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Thursday, June 26, 2014

Ind. Law - "Indiana same-sex marriage fight not over yet"

Tony Cook and Barb Berggoetz of the Indianapolis Star report today on how:

... the fight at the Statehouse could shift to legislation intended to protect business owners and churches who deny services to same-sex couples on religious grounds.

That doesn't mean social conservatives will drop the push for a constitutional amendment. But it does suggest some of their energy will likely be diverted to issues such as religious discrimination and free speech. * * *

State lawmakers briefly entertained a proposal earlier this year would have allowed religious schools and colleges that receive state contracts to make employment decisions based on religion. That measure was slipped into an unrelated bill, but later nixed amid public outcry.

A year earlier, an Indianapolis bakery drew a firestorm of social media controversy after the owner refused to bake a cake for a gay couple on religious grounds.

And in 2010, a cookie shop at City Market faced the possibility of sanctions after its owner refused to fulfill a gay student group's request for rainbow-iced cookies. The incident prompted hundreds to protest at the city-owned market and Just Cookies later reached an agreement with the city's equal opportunity office requiring the bakery to post a "no special orders" policy.

The debate over the role religion should be allowed to play in business decisions has flared up across the nation, too.

In Arizona, the governor vetoed a measure that would allow businesses with strongly held religious beliefs to deny service to gays and lesbians, and two cases are pending before the U.S. Supreme Court in which religious business owners want their companies to be exempt from providing employee insurance coverage for contraception.

ILB: The two cases are Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wagon, which are expected be decided Monday by the SCOTUS.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on June 26, 2014 10:39 AM
Posted to Indiana Law