by Mike Ferguson
(Springfield, MO) – This year’s US Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage did not “settle the issue” completely. In many ways, there are more questions than answers and more conflicts to navigate now than there were before.
While the direction set by the Court is mostly clear for government, how the ruling applies in the private sector is not agreed upon. At least not yet.
That’s why a “Religious Freedom Protection Act” has been proposed in several states, including in Missouri. This week, State Representative Elijah Haar (R) explains why he supports the idea, believes it’s needed to protect houses of worship and people of faith in the private sector (such as Christian business owners, some of whom have been in the headlines for declining business with gay couples, etc.).
Stephanie Perkins disagrees with the proposal and says gay couples, and everyone else in LGBT categories have a right to conduct business with anyone, even if the business owners don’t want it. She’s the Deputy Director of PROMO, Missouri’s largest gay rights advocacy group.
Perkins also addresses the “Missouri Nondiscrimination Act”, that would, among other changes, add sexual orientation and gender identity to the state’s anti-discrimination laws.
Both proposals are likely to be debated in the Missouri Legislature again in 2016.
On the web:
- Special thanks to FOX 5 (KRBK TV) for hosting us for this week’s program.