Target: Rick Snyder, Michigan Governor
Goal: End legalized discrimination against the LGBTQ community rationalized by “freedom of religion”
Discrimination against LGBTQ people on the basis of religious beliefs might soon be legal in Michigan. The Michigan House just passed a new law allowing individuals and businesses to discriminate because of their religious beliefs. For example, the law would make it legal for an EMT to refuse to treat a gay person, which can clearly have severe consequences for the lives of many individuals. Please call on Michigan’s governor and ask him to take action against this discriminatory law.
The Religious Freedom Restoration Act will allow “individuals or businesses to seek exemptions for government regulations they feel substantially burden their sincerely held religious beliefs.” These government regulations include anti-discrimination laws. What is the purpose of regulations if anyone can be exempt from them because of their religious beliefs? Discrimination should be illegal whether or not discriminators believe that their behavior and beliefs are just.
This law would permit many forms of discrimination, and therefore cannot be allowed to go into effect. It will make vulnerable populations even more vulnerable, and might seriously harm individuals with certain identities that some religions do not accept. Please take action now and do not let this become reality for Michigan residents.
Dear Governor Snyder,
I am writing to ask you to take action against The Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which will allow discrimination against many groups, including LGBTQ individuals. It was East Lansing in Michigan that became the first city in the U.S. to ban discrimination against gay individuals 40 years ago, but this law threatens that legacy. I ask that you take immediate action to repeal this law and protect the rights of many individuals in your state, who do not deserve to be discriminated against.
This law could create an extremely dangerous situation where, for example, a Christian EMT could refuse treatment to a gay person because homosexuality is a sin according to his or her religion. It could also affect people’s opportunity to be employed, their education, and their access to services. It is unacceptable for this kind of discrimination to be allowed by law in 2o14.
Please act now to stop this law from going into effect. Please do not legalize discrimination against people who already face enough challenges and stigmas.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Steve & Christine via Wikimedia Commons