STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX - Arizona State Senators voted Wednesday in favor of passing a bill which would allow business owners to refuse service to Homosexuals, based on the business owners religious beliefs.
The bill, SB 1062, passed with a 17 -13 vote. Steven Yarbrough, Republican Senator, who voted in favor of the bill, stated that the bill is not about the discrimination of Homosexuals as much as it is about protecting people of faith.
"This bill is not about discrimination," said Yarbrough, "It's about preventing discrimination against people who are clearly living out their faith."
In a statement released Wednesday evening by the Arizona Senate Democratic Caucus, the passing of SB 1062 is not only unwanted by Arizona citizens, but could open the door to other discriminatory bills.
“SB 1062 permits discrimination under the guise of religious freedom. With the express consent of Republicans in this Legislature, many Arizonans will find themselves members of a separate and unequal class under this law because of their sexual orientation,” said Senate Democratic Leader Anna Tovar. “This bill may also open the door to discriminate based on race, familial status, religion, sex, national origin, age or disability.”
“Legislation of this kind has been attempted this year in Kansas, South Dakota, Tennessee and Idaho. Each of those attempts failed after prominent members of the business community spoke against the measures. While our state continues to recover from the public relations nightmare of SB 1070, the Republican supporters of this bill are willing to elicit the inevitable backlash and boycotts that will result from its passage.”
“Arizona does not need this bill, Arizonans do not want this bill and there is no place for this bill in our modern society. We have come too far to turn back the clock with such a disgraceful assault on members of our community based on their sexual orientation.” -Arizona State Senate Democratic Caucus/Blogspot
House Minority Leader, Chad Campbell, D-Phoenix (District 24) states how the passing of SB 1062, would not help businesses, education, or create jobs.
“This bill takes aim at the LGBTQ community. It seems to be a reaction to the civil rights laws passed by Phoenix, Tucson and Flagstaff. SB 1062 does nothing to create jobs and it does nothing to improve education. Instead, it promotes extremism and provides opportunities for discrimination. The bottom line is, this bill is going to hurt the LGBTQ community and that is unacceptable.” -‘Arizona House Democrats’
Martin Quezada. D-Phoenix (District 29), Caucus Co-chair said that the Latino community would not stand for the bill or any bill giving permission to discrimination.
“Our Latino community has faced discrimination and intolerance in this state for generations. We will not sit silent as other communities are being threatened with similar bigotry.” said Quezada “Today the Latino Caucus took an official position against HB 2153 and SB 1062 because they are simply platforms for extremism. These bills would provide protection for discrimination and should not be allowed to become the law of the land.”
The Democratic Representative says of the Latino community,
We stand in solidarity with all people who promote fair treatment and equality. -‘Arizona House Democrats’
Republican representatives who voted in favor of House Bill 2452, a similar bill in Kansas, stated that the bill does not target gay people. The wording of the bill would allow someone with a “sincerely held” religious belief against heterosexual marriage to deny service to a straight couple, they say.
Rep. Mark Kahrs, R-Wichita, said the bill would protect a lesbian photographer who wanted to refuse to work for a Catholic wedding based on the church’s stance against same-sex marriage. -The Wichita Eagle
The Bible is the centerpiece of Christian faith and religious belief, and the question asked most by Christians of each other is : “What would Jesus do?” According to the biblical account of Jesus’ life as recorded in the Bible, he didn't refuse anyone service himself.
“Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people.” -the Bible/ Book of Matthew 9:35/ King James Version
According to the Bible, Jesus also turned water into wine, at the request of his mother, for the guests of a wedding, without any inquiry into their spiritual backgrounds.
“Jesus said to them, ‘Fill the waterpots with water.’ And they filled them up to the brim. And He said to them, ‘Draw some out now, and take it to the master of the feast.’ And they took it. When the master of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the master of the feast called the bridegroom. And he said to him, ‘Every man at the beginning sets out the good wine, and when the guests have well drunk, then the inferior. You have kept the good wine until now!'" -the Bible/ Book of John 2:7-10/ NKJV
Jesus, according to the same biblical history didn't even ask the criminal who was being crucified next to him what his crime was, what he believed, or his sexual orientation before offering him post-death life in Paradise.
“One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: ‘Aren't you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!’ But the other criminal rebuked him. ‘Don’t you fear God,’ he said, ‘since you are under the same sentence? We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong’ Then he said, ‘Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.’Jesus answered him, ‘Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.’” -the Bible/ Book of Luke 23:39-43/NIV
- Read Bill SB 1062 here
- Kansas House passes bill that would allow service refusal to same-sex couples…
- Arizona State Legislature: Documents For Bill SB 1062
I want to hear from you
- How do you feel about the passing of SB 1062?
- How do you think this will impact Arizona and other states?
- What religious laws forbid someone from providing service to someone based on sexual orientation?
- Is bill SB 1062, in your opinion, going to help or hurt the economy and/or the American people? How?