB 1062 actually would do: provide the same shield to businesses they now have from government action in cases of civil lawsuits — at least in cases of discrimination based on protected classes like race, religion and gender.

But it’s far from automatic.

The law provides a three-part test that someone seeking to use the shield would have to establish in court.

First, the person’s action or refusal to act “is motivated by a religious belief.”

Second, that belief must be “sincerely held.”

And third, there would need to be proof that being forced to do something “substantially burdens the exercise of the person’s religious beliefs.”

It is that last provision that prevents SB 1062 from being a catch-all for any religious claim.

Here’s an example: A Catholic cabdriver refuses to take a pregnant woman to an abortion clinic to terminate her pregnancy.

It would be up to the cabdriver to assert that what the passenger wanted would substantially burden the driver’s religious belief, said Josh Kredit, attorney for the Center for Arizona Policy. Then the woman would have to show there is a legitimate governmental interest in any rules that require cabdrivers to pick up all fares, and that any such restrictions are the least onerous necessary to achieve that.

The outcome of the lawsuit might even depend on whether that was the only taxi in town, Kredit said.

But even that does not end the inquiry. If the business meets that three-part test, then the burden falls on the government — or, in the case of SB 1062, an individual denied service — to persuade the judge to ignore all that.

Specifically, a judge would need to believe that whatever protections are in the law for taxi patrons are necessary both to further “a compelling governmental interest” and that the protections are “the least restrictive means of furthering that compelling governmental interest.”

But Senate President Andy Biggs said he sees no chance of a lawsuit. He said pregnant women are not a “protected class” under Arizona law.

Instead, Biggs prefers the example of a Catholic art gallery owner who refuses to put on display a painting of a crucifix immersed in urine. He said an argument could be made that being forced to display such a painting burdens the owner’s religious beliefs.

Sen. Steve Yarbrough, R-Chandler, the prime sponsor of SB 1062, prefers a different example: A corporation formed by some devout Jews to provide kosher catering that is asked to provide pork products at an event.

Their sincerely held religious beliefs would prevent them from doing that, he says. Without the changes in SB 1062, the business owners could find themselves in court having to defend their actions, he said.

States began enacting their own versions of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act after the Supreme Court ruled that federal law did not extend to them, Bender said. What SB 1062 does, he said, is extend that Arizona law to a private right of action.

“But the main thing people miss is, there’s no right of action against a bigot in the first place,” Bender said. “The bigot doesn’t need this.”

There is, though, one provision that could have some implications, Bender said.

Under current law, the right to claim religious freedom extends to individuals, religious assemblies or institutions. This legislation would expand that to provide a shield to associations, partnerships, corporations, churches and other business organizations.

Still, the issue of SB 1062 goes beyond the question of whether it’s needed or actually would accomplish anything, Bender said. “When you do that, ... people take it as an encouragement to discriminate.”

http://azstarnet.com/news/state-and-reg ... b50b4.html
I'll stick by my assessment of it being a waste of taxpayer money. And I'm still waiting for the definitions of terms...what is the burden of proof for the beliefs?

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February 26th, 2014, 12:26 pm
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