Some Mississippi businesses are sounding off against a bill signed into law to protect the religious freedom of the state's residents.
The Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act – which is to take effect July 1 – mirrors one passed on a federal level during the Clinton administration. It is designed, in part, to protect business owners who don't want to do work to promote homosexual activism. Upon signing the measure, Governor Phil Bryant expressed his hope that people realize it contains no element that the federal law doesn't have in it.
"It is the same discussion [that the] the government should not burden someone's religious freedom without a compelling interest," he stated. While the measure does not specifically mention "gays" or lesbians, homosexual activists have expressed concern that some people will interpret it as permission to "discriminate" against those whom they don't agree with or like.
In response to passage of that bill, owners who want the business of homosexuals are now posting blue, circular window stickers that incorporate the rainbow colors typically associated with homosexual activism.
Buddy Smith, executive vice president of Tupelo-based American Family Association, offers his take on the sticker campaign.
"It's not really a buying campaign, but it's a bully campaign," he says, "and it's being carried out by radical homosexual activists who intend to trample the freedom of Christians to live according to the dictates of scripture.
"They don't want to hear that homosexuality is sinful behavior – and they wish to silence Christians and the church who dare to believe this truth."
Smith offers a word of caution for those who do business with facilities posting the decal supporting homosexual activism. "If you do that, you are agreeing with these businesses that Christians no longer have the freedom to live out the dictates of their Christian faith and conscience," he tells OneNewsNow.
A website affiliated with the sticker campaign lists the Mississippi businesses that are participating. One of those listed is Jackson-based Milsaps College, which is connected with the United Methodist Church.
Editor's Note: The American Family Association is the parent organization of the American Family News Network, which operates OneNewsNow.com.