Ryan Anderson: Georgia’s License To Discriminate Bill Actually Protects The Rights Of Minorities

Ryan Anderson writes for the Heritage Foundation:

Last Friday, the Georgia Senate passed a good bill that protects religious freedom in the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s redefinition of marriage. And already special interest groups and big businesses are trying to pressure the governor into refusing to sign the bill unless it is significantly watered down in the House.

This is yet another example of cultural cronyism. Businesses in Georgia were always free to embrace gay marriage—to bake wedding cakes for gay marriages and make floral arrangements for same-sex nuptials—and many do, but now they want the government to force everyone in Georgia to do the same.

And they’re threatening boycotts, travel bans, and relocations of businesses if the government doesn’t do as they wish. It’s Indiana all over again.

Big business, as represented by “individual corporate giants including Hilton Worldwide, Marriott and InterContinental Hotels Group”; the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce; and the Georgia Hotel & Lodging Association, have all spoken out against the religious freedom bill as opening the door to widespread discrimination.

The hypocrisy of big business lobbying against the law is astounding. They want to be free to operate in Georgia according to their values, but they don’t want small-business competitors to be free to operate according to theirs. If all of the major corporations are already in favor of gay marriage, then this religious freedom law poses no threat. It merely protects the rights of those who disagree.

And protecting minority rights after major social change is a hallmark of American tolerance and pluralism. Georgia should stand strong and defend these rights.