Thursday, February 27, 2014

SB 1062 in AZ.

I read the text. I understand that the "optics" are bad with this bill, but it's well-written. Which is not to say I agree with it; I don't have a strong opinion. I can say that the definitions are clear, and the intent is also clear. The main thing it does, or so it appears, is equal out the burden of proof in a religious liberty case. The religious practitioner must show that being compelled to take a certain action violates his religious convictions. It cannot simply be asserted. On the other hand, the government must show a compelling interest to override, or "burden," an individual's free exercise.

I can see why certain activists are angry about it; it broadly defines who may make a claim under Arizona's Religious Freedom Restoration Act. (Or, who could "qualify.") Unlike the HHS mandate, religious businesses, churches, individuals, etc. may all make a claim under the Act. They must prove their rights were or would be violated, but there will be no need to request exemptions, if this emendation is enacted into law.

Personally, I don't see what the fuss is about.

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