In case you've been trapped under something heavy, Arizona is looking to go all-in on being terrible with a proposed bill that would allow business owners of that state to refuse service to gay and lesbian consumers based on religious grounds.
The news of Arizona going all Alabama Circa 1963 is resonating nationwide, including in Wilton Manors, where Mayor Gary Resnick has written and sent a letter to Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer.
In the letter, Resnick asks Brewer to veto SB 1062 and encourages her to lead the way in sending a message that discrimination of any kind is wrong.
The bill, which has been slathered with the most 'Murica name ever, "The Religious Freedom Bill," would straight up give business owners the right to refuse service to gays and lesbians.
For example, florists or photographers hired by gay couples for weddings could turn down the hire based purely on them feeling icky about the gays. Supermarkets could refuse making the couple a gay wedding cake (although what self-respecting gay couple is gonna buy their cake at some shitty supermarket, really?)
Ryan Anderson of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, says the bill protects religious freedoms of these respective businesses.
"We've seen countless examples of florists and bakers and photographers who have been sued and who have lost their cases where government has insisted they have to help celebrate the same-sex wedding ceremony," he said.
Of course, the same thing was said about other laws in the past (*cough*JIMCROW*cough*), and underneath the surface the bill is nothing more than an appeasement of far Right Wing Nutters, hate mongers, and people who think that if they attend a gay wedding, they'll catch some of The Gay.
And, by the way, Georgia, Tennessee, Kansas, and South Dakota are all considering similar bills.
Your move, Florida!
But Resnick took to his letter to reason with Brewer, saying, "This bill has the potential to serve as dangerous precedent for the entire country. Once you allow religious beliefs to justify refusing to engage in commerce with gays and lesbians, this opens up a huge can of worms."
Brewer has until Friday to veto the bill. So far, all signs point to her doing just that. But you never know with this lady.
Here's to hoping Resnick's letter makes some kind of dent.
Send your story tips to the author, Chris Joseph.
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