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Fournier compares Arizona bill to segregation

Timothy Kincaid

February 27th, 2014

Ron Fournier, a conservative writer, made some interesting comparisons between the (now vetoed) Arizona bill to legalize discrimination against gay people and the efforts to keep segregated schools in the South. Rather than focus on the similarities or differences between the two efforts, he discusses the motivations and justification. (National Journal)

For me, it starts with the time I spent in Arkansas with Faubus, Bates and Clinton, several members of the Little Rock Nine and countless others touched by the 1957 crisis. Faubus began his career as a progressive Democrat who desegregated state buses and public transportation and considered the possibility of introducing multi-race schools after his 1954 election. A challenge from his right prompted Faubus to adopt a segregationist stance, which he disingenuously insisted was not a matter of race. With public opinion so strongly against the Supreme Court ruling in 1957, Faubus argued that integrating would undermine the safety of all students.

Safety was his straw man. Religious liberty, like public safety, is a just cause, except when it’s used to justify intolerance.

“This bill … bars government discrimination against religious exercise,” Tony Perkins, head of the conservative Family Research Council, said of the Arizona measure, “so by vetoing this bill, Gov. Brewer is saying she supports government discrimination against people’s religious freedom.”

No, that’s not what she’s saying. Brewer no more supports religious discrimination than Eisenhower encouraged violence in public schools. Perkins knows better, and his inflammatory language hurts his cause.

Comments

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TwirlyGirly
February 28th, 2014 | LINK

Of course the far-right Fundiebot response to the comparison of this bill to segregation is “But skin color/race is not a choice, and being gay IS – so it’s DIFFERENT!”

BTW, the BTB analysis of this (vetoed, thank God) bill was fantastic. Thank you for all the time and hard work all of you guys put into those articles!

atriokke
February 28th, 2014 | LINK

well the conclusion he got to was surprising. To no surprise of course, like usual words are like a contortionist’s body.

Pacal
March 1st, 2014 | LINK

May I point out religion is a choice. So by this logic assuming that being Gay is a choice, (And it isn’t) is a reason to deny protections against discrimination then they should have no problems accepting religious discrimination.

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