The SB 2681, "Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act," http://billstatus.ls.state.ms.us/2014/PDF/history/SB/SB2681.xml bill was signed by conservative Republican Governor Phil Bryant, and although he still maintains that the bill does not open doors to potential discrimination, he invited religious leaders, and anti-gay leader Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council to a private bill signing ceremony for the Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act. The bill went into effect on July 1, 2014.
Like similar bills in Kansas and Arizona, this bill essentially legalizes segregation and discrimination on the basis of religion. It would allow businesses to deny goods or services to any LGBTQ people and any other person they decide their religious beliefs do not approve of.
SB 2681, Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act, requires that “state action shall not burden a person’s right to the exercise of religion” by compelling “any action contrary to a person’s exercise of religion.” The bill defines “exercise of religion” to mean “the ability to act in a manner that is substantially motivated by one’s sincerely held religious belief, whether or not the exercise is compulsory or central to a larger system of religious belief.”
This means that a business could legally discriminate against people if it claims that such discrimination is motivated by their “sincerely held religious belief.” This bill legitimizes discrimination and segregation in Mississippi state law.
The bill would also amended the state seal to include “In God We Trust.”
This petition is aimed at anyone who believes in the importance of this issue, to LGBTQ and other residents of the state of Mississippi, as well as those everywhere who care about the separation of church and state.