Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation Nondiscrimination Ordinances Compromise Religious Liberty
It has been proven time and again that discrimination ordinances that extend protected status to cover sexual orientation and gender identity create legal uncertainty for individuals, businesses, schools and churches. Many times these new rules catch people by surprise when they find themselves accused of discrimination and targets of lawsuits.
Because most of the major religions in our nation, Christianity, Judaism, Mormonism and Islam hold certain tenets regarding sexual behavior including the belief that homosexual conduct is immoral, these major religions are judged to be in direct conflict with most nondiscrimination laws. This results because the nondiscrimination laws are written to prohibit any religious person, (a business owner or a student for example) who holds these beliefs about homosexual behavior from acting upon their moral convictions. Religious freedom becomes subservient to nondiscrimination laws which protect immoral behavior.
Indeed our Founding Fathers thought religious liberty so very important that it was included in the First Amendment to the Constitution where we read that there shall be neither the establishment of religion nor the prohibition of the free exercise thereof.
There are a number of examples where the courts or human rights panels have judged the nondiscrimination rules to 'trump' religious liberties. Pastors, churches, businesses, schools, individuals and religious groups have all been targeted at one time or another. It is simply astounding that these new rules can have such a destructive effect upon religious liberty.
Awaken Kansas has compiled a number of examples in three categories demonstrating the destructive force these ordinances have upon religious liberties. While these lists are not exhaustive, many examples exist. It is also important to note that it is not the sheer number of lawsuits that result from these ordinances (although that is a very valid concern) – it is the legal precedent set by case law that has a lasting effect on subsequent legal decisions for many years.
Click below to read of nondiscrimination lawsuits which have impacted each of the following areas: