Straight, unmarried couples who have sex could be targeted using Mississippi’s new bigoted law
It turns out LGBT people are not the only ones who will lose out following the successful passage of a new discriminatory law.
House Bill 1523 passed a vote in the State Senate on Wednesday and will now be sent to Governor Phil Bryant to be signed into law, after an amendment vote in the House.
The bill which was passed by the House last month, was voted through the Senate, 31-17, and will be known as the ‘Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act’.
Unlike bills passed in other states, it was believed that the Mississippi bill only protects people with anti-LGBT religious views.
However now it appears the bill actually goes a lot further than just protecting those opposed to equal marriage.
Section 2 of the bill could be interpreted to mean that those opposed to unmarried cohabiting couples could be protected by the new law.
It reads: “The sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions protected by this act are the belief or conviction that:
“(a) Marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman;
“(b) Sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage; and
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“(c) Male (man) or female (woman) refer to an individual’s immutable biological sex as objectively determined by anatomy and genetics at time of birth.”
The bill could be used to protect, for example, a state employee with a ‘religious objection’ to marrying a couple who have had premarital sex.
It could also be used to protect a counsellor or psychologist who has some kind of moral objection to an individual or couple, reports Raw Story.
The silver lining? Although the bill specifies that medical staff opposed to gender reassignment surgery may be protected, it goes on to say that they may not refuse unnecessary care to a person based on their gender identity.
Earlier this week, North Carolina Governor, Pat McCrory, was delivered a ‘gift’ from LGBT protesters after signing a similar law in his state.