Arizona’s Shameful ‘Right to Discriminate’ Bill

Matthew C. Whitaker, CNN, February 22, 2014

Arizona set itself up for yet another self-inflicted political wound, international humiliation, costly boycotts and historical shame now that its legislature has passed a bill giving people the right to discriminate.

The bill was written by the Center for Arizona Policy and a Christian legal organization called the Alliance Defending Freedom. They were inspired, in part, by the case of a New Mexico wedding photographer who was taken to court after refusing to shoot a gay commitment ceremony. The bill seeks to shield Christians from members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community who dare to seek equal protection under the law.

Specifically, the bill protects all individuals, businesses and religious institutions from discrimination lawsuits if they can show that their discriminatory actions were motivated by religious convictions.

Under the guise of religious freedom, however, the bill would enable businesses potentially to discriminate against virtually anyone–not just Jews, Muslims, Sikhs, agnostics and atheists, but also unwed mothers, Rastafarians and Budweiser T-shirt wearers. This bill is arbitrary, capricious and antithetical to the spirit of brotherhood and sisterhood that inform our documents of freedom.

It will lead to marginalization and oppression by allowing bigots to deny gay people access to virtually any business or service. The road to Indian genocide, Jim Crow, Japanese-American internment, the Holocaust and other iterations of human persecution began with laws that isolated and dehumanized entire groups of people.


Nevertheless, Arizona now has the dubious designation as the first state to pass an anti-gay bill that seeks to shun and segregate in the name of religion.

Similar legislation has been put forward in Idaho, Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Tennessee. The Arizona measure is the only bill that has passed.


The bill passed Thursday, Gov. Jan Brewer has five days to reject it or sign it into law.

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  • Triarius

    Makes me happier by the day I recently moved to AZ for work. The fact that it is 75 degrees outside right now and probably the highest concentration of beautiful women and minimal blacks doesn’t hurt either.

    • Viv J

      I have my eye on Arizona as a place where I’d possibly like to live. Right now it’s just a fantasy though.

      • AndrewInterrupted

        They aren’t doing very well holding back the locust swarm from the south. All the news out of the southwest sounds like 2 steps forward, 3 steps back.

        • Triarius

          Depends where you live. Plenty of white towns and neighborhoods. I see Mexicans here and there, but this is not So Cal or San Antonio. Lesser of the evils in the Southwest, imo.

          • AndrewInterrupted

            That must be why pro-America laws actually make some headway in AZ, because there are still big enough pockets of Americans.

            But, as one poster here points out, all Chicago “Hive” has to do is defer to an AA appointed (drone) judge to smack them all down.

            “…Thems Chicago folks don’t do American very well…”

      • Triarius

        I have been planning this for five years. Even researching the areas and corporations before grad school. In August, I made it a reality. Best choice I ever made in my life, no joke. Plan it out, make sure you have a backup. Any questions, just ask.

      • If I was going to move there, I would want Flagstaff.

        • Viv J

          Exactly the town I have in mind. Love it there.

          • Brian

            The question on my mind is whether Winslow is still such a fine sight to see.

          • SFLBIB

            I’ve lived in N. AZ for twelve years, and one thing you have to be ready for is limited shopping unless you are near a large city. The internet makes up for some of this, but the cost of shipping is high.

            You have to be more self-reliant also. Shortly after moving here, I wanted to update my car’s radio. There are no auto stereo places around here, so I had to do it myself. Of course, some people consider self-reliance a plus.

        • AndrewInterrupted

          Whenever I traveled to the southwest I remember the first adjustment I had to make was seeing all the well preserved 40 year old cars and trucks puttering around.

    • John K

      If I had to leave Texas, I’d go to Arizona.

  • Sharps Rifle

    It’s called “Freedom of Association,” and is what true freedom is. If I don’t wish to do business with someone, for whatever reason, it only hurts me in that I don’t get that person’s money for my services or product. My refusal to do business with someone does NOT harm the person seeking to do business with me.

    On a personal level, if Brewer signs this bill into law, I will make sure I do more business in Arizona.

    • Alexandra1973

      If gays, blacks, and the like boycott Arizona, so much the better!

      • Anglokraut

        If only the Mexicans would boycott being here; I’d love to find work again.

        • Alexandra1973

          That too!

          If it wasn’t so hot, I might just move there in that case!

          • Triarius

            It’s really not that bad. 105 with no humidity is better than 90 with 95% humidity, I guarantee it. Also, I have had my windows open since October, haven’t used heat or A/C in 5 months and counting.

        • Triarius

          What do you do for a living?

          • AndrewInterrupted

            I’m in automation field service and semiconductors. I’ve been to some of those mega-fabs in the desert. They don’t like white people in those places, though. They don’t even have enough white people left to form an ‘Affinity Group’. Not that white people would be allowed to form an ‘Affinity Group’, mind you.

          • Anglokraut

            I’ve been unemployed for almost a year now. I just went job scrounging this morning, but got a lot of run-around when I would inquire about positions. Arizona is not the place to be if you aren’t into high-tech or medicine. Since the construction industry collapsed and took with it the state’s main source of economic growth, this place has been moribund. I’m almost glad my family lost our house to foreclosure, because we’re planning to leave for the Pacific Northwest.

      • AndrewInterrupted

        Yes, that’s the upside, the promise of a boycott.
        “…Yes, please. Boycott. Please do…”

  • I’m sorry, you foolish brainwashed Americans, but your Marxist masters don’t care about you and your basic human rights flowing from natural law. The Marxists are destroyers. Their goal is to destroy the traditional family, decency, and traditional Christianity so they can complete their totalitarian takeover of a once great country. Not only will I not bow down to our Marxist masters, I repeatedly am going to scream “SCREW YOU” in their faces at every opportunity. So, screw you to anyone opposing the right to freedom of association.

  • Alexandra1973

    Mr. Whitaker, the author of this, is black. Go figure.

  • dd121

    The marxist theory is that any business that engages in “public accommodation” is required to forfeit their constitutional right of freedom of association. We should all push back.

  • Anglokraut

    I’ve lived in Arizona for a while, and our Governor is pretty good at walking the line. She’ll probably veto, but as she does with most vetoes, she sends the bill back with a list of reasons why she vetoed. Usually she just wants ambiguous language clarified.

    • Kenner

      This bill may be an overreach. Asking someone to participate in a gay wedding, like the photographer, is one thing, refusing service to someone in a store is another.

  • thomas edward

    Arizona’s Shameful ‘Right to Discriminate’ Bill, CNN
    Quite a “news” agency…

    • Alexandra1973

      The spin is making me rather dizzy.

    • Kenner

      They’re sinking fast…I turned them on a few days ago to check on the Ukraine, and after a two minute blurb, Cooper said, ‘We’ll get back to that shortly’, and switched to a panel ‘discussion’, yet again, of the two-week old Michael Dunn case!

    • SFLBIB

      I noticed that too.


    * We must accept their lifestyle and not persecute them.

    * If we don’t bake wedding cakes for their gay “marriage” ceremonies, then we must suffer official state sanction and persecution.

    * Any attempts to protect wedding cake businesses from this kind of state sanction is in true Kafkaesque fashion called -ism and -phobia.

    If you think this sounds familiar, you’re right. We see the same thing, the same kind of contradictory Kafkaesque double standards, play out in racial matters.

    • Petronius

      To the Liberal mind, his or her support for gay marriage is based on (or more precisely, from an outsider’s point of view, is seen to be justified by) abstract principles of equality, social justice, civil rights, reform of imperfect institutions, humma, humma, principles on which all people of good faith must certainly agree, blah, blah.

      The unstated inference here is that those who do not cherish the abstract principles of equality, etc., are either ignorant and stupid, or malicious, i.e., dangerous people of bad faith — homophobes, racists, bigots, et al. Yes, we’ve heard it all before.

      It would never seem to occur to the Liberal that he or she is out of touch with reality, that his assault on traditional marriage and Christian doctrine is inconsistent with both our freedom and long practical experience (the biological sciences, sexual reproduction, the possibility of a people’s history and future, the family as foundation for future generations, protection of children, etc.). For the Liberal, abstract principles will always trump reality.

      But I feel in my bones that this explanation is too charitable, that in fact Marxist-Liberalism is an ideology of destruction, and that its adherents don’t give two hoots about either their avowed principles or reality. As always, it’s all about their power and our destruction.

      • SFLBIB

        William F. Buckley once said, “Liberals claim they want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other views.”

  • Fighting_Northern_Spirit

    I haven’t seen the media get their knickers in such a twist over a common-sense issue for a long time. I would love to see the American people rise up and deal the Gay Fascists a humiliating defeat, just on principle.

    • Kenner

      ‘Duck Dynasty’, remember?

      • Fighting_Northern_Spirit

        Okay, another humiliating defeat. 🙂

    • Ron Cheaters

      Ah yes, principle.
      Its the reason my family celebrates all the hallmark occasions the day after.. so that we can purchase the sweets at their true costs and thumb our noses at all the hype. It is after all, just a day.

  • MekongDelta69

    There are people who are nothing but ‘professional offendees‘ They are the ‘perpetually oppressed, forever discriminated against (in their own minds)’, whining little babies of the left. The will look under every bed; look in every closet; turn over every rug – until they find a ‘racist,’ ‘sexist,’ ‘homophobe,’ ‘bigot’ – ANYBODY on whom they can blame their OWN troubles and failures in life.

    Blacks, browns, gays, feminazis, eco-wackos, animal rights lunatics, America haters, Military haters, capitalism haters, traditional values haters – you name it – the left has it. They’ve been whining since 1965.

    And they are enabled and encouraged by self-loathing, guilt-ridden, spineless white leftists.

    The rest of us don’t care what your problems are. We have our own.
    Go cry to your black, muslim marxist dictator and his regime…

    • Not only that, leftists of all stripes need paranoia like living organisms need oxygen and water. The real or perceived possibility of being persecuted is what keeps the weirdo Star Wars bar scene Democrat-left coalition together. (And greases the skids for fund raising.) I have found that leftists of all types are bad about the paranoia of a persecution complex, but the two groups that are the worst about this sort of thing are LGBTQMIAPD, and leftist Jews.

      • Kenner

        35 gay organizations, basically all of them, signed onto the petition for Holder to continue to prosecute Zimmerman, post-verdict.
        I didn’t get it, until one blog pointed out the surnames of the ‘leaders’.
        Sadly, the usual suspects.

    • I am a racist, sexist, homopath and bigot. I am also a felon and recovering orc. I like vegetable gardening, woodworking, and I tie fishing flies and make fishing lures. I used to receive hate mail – lots and lots of it – and once replied to someone who said h/sh/it was pretending to be “offended”, “Good if you’re offended! Good! F*** you!”

      This is our country, and we can say and write what we like here.

      • Katherine McChesney

        Glad to know you, you racist, sexist, homopath and bigot. Carry on. You are the most interesting person on Amren.

    • Pro_Whitey

      I would love to see the homos and the moo-slimes intersect on this issue. My guess is that the homos would back off quietly lest they be beheaded.

    • SFLBIB

      In the military, we used to say, “Go have the chaplain punch your T.S. card.”

  • Extropico

    “The road to Indian genocide, Jim Crow, Japanese-American internment, the Holocaust and other iterations of human persecution began with laws that isolated and dehumanized entire groups of people.”

    So the Immigration Act of 1965 and the “Civil Rights” laws that discriminate against Whites should be repealed as it is genociding Whites, right…

  • Luca

    I can’t find the precise wording in the Bill but if the authors are smart they would aim at protecting a proprietor’s right not to carry certain products or services, as opposed to refusing service to a particular group of people.

    Whether a customer is gay or straight you could tell them you don’t provide gay wedding cakes. Likewise, if a gay or straight customer comes into the bakery and orders donuts, there should be no problem serving them.

    Knowing politicians, they screwed it up.

  • Spartacus

    Is there any way someone from Europe can support this ? Any particular product I should buy ?

    • Anglokraut

      I live in Arizona, and I’d be happy to sell to you a box of pure Arizona sunshine!

      Cost $300 US.

  • Winston_Jack

    Hate to rain on your parades, but even if the bill makes it
    through into law it is not bound to last.

    Don’t forget that the mullato messiah rules by legislative writ and
    judicial fiat. Any time soon after, some Supreme Court activist
    judge will step in and have the law declared “unconstitutional” before striking
    it down. Isn’t this what happened when Arizona tried to protect its borders?

    • AndrewInterrupted

      “…It’s good to be king…”

    • Even if it doesn’t last, it’ll irritate the feds.

  • So CAL Snowman

    The freedom to say NO, is the most important and fundamental freedom there is.

    • willbest

      That freedom died in the 1860s

  • AndrewInterrupted

    Their Gaystapo are especially vicious.
    Here is one they caught.

    • AutomaticSlim

      Check it out.
      George “The Animal” Steel grew hair!

      • AndrewInterrupted


      • Ron Cheaters

        No doubt she likes to eat the stuffing out of corner-buckle’s either. I you know what I mean.

    • Who Me?

      What the heck IS that? Besides being 150 lbs overweight. Animal, vegetable or mineral? Male or female? Species? It looks like it bites. Check it for rabies.

      • AndrewInterrupted

        That IS Diversity GOLD. Munnehh…Mo Munnehh

        That is an Affirmative Action Diversity Darling who would be hired in a heartbeat to torture the federal contractor workforce. Those with ‘alternative lifestyles’ are a hot commodity among the social engineering set. Their propensity for domestic terrorism is an unfortunate byproduct, but the social engineers on the 4th floor generally can’t see any of the mess.

        “…Can’t see it from my office…”

      • Katherine McChesney

        It also looks like it smells bad.

        • AndrewInterrupted

          The politically correct term is ‘…Diversity Potpourri…’
          And you will learn to like it (if you know what’s good for you).

        • It also looks like some vicious people graffitied it, doubtless while holding their noses.

  • John K

    Says the Communist News Network….

    This is exactly what every state should be doing. The homosexuals have been pushing us for far too long, now it’s time we pushed back. Same goes for the “minorities”.

  • LACountyRedneck

    “We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.”

    • IstvanIN

      I would agree, a private business should be allowed to do business, or not do business, with whomever they chose.

      The government, and public utilities, should have to treat everyone the same, one set of laws for all.

      No one should be allowed to mistreat or harass anyone for any reason and leave it at that.

      • TXCriollo

        Ya well that is never the case any conservative group is shut down no big deal private or public

        • IstvanIN

          And that is wrong is well, such as the AMREN conferences. Perhaps we are not as evolved as we think.

  • willbest

    I don’t see how this is different from the Muslim cab drivers that are allowed to refuse to transport people carrying alcohol or dogs. Since the left is all cool with that, this shouldn’t be an issue for them.

  • RyanP

    It drives me crazy when they say this is about religious freedom. It is just about plain old freedom. Whether it is a Christian who doesn’t want to serve gays for religious reasons or an atheist who just doesn’t feel like it for whatever reason, they are both the same thing. When you argue this as a religious right you are suggesting that one group gets special rights to discriminate. There should be no “special” rights for anyone.

  • TXCriollo

    I’m on cnn tearing these people a new one on business rights everyone help me out support my post. Fighting these left wing jackwagons is hard

    • AndrewInterrupted

      Your post only last 10 seconds before it gets buried by spammers.

      Good grief, it’s up to 20,000 posts over there…!!!

  • IstvanIN

    I disagree with singling out a particular group for legal discrimination, and I disagree with allowing discrimination only for religious reasons. A private business should be allowed to do business with whomever they wish for whatever reason they want, or for no reason at all. There should be no harassment, attacks or name calling, a simple “I am sorry we don’t provide that service” should suffice.

    The government should have to treat everyone equally, one set of laws for all, no official discrimination and no “affirmative” action. That would also apply to public utilities.

    Additionally, businesses traditionally specialize, Lane Bryant and Abercrombie and Fitch obviously deal with very different markets and should not be forced to do business with the other’s customer base. I don’t think there is a need to be hateful on the one hand or intrusive on the other, live and let live.

    Diversity can be tiring, I’ll admit that.

    • Kenner

      Common sense. Live and let live, just a distant memory on the left.

    • AndrewInterrupted

      What will happen is the business equivalent of ‘white flight’.
      They will get out of the business.

  • libertarian1234

    “Under the guise of religious freedom, however, the bill would enable businesses potentially to discriminate against virtually anyone–”

    And what is wrong with that, you CNN egghead?

    Forcing someone to cater to people he finds disgusting and does things that are contrary to his religion doesn’t seem to bother this totalitarian geek. He’s perfectly willing to infringe on another person’s right to engage with whomever he pleases, but he thinks people who have mental disorders have a right to force anyone and everyone to adhere to their wishes.

    The government has no business telling private enterprise who it can and cannot serve, and if they had put this issue up on a referendum for the public to vote on the people would have voted it down overwhelmingly, just as they would have voted down the greater part of the community organizer’s agenda.

    I see where Eric “my people” Holder has ordered AG’s not to defend their laws against homosexual marriage in court. This black twerp and his community organizer are trying to rule by decree and the spineless Republicans are allowing illegal, unconstitutional acts to carry on without challenge, and the equally fearful conservative pundits are saying, “You can’t impeach the first black president.”

    Even for things so blatantly illegal?

    The deterioration continues.

  • Anglo

    Personally, I just want to go back to segregation — Whites Only. Racial integration exists only because it’s forced. Without the civil rights laws, most White people would naturally and immediately return to segregation by choice. Diversity has ruined White communities and public education (to name a few). Whites have a right to exist as a separate people and to preserve their heritage. I hope this Arizona bill allowing private businesses to not serve homosexuals if it’s against their religious beliefs is the beginning of the nullification the Civil Rights Act of 1964. I can hope.

  • Ron Cheaters

    No different than “no shirt, no shoes, no service” in my books.
    You respect my rights and I’m obliged to respect yours.
    If you don’t like it and want to be in my face about it – then I should have the right not to serve you. Period.

  • WR_the_realist

    In a free country you should have a right to discriminate. Arizona is looking more and more like the last sane state in America. No wonder the left hates that state.

  • A Freespeechzone

    Gays and the minority sexual deviates will ALWAYS have the right to discriminate, harass, terrorize and even sue Christians, Conservatives and anyone who opposes their agenda.

    The current administration, courts and the media support this agenda and will stop at nothing to destroy Christians—don’t forget that we are seen as terrorists.

    Are YOU going to allow this attack on our values and faith stand? I won’t.

  • DailyKenn

    I notice that multiculturalism excludes traditional Southern culture.
    Isn’t that discrimination?

  • Puggg

    After reading all this today, here on AmRen and elsewhere in the regular media and our kind of media, it should be plain as the ugly on my face that the gay agenda has gone way past ending government persecution of gays, and even though that at one time that’s what they said that’s all they wanted, they knew that they were going to go way further if they got a chance.

    Now what they want is to use government power, people in the same line of work as I am, to force people to accept them, or else, and to force people whose businesses are not vital public accommodations. I heard today that Muslim cab drivers in Minneapolis won’t pick up fares with alcohol or dogs. The difference is that taxi cab service is a vital public occasion. I’m sure in any big city there are lots and lots of people in the wedding cake baking business, and many of those will serve gays.

  • Lagerstrom

    “This bill is arbitrary, capricious and antithetical to the spirit of
    brotherhood and sisterhood that inform our documents of freedom.”

    Brotherhood and sisterhood? What sort of drugs is this nutcase taking and how did he get a job?

    • paul marchand

      We aint “brothers” even tho footing the flipping bills.

    • PvtCharlieSlate

      He filled a quota.
      It was his only qualification.

  • John

    My comments on CNN’s website are as follows: “”We the people….”, the first 3 words of the Declaration of
    Independence as a reminder, have in every instance rejected the gay
    agenda and all its trimmings. Yet “We the people…” are basically
    ignored by CNN, the MSM in general, the Feds and the courts system. You,
    CNN and the reporter that has the audacity to write as slanted a story
    as this under the guise of “freedom of speech” are not “We the
    people…”. Nor are any of the other MSM outlets, the Feds, the courts
    or the entire crew of liberal whackos that are helping to fan the flames
    of this agenda. A word of advice, “We the people…” are fed up with
    your BS and a day of reckoning will soon be at hand. Operation American
    Spring; 5/14/2014.”

  • exlib93

    The libs are so expert at making up manipulative euphemisms for many of their wacky policies throughout the decades, if they were named for what they actually stood for, perhaps they never would have even passed. CNN brazenly calls this the ‘Right to Discriminate’ law. You’d never hear them call any of the left’s policies named ‘______ whitey’ law? (fill in the blank for the description of outcome of each of the many laws that ruin the quality of life for productive white people).

  • Tarczan

    Unless it is a public utility a private business should have the right to refuse service for anyone. This is what I think Jared Taylor advocates, and it makes sense to me. These people want to use the power of the government to force someone to bake a cake.

    This is what we should hope for- freedom of association.

  • Marc Zuckurburg

    You may not think it to look at me, but I have an incredible sense of empathy.

    In this case, I feel for the gays. After all, people that bake cakes are involved in a vast conspiracy to oppress them. Just like people with hardly any money and hardly any power are conspiring against us billionaires to rob us of our birth right of comprehensive immigration reform.

    Nevertheless, we will endure.

    • AndrewInterrupted

      I was always suspicious of cake bakers…hmmmm

  • A couple of loose ends on this story before it becomes old news, and it will be old news as soon as Jan Brewer vetoes this bill. The only reason she has not yet is that she and her advisers are trying to cook up some tehnocratic legalistic meely mouthed middle of the road don’t offend anyone rationale to veto it.

    1. The side advocating this bill has done a bad job in terms of PR. The anti side has done a pretty good job making themselves out to be victims. The pro side should do the same. We might not like victimology in the abstract, but politically, it works.

    2. Then there’s the issue of peaceful co-existence. The old saw during the days of the Soviet Union is that we could peacefully co-exist with them but they couldn’t peacefully co-exist with us. And you see the same dynamic at work. We can live in amicable and tolerant co-existence with LGBTQMIAPDLOLPLPLTH, but they, in terms of their official organizations, pressure groups and lobbies, cannot live in amicable and tolerant co-existence with us. Nobody on our side wants to send armies of raiding cops into bedrooms to pull apart consenting adults Adam and Steve. The other side does want to send in armies of raiding cops to make people bake cakes for their pretend marriage ceremonies or punish those that won’t.

    • Katherine McChesney

      Interesting isn’t it that the two NFL players who ‘came out’ are black homosexuals? Or is it called “down low”?

    • AndrewInterrupted

      Yes, the Right is still struggling with how far to stoop. Ask them to masquerade as the more convincing false victim and they say: “Huh?”

      The just don’t GET the-race-to-the-bottom. They don’t have the DNA or the conditioning to understand that to win a race to the bottom you have to think dirty like them–then dirtier.

      The Right keeps trying to raise them to their level. It’s never going to happen.

  • paul marchand

    and where the FEDS are engaged in this type of FORCE, and being they have CONSISTENTLY been engaged thereof, and have done all the destructive things that the US fed govt has done, perhaps it is time for DISMANTLING.

  • paul marchand

    Why are my sensible and adequately polite comments deleted by Amren?

  • Katherine McChesney

    I doubt any other woman would have him. He is a nerd personified. His first wife left him. Linda Ronstadt left him. He’s just married the only women who would have him. That and his money. I believe she is probably an Affirmative Action hire at some liberal corporation.

  • William_JD

    Under the guise of religious freedom, however, the bill would enable businesses potentially to discriminate against virtually anyone–not just Jews, Muslims, Sikhs, agnostics and atheists, but also unwed mothers, Rastafarians and Budweiser T-shirt wearers. This bill is arbitrary, capricious and antithetical to the spirit of brotherhood and sisterhood that inform our documents of freedom.
    What’s next? Repealing rape laws? Because a rape law is nothing more than a law that gives women the right to discriminate.