Religious freedom or anti-gay: FilAms weigh in on controversial AZ bill

By Fleur Magbanua-Mansur, ABS-CBN North America Bureau

Feb. 28, 2014

PHOENIX, AZ – Even after Arizona Governor Jan Brewer vetoed Senate Bill 1062, a law that would have allowed businesses to refuse service to gays and lesbians if it goes against their religious beliefs, some political experts said this is not likely to end the religious freedom movement in America.

Similar laws are being considered in other states – Georgia, Idaho, Mississippi, Missouri, Ohio, Oregon, South Dakota, Colorado, Kansas, Maine, Tennessee and Utah.

Donald Catedral, a Filipino who supports the bill, reminds people that this is a movement for religious freedom – not an attack against gays and lesbians.

He stressed, “It’s is not anti-gay law. I am not anti-gay. We tend to forget the rights of Christians. We do have rights.”

But other Filipino-Americans said the bill ultimately promotes discrimination against members of the LGBT community, something that should not be tolerated in this day and age.

“This is the 21st century. A lot of us came to America because of the freedom and liberties that we enjoy in this country,” Marie Cunning said.

Some Filipino business owners said religion should not necessarily be a factor in running a business.

“I don’t look at who they are — if they’re Black, White, gay or lesbian. As long as they are putting money into my business, that’s what’s important,” Jeff Delgado said.

For her part, Brewer said she had to veto SB 1062 because it did not address specific dangers to religious freedom. She said she’s confident she made the right decision – as this controversial bill could divide Americans in ways we cannot even imagine.

4 Comments on this post.

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  • Peter
    1 March 2014 at 2:16 am - Reply

    Gay couple asked the Bakery Restaurant to bake cake for their wedding celebration. The baker who believed on “marriage is between man and a woman” refused, because it is against his religious belief. The bakery got sued for discrimination. The Bakery bankrupt, workers became jobless, and bakery closed shop.That is the background of this bill 1062. The Republican Governor try to protect small businesses, “business reserve the right to refuse services”

  • philman
    1 March 2014 at 2:35 pm - Reply

    respect rights of others. unpleasant
    to eyes of others especially children
    should be avoided.

  • Delia
    2 March 2014 at 9:56 am - Reply

    The good of the people sacrificed on the altar of what might be bad for business and thus ensuring the generation of filthy lucre no matter what the moral cost. Arizona leaders have shown
    themselves to be in the money trap of evil and support it, they like it more than anything else, it is their God.
    Brewer failed the people of Arizona should sack the whole lot of the miserable
    miscreant professional politicians and get a clean start.

  • BC
    3 March 2014 at 1:26 am - Reply

    On 1993 President Clinton signed and passed exactly the same bill including the wording, favoring business establishment. There were no comment from the media and gay community. Today, Gov Brewer a Republican, the media and gay community were crying loud.