Mississippi Religious Freedom Law Struck Down

A judge struck down a Mississippi law designed to protect opponents of gay marriage. Unlike other Religious Freedom Restoration Act bills, which are broadly worded to protect any religious belief, the Mississippi law explicitly protects religious beliefs about marriage. The judge’s argument was that by singling out only specific religious beliefs for protection, the law is endorsing these beliefs. Which is a debatable point, but at least it sounds like a nice, neutral argument, doesn’t it?

But then there’s this account of oral arguments (http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/07/01/484291451/judge-blocks-mississippi-law-protecting-religious-objections-to-gay-marriage):

“The judge was asking the state, what were the nonreligious reasons for this bill? And they said, ‘Well, Obergeffell (the Court case legalizing gay marriage) tipped the tables of justice away from people who are against gay marriage.’

“And Judge Reeves said, ‘Well, isn’t that like saying Brown v. Board of Education tipped the tables away from segregationists.’”

And that’s not nearly so neutral, is it? The justification has suddenly morphed to “these religious beliefs are wrong, so I’m going to strike down a law protecting them.”


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