Like the mafia, every time I say I’m not going to write anything more about politics, I’m brought back in. So much so, I’ve thought about starting an additional blog dedicated to just my political beliefs in an effort to keep it light over here. Stay tuned for that and I promise, like an alcoholic, I’ll quit Monday.
After my cousin found out who I voted for, we have had several thoughtful conversations since then and guess what? No one is throwing themselves on hot coals. No one is calling the other names or swearing to leave the country. Why? It’s called maturity. It’s called being an American and respecting the electoral process.
Cousin F. sent me a list of his concerns with the new administration, all with bullet points- because that is the kind of OCD we have in this family (I would have used bullet points too!). One stuck out because it was a bill, that to me, seemed pretty discriminatory. It’s the First Amendment Defense Act or Religious Liberty Bill.
Oh, you don’t know about this bill? It sounds very patriotic and at first glance, you would think (do it in baby talk), ‘this is just a whittle bill, trying to make it big in the big bad world.’
Well, it’s not a whittle. It’s a big bad bill.
So here’s the thing: let’s say 2 gay men have decided to tie the knot in California. The sky is the limit! We’re talking tulle everywhere, hand written invitations, a flower budget normally suited for the Rose Bowl and live animals aren’t off the table yet. Bill (no idea why, but his name is going to be Bill) has one sentimental request for the wedding. He wants the bakery that mom would always use, to bake the wedding cake. Shawn (again, no idea why…that was the first name that popped in my head. I lie, Bob was the first name but I don’t like that name. No offense to all the Bob’s in the world, I’m sure your lovely) agrees to this.
So Bill and Shawn head over to the bakery to pick out cakes. Unbeknownst to Bill, the bakery has changed hands but mom said the new owner- Betty Anne, has kept everything the same- the recipes, the assortment, the decorations- everything. Betty Anne prides herself on her strong religious views and upon learning this cake would be for a gay wedding, she immediately states she cannot serve Bill and Shawn. This discrimination would be protected under this new law.
Oh but it gets better……
Let’s say a very young couple comes into a coffee shop to pick up their grande, mocha, vanilla, chip, frappe, latte with their newborn but they aren’t married. The shop owner has the right to refuse to serve them because his strong religious beliefs are that you shouldn’t have sex before marriage. From my understanding, assumptions can be made and used against you at any point. My husband lost his wedding ring (THAT HE HAS YET TO REPLACE, AHEM!). Does this mean we will have to carry around a copy of our marriage certificate so no one thinks I’m his sugar momma?
And that is why I ask: Is this 1961?
You would have to be the biggest moron on Earth to “exercise your beliefs” if this law were to pass. This is 2017 and bad press moves at the speed of light. If you denied anyone service because of what they do in the privacy of their own homes, you might as well close your doors now. Money is money and I can guarantee you, when that offering plate comes around Sunday morning, it’s not going to reject the money because it’s from a gay person.
So what do we do? I don’t have an answer yet. I will tell you I sent my concerns to the office of Ted Cruz and checked the box that I wanted a response back (Ted Cruz and Mike Lee reintroduced the bill). This was in December and to date, no response. He did however put me on his stupid mailing list which I’ve since unsubscribed to. I even sent a follow up message to try to understand why they think this bill is a good idea and again, nothing. So my next step, having voted for Trump, I am writing the President to convey my thoughts on this matter.
I would love to hear your responses contingent upon a mature response. By mature, I mean no name calling and no insults. If this is too big of an ask, I heard PBS KIDS has a blog. You can go there.