Regarding the Jan. 28 news article “ ‘Freedom’ talk for legislators only”: The N.C. Values Coalition is advocating a law that would allow business owners and civil magistrates to turn away gay couples based on their own religious views.
Elected officials and businesses in many parts of the country once denied service to African-Americans (and in other instances and eras to Jews, Catholics, etc.). They did this often out of a strong belief that the sexual “mixing of the races” or the acceptance of other belief systems was morally wrong. Many still hold those convictions.
Somehow our nation’s sense of fairness found those beliefs – ancient scriptural references to the contrary – to be shortsighted, and we opted for equal protection under the law, even if many banking, housing, law enforcement as well as business hiring and promotion policies continue to reflect residual racism, religious bigotry and bias.
While the N.C. Values Coalition sees itself as righteous defender against the attacks of an immoral enemy, it too often seems more obsessed with matters personal and sexual than with basic equality under the law.
Elected officials pushing to allow businesses and magistrates to refuse service to gay couples – even should the Supreme Court uphold gay marriage – are not naive when it comes to understanding just how politically convenient their actions are.
Joe Moran, Durham