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Breaking: Michigan House Passes Religious ‘License To Discriminate’ Bill

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Michigan House Republicans just passed a religious “license to discriminate” bill, which would allow anyone to refuse service to anyone and claim their “religious beliefs” require them to discriminate.

The Michigan House of Representatives, led by Speaker Jase Bolger (photo, above, left, with Gov. Rick Snyder,) just passed a bill that would allow discrimination to become sanction by the state. The Religious Freedom Restoration Act, akin to one that made nationwide headlines in Arizona but was vetoed, appears to merely force the government to step aside if a person’s “deeply-held religious beliefs” mandate they act, or not act, in a certain manner.

Supporters of these bills claim they allow people of faith to exercise their religion without government interference, but in reality, they are trojan horses, allowing rampant discrimination under the guise of religious observance.

For example, under the Religious Freedom law, a pharmacist could refuse to fill a doctor’s prescription for birth control, or HIV medication. An emergency room physician or EMT could refuse service to a gay person in need of immediate treatment. A school teacher could refuse to mentor the children of a same-sex couple, and a DMV clerk could refuse to give a driver’s license to a person who is divorced. 

Michigan Speaker Bolger fast-tracked the bill, which passed on partisan lines, 59-50. It now heads to the Michigan Senate, and if successful, to Republican Governor Rick Snyder. It is not known if Gov. Snyder would sign it. 

RELATED: Kansas Republican Promises To Pass Anti-Gay Marriage ‘Religious Freedom’ Bill

“I support individual liberty and I support religious freedom,” Bolger said today. “I have been horrified as some have claimed that a person’s faith should only be practiced while hiding in their home or in their church.”

MLive reports that Michigan’s RFRA is “modeled after a federal version that the Supreme Court has said should not apply to states.”

Editor’s note 12.07.14 3:33 PM EST: Without noting the change, (Google cache of original article, screenshot should that change,) MLive’s article now reads: 

The Michigan RFRA, modeled after a federal version that the Supreme Court has ruled does not apply to states, would establish a two-part balancing test for legal challenges, according to Bolger.

“The idea that we need to ‘restore’ religious freedom — rights that are already enshrined in the U.S. Constitution — is a farce created by conservative lawmakers for the sole purpose of appeasing their far-right donors and the religious-right,” Lonnie Scott, executive director of Progress Michigan, said in a statement.

Earlier today a Michigan House committee failed to pass an LGBT non-discrimination bill after a local anti-gay pastor delivered scathing testimony. 

“No one from the LGBT community has ever had fire hoses turned on them by the police department, they have never had to drink out of an LGBT water fountain,” Stacy Swimp told the committee. “There is no record of LGBT — homosexuals, lesbians being forced to sit at the back of the bus in an LGBT section.”

Some responses via Twitter:

 

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

Watch: Right Wing Host at NRA Convention Likens 18 Year Olds Buying Guns to 3rd Graders Deciding Gender

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A host from a right-wing streaming service covering the NRA convention in Houston decided to compare conservatives’ growing active opposition to the rights and existence of transgender people, to the majority of Americans demanding expanded gun control legislation.

“We are being told by the left that a third-grader has the knowledge to determine if they were born a boy or they were born a girl, whether or not they want to stay that gender that they were born with,” said Brian Glenn, Right Side Broadcasting’s director of programming and correspondent.

“And if we feel like at a third grade you can make decisions on your gender, then I think by the time you’re 18 you should have enough maturity – assuming you’re not a complete psychopath – to buy a handgun and exercise your Second Amendment.”

Of course, that hypothetical third-grader is harming exactly no one and later can reverse that decision if they choose, which the vast majority do not.

That hypothetical 18-year old, or, in the case of this week’s horrific tragedy, an actual 18-year old, buying two AR-15 style assault weapons and hundreds of rounds of ammunition within three days of their 18th birthday, gunning down 21 people including 19 elementary school children, cannot reverse any of those decisions.

Watch:

 

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News

Local Texas Cops Blocked Specialized Federal Tactical Team That Killed Shooter From Engaging for One Hour

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When a specially equipped U.S. Border Patrol tactical team arrived on the scene of Tuesday’s school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, local police who were already on the scene wouldn’t allow them to engage with the shooter, The New York Times reports.

“The agents from Border Patrol and Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrived at some point between 12 p.m. and 12:10 p.m., according to the officials — far earlier than previously known,” The Times’ report stated. “But they did not breach the adjoining classrooms of the school where the gunman had locked himself in until a little before 1 p.m. Members of the federal tactical team killed the gunman.”

But officials speaking to The Times say the Uvalde Police Department prevented the agents from going in sooner.

The new details further call into the question the thinking behind how law enforcement responded to the shooting that killed 19 students and two teachers. The Border Patrol and ICE agents say they did not understand why they were force to wait. All of the 21 victims died in the area where 18-year-old Salvador Ramos had barricaded himself in.

IN OTHER NEWS: Christian summer camp ‘rebuked’ girls who reported assault and told them to ‘forgive’ assailant: report

Read the full report at The New York Times.

 

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BREAKING NEWS

Cops Waited 47 Minutes Because They Were Waiting for a Key to the Door, Thought Shooter Was Barricaded Despite 911 Calls

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Texas law enforcement officers on scene in Uvalde, Texas waited 47 minutes to break into the classroom where an 18-year old gunman slaughtered 19 children because they were waiting for a key to open the door, and thought it was no longer an active shooter situation.

“From the benefit of hindsight…it was the wrong decision,” admitted Texas Department of Public Safety director Col. Steven McGraw.

That decision was made despite children calling 911 during that time, begging for help, according to multiple reports, including this from the New York Times’ Mike Baker:

“You say there were 19 officers gathered in the hallway or somewhere,” CNN’s Shimon Prokupecz said during Friday’s press conference. “What efforts were made to try and break through that door? You say it was locked. What efforts were the officers making?”

“None at that time,” DPS director replied.

“The on-scene commander at that time believed it had transitioned from an active shooter to a barricaded subject,” he said, adding moments later that “he believed there were no more children at risk.”

“Obviously, based on the information we have, there were children in that classroom and it was in fact still an active shooter investigation.”

Watch:

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. 

This article has been updated with New York Times’ 911 call information.

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