After two long years of ferocious debate, the Georgia Legislature finally passed a controversial religious liberty bill on Wednesday that would protect churches, clergy, and other individuals of faith from being forced to betray their beliefs. House Bill 757 is vehemently opposed by LGBT groups, who say it gives citizens the legal right to discriminate against gays. It now heads to Gov. Nathan Deal, who has expressed reservations about the bill. It remains to be seen whether he’ll sign it into law.
If it were just LGBT groups and typical leftists opposing the bill, the governor would probably go forward with the legislation. But Deal faces the same corporate opposition that put the brakes on similar religious freedom laws in Indiana last year. Companies like Coca-Cola and Microsoft have warned that the bill will have a deleterious effect on the Georgia economy.
The Metro Atlanta Chamber released a statement opposing the bill. “This legislation is in conflict with the values of diversity and inclusion that Georgians hold dear and could erode Georgia’s hard-earned status as the No. 1 state for business – and would harm our ability to create and keep jobs that Georgia families depend upon,” said the business group.
The bill provides protection for pastors, ensuring that they cannot be legally compelled to perform same-sex weddings. It also allows faith-based organizations to refuse to serve couples if they have a religious or moral objection to gay marriage. The bill also includes language that says no individuals can be forced to attend a gay wedding, and it gives religious organizations the right to refuse to rent their facilities for such an event.
Unfortunately, it’s hard to see a promising path forward for this legislation in today’s liberal climate. The LGBT Mafia has successfully convinced many Americans that gays are entitled to special protections under the law, and we’ve seen several examples of Christian businesses being fined for refusing to provide services to gay weddings. This is the new civil rights battle, and these activists are not going to stop fighting until “gay rights” are written into the Constitution.
Let’s not forget: the Supreme Court basically invented gay marriage less than a year ago. Out of nowhere, they decided that suddenly it was a violation of the 14th Amendment for states to ban gay marriage. After thousands of years of near-unanimous, worldwide agreement that marriage consisted of a man and a woman, liberals magically decided that society was wrong. And now, anyone who isn’t on board is an intolerant bigot.
Christian conservatives are fighting the good fight, and we can hope for the best, but meanwhile, the liberals who came up with this nonsense are likely trying to find the next “marginalized” group to whom they can give special protections. This country is changing fast, and not for the better.