The latest on reactions to a Mississippi law allowing religious groups and some private businesses to gay and transgender people because of their religious beliefs.
Some Mississippians say a new law allowing religious groups and some private businesses to deny services to gay and transgender people is needed protection for Christians who adhere to traditional views of marriage and gender roles.
But others say Gov. Phil Bryant’s decision Tuesday to sign the bill amounts to discrimination, even if they find same-sex marriage morally offensive.
The reactions came Wednesday as some law professors questioned whether the new state law will withstand legal scrutiny, saying parts of it may violate the First Amendment by favoring particular religious beliefs. They warn other parts of the law may violate the 14th Amendment’s requirement for equal protection under the law.
Supporters of the law say they’re confident the protections will stand up to challenges.
The Mississippi governor’s decision to sign a law that allows religious groups and some private businesses to deny services to gay and transgender people may have headed off opposition in the state’s business community, but it could open the state to lawsuits.
Saying he was protecting religious freedom, Republican Gov. Phil Bryant signed the bill Tuesday without hesitation or fanfare just hours after it cleared its final legislative obstacle Monday.
Reaction from two large business associations which had released statements opposing the bill was muted, although some individual companies are criticizing the decision.
Opponents say they’ll consider a legal challenge, and Democratic state Attorney General Jim Hood says he’ll make “case-by-case” decisions on whether to defend the lawsuits, warning the bill doesn’t override federal law or constitutional rights.
BEFORE YOU GO…
… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.
If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.Click for more info