Mississippi’s Governor Phil Bryant has had another attack of Convenient Religious Belief just in time to ask a judge to reinstate House Bill 1523. This bill was blocked in July just hours before it was set to go into effect by U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves.
HB1523 was Mississippi’s response to the legalization of gay marriage. A quick refresher below, for more detail click here:
The State of Mississippi passed the most sweeping “Religious Freedom Law” ever seen in the history of ever earlier this year. It contained three major “sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions”:
- Marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman
- Sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage (Make sure you catch this! Two plaintiffs were an unmarried heterosexual couple.)
- 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 then goes on to protect anyone from discrimination who acts in accordance with those beliefs.
Because the state’s Democratic Attorney General, Jim Hood, refused to appeal Judge Reeves’ ruling, Bryant’s appeal is being managed by private attorneys, including some from the organization that was responsible for writing the law, Alliance Defending Freedom.
Judge Reeves only prevented the bill from going into effect. He did not overturn it; the only way to do that is for the legislature to fully repeal it.
The State was so specific with the law, it basically attempted to enact Southern Baptist Doctrine into law. While the almighty, self-righteous Governor Phil is fighting to protect the delicate sensibilities of the good citizens of Mississippi from the evils of gay marriage and people having sex out of wedlock, he’s pulling double duty as one of Donald Trump’s biggest supporters.
Bryant’s relationship to Trump, by all accounts, is a close one. Republican political consultants in the state say Bryant has single-handedly raised close to $2 million for the Trump campaign.
Bryant has visited Trump’s New York office at least twice in the past three months, and the governor has campaigned for Trump numerous times in Mississippi and once in Louisiana. Trump has visited Mississippi twice since announcing his candidacy – once for a Madison rally and once for a Jackson rally and fundraiser. (Source)
Apparently Phil doesn’t have a problem with a white man who has likely broken every second single one of the Ten Commandments. After the hot mic recording surfaced, Phil was perfectly content that his friend Donald apologized; the fact that he was bragging about sexual assault and that he and the woman were both already married was simply not a big deal. Phil’s support never wavered for even a moment.
The governor of Mississippi is definitely sending out mixed signals about his sincerely held religious convictions. The rules are not applied equally, for certain. Evangelicals who support Trump have lost all credibility; it has been discussed and written about by many during this election cycle. Shouldn’t that make it much more difficult for him to argue his religious convictions compel him to do anything? Hopefully the judge asks him that question.