Arizona Governor Vetoes Bill on Gays

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    Feb 27, 2014 1:40 AM GMT
    Ending a day that cast a glaring national spotlight on Arizona, the state’s Republican governor, Jan Brewer, decided late Wednesday to veto a bill that would have given business owners the right to refuse service to gays and lesbians on religious grounds.

    Ms. Brewer said at a news conference that she gave the legislation careful deliberation, talking with both sides, before deciding that it would not benefit the state.

    Her action came amid mounting pressure from across the spectrum, including members of the Republican establishment — Gov. Rick Scott of Florida, Mitt Romney and others — who sided with the bill’s opponents.

    As Ms. Brewer deliberated, the state had already begun to lose business: The Hispanic National Bar Association canceled plans to hold its annual convention of 2,000 lawyers here next year because of the bill, saying in a statement, “It is imperative that we speak up and take immediate action in the presence of injustice.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/27/us/Brewer-arizona-gay-service-bill.html?hp&_r=0
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    Feb 27, 2014 1:44 AM GMT
    Not a fan of Brewer, but as a Governor, I have more respect for her than I do for Chris Christie. She's conservative, but makes good choices sometimes.
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    Feb 27, 2014 1:50 AM GMT
    25 years ago it was Gov. Evan Meachem and MLK Day and did that bite them in the ass!
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    Feb 27, 2014 1:53 AM GMT
    I really was doubtful she'd veto it, and I was wrong. She had vetoed a similar law last year, but said it was because of the wording. But that in principle she agreed with religious beliefs trumping gay rights.

    But this time I think she recognized the reality of damage to Arizona. She may not like gays, but she dislikes State economic damage even more. All the big players told her to veto this, and she did.

    Wonderful to see that we're gaining this degree of political influence at last. I'm happy I was wrong with my prediction. icon_biggrin.gif
  • Destinharbor

    Posts: 4435

    Feb 27, 2014 5:43 PM GMT
    Why is it Republicans are so eager to attack and defame us but also willing to throw their beliefs down the drain if it affects their money? Completely disgusting. No honor whatsoever.
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    Feb 27, 2014 5:52 PM GMT
    Yay bigotry not good for business!
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    Feb 27, 2014 6:06 PM GMT
    But... isn't it already perfectly legal to discriminate against gays and lesbians in Arizona? The law would have had no actual effect on that.
  • muscleONmuscl...

    Posts: 301

    Feb 27, 2014 6:40 PM GMT
    mindgarden saidBut... isn't it already perfectly legal to discriminate against gays and lesbians in Arizona? The law would have had no actual effect on that.


    I'm not sure what you're referring to, but this law would have made it legal for private businesses to refuse to serve gays on the basis of their sexual orientation--basically, it was "Jim Crow" for gays in AZ if passed. It makes a huge difference in that it prevents a giant step backwards and shows that even a very conservative, nay backwards, state like AZ can't afford the economic and cultural backlash of this kind of open bigotry enshrined into law. Couple this with the way things have been going in the courts on Prop. 8, the passage of state referudums legalizing gay marriage, the coming out of athletes, and it almost feels like the equivalent of the Berlin Wall falling in 1989: who knew things would start to move so right and so fast. May it continue until all the barriers are smashed into souvenirs.
  • tckrguys

    Posts: 133

    Feb 27, 2014 6:51 PM GMT
    The bill allowed for discrimination against anyone for religious reasons provided reasonable accommodation had been made.

    This means that a fundamentalist Christian could waiter could refuse to server an interracial couple or an unwed mother based on his religious beliefs. The restaurant would have to have another waiter serve them, however if another waiter was not available the restaurant could refuse service.

    This type of legislation is so broadly written, and the fact that you can find/interpret any type of discrimination from the bible, koran, torah, etc., that basically anyone could discriminate against anyone provided they said it was for religious reasons.
  • TroyAthlete

    Posts: 4269

    Feb 27, 2014 6:56 PM GMT
    mindgarden saidBut... isn't it already perfectly legal to discriminate against gays and lesbians in Arizona? The law would have had no actual effect on that.


    Allegedly, but no business has dared do it -- so there is no test case (yet).

    These conservative religious discrimination bills are more demonstration that the modern Republican Party is the archenemy of freedom and equality in America, and opposed to the American social contract as ensconced in the Preamble to the US Constitution.

    That said, gay couples (usually lesbian couples, correct if wrong) who are suing bakers and wedding photographers for not wanting to be involved in their weddings really need to get a grip. Businesses should not be allowed legally to discriminate, but the LGBT community need not be sore winners. Live and let live. These lawsuits do not bring goodwill. We are winning; take your business elsewhere folks.

    I actually would not oppose -- would not support but would not oppose -- a narrowly written law along these grounds specific to the wedding industry. Forcing a photographer to photograph your wedding for any reason is a bridge too far in my opinion. But these anti-gay Republican Jim Crow laws are too broadly written. The Republican Party will always overreach and overreact; they would make a better case if they could control themselves.
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    Feb 27, 2014 7:04 PM GMT
    In a NYT op-ed today, it was opined that the GOP brand is permanently tarnished by the use of religious liberty to discriminate against gays:

    The pace of Americans’ changing attitudes has been breathtakingly swift and shows no signs of abating.

    In fact, a report by the nonpartisan Public Religion Research Institute produced some rather striking findings.

    According to the report, not only do most religiously unaffiliated Americans now support same-sex marriage, but so do most white mainline Protestants, white Catholics, Hispanic Catholics and Jews.

    Most Americans across the ideological spectrum, including even a majority of Tea Party supporters, support protecting gay men and lesbians from workplace discrimination, and most Americans believe that discrimination faced by gay people is greater than that faced by Muslims, blacks, women or Jews. The group the participants said faced the least amount of discrimination was evangelical Christians — the current campaign to portray them as an aggrieved and embattled class notwithstanding.

    But perhaps the worst harbinger for the future in the report, as far as conservatives are concerned, were the views of millennials (those ages 18 to 33). Seventy percent of these young people believe “that religious groups are alienating young adults by being too judgmental on gay and lesbian issues,” the report found.
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    Feb 27, 2014 7:38 PM GMT
    Jan Brewer only did what she had to do. She did not call the bill wrong because it discriminates against gays. She did not call discrimination against gays wrong. I can't celebrate when a politician does what she was forced to do.
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    Feb 28, 2014 3:24 AM GMT
    We're not all assholes, just most of the politicians.