By Jonah Goldberg
Future historians will likely be flummoxed by the moment we’re living in. In what amounts to less than a blink of an eye in the history of Western civilization, homosexuality has gone from a diagnosed mental disorder to something to be celebrated — or else.
Indeed, the rush to mandatory celebration is so intense, refusal is now considered tantamount to a crime. And, in some rare instances, an actual crime if the right constable or bureaucrat concludes that you have uttered “hate speech.”
Arizona’s proposed SB 1062 would have amended the state’s 15-year-old Religious Freedom Restoration Act in a minor way so as to cover businesses. Arizona’s religious-freedom statute was modeled on a similar federal law signed by Bill Clinton after passing with large bipartisan majorities in both houses. It would have allowed small businesses to decline work that violated their consciences, unless the government could show a compelling reason why such refusal was unreasonable or unjust.
But I find the idea that government can force people to violate their conscience without a compelling reason repugnant. I agree with my friend, columnist Deroy Murdock. He thinks private businesses should be allowed to serve whomever they want. Must a gay baker make a cake for the hateful idiots of the Westboro Baptist Church? Must he write “God hates fags!” in the icing?
The ridiculous invocations of Jim Crow are utterly ahistorical, by the way. Jim Crow was state-enforced, and businesses that wanted to serve blacks could be prosecuted.
Read more: National Review Online
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