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A Rare Loss In Arizona for Herrod

Jim Burroway

February 26th, 2014

Cathi Herrod heads the Focus On the Family-affiated Center for Arizona Policy (CAP), and she’s become quite accustomed to having her entire legislative agenda breeze through the legislature year after year. But today’s veto of SB 1072 by Gov. Jan Brewer represents an exceptionally rare moment of sanity for the state of Arizona and a highly unusual setback for Herrod:

Today’s veto of SB 1062 marks a sad day for Arizonans who cherish and understand religious liberty.

SB 1062 passed the legislature for one reason only: to guarantee that all Arizonans would be free to live and work according to their faith.

Opponents were desperate to distort this bill rather than debate the merits. Essentially, they succeeded in getting a veto of a bill that does not even exist.

When the force of government compels one to speak or act contrary to their conscience, the government injures not only the dignity of the afflicted, but the dignity of our society as a whole.

SB 1062 made certain that governmental laws cannot force people to violate their faith unless it has a compelling governmental interest–a balancing of interests that has been in federal law since 1993.

The religious beliefs of all Arizonans must be respected and this bill did nothing more than affirm that. It is truly a disappointing day in our state and nation when lies and personal attacks can over shadow the truth.”

You can see the devastating chaos that bill would have caused had it become law here and here.

Comments

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Arthur
February 27th, 2014 | LINK

The religious are not uber-citizens deserving of special rights beyond the 1st Amendment.

Jack
February 27th, 2014 | LINK

Arizona ranks as one of the LEAST religious states ironically.

Nathaniel
February 27th, 2014 | LINK

Here is what I don’t get: If you are merely affirming rights people are already entitled to, why codify it? Or, rather, why extra-codify it? This bill wouldn’t have stopped the legislature from later adding orientation and gender identity to anti-discrimination rules. Nor did it undo bans on discriminating against people based on sex, race or religion. So, the primary reason for this law is moot.

I saw one defender of the bill keep saying “We don’t discriminate in Arizona. We don’t want discrimination in Arizona.” It left me with the same question: What, then, is the point of the bill? Either it would do what its opponents claimed, or it would do nothing. If the first, then it was a bad bill. If the latter, then it was a pointless bill. Either way, it shouldn’t have made it to the Governor’s desk. Of course, it may have been telling that this defender kept denouncing discrimination against “fellow human beings.” It might be that, to him, divorcees and unwed mothers are more human than LGBT people.

Priya Lynn
February 27th, 2014 | LINK

Nathaniel, I think the promoters of bills like these have extreme congnitive dissonance. They know the purpose of the bill is to discriminate and that’s what they want to do but they want to think they’re not bad people who discriminate so they tell themselves the bill doesn’t discriminate even though on another level that is exactly what they’re after. They believe reality can be whatever they choose to characterize it as, if they say its not discriminatory then somehow the paradox doesn’t exist.

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