The following is a statement from State Representative James White blasting the proposed San Antonio, Texas Ordinance that is Hostile to Traditional Values and Free Speech:
Sept. 4, 2013
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Representative White Opposes Proposed San Antonio City Ordinance
Hostile to Traditional Values and Free Speech
The ongoing attack against religious liberty and free speech has once again come to Texas as the City of San Antonio is set to vote September 5 on a proposed "non-discrimination ordinance" expanding existing prohibitions against discrimination to business and government practices on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
"This proposed ordinance undermines religious free speech and targets Texans who hold a traditional understanding of human sexuality," said State Representative James White. He continued, "It's unfortunate that this is happening in San Antonio. This city has a history steeped in Faith, as its famous Mission Walk attests."
This policy violates not only the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution but also the Texas Constitution, which defines marriage as consisting of one man and one woman, and the prohibition in state law that "a government agency may not substantially burden a person’s free exercise of religion." Specifically, were this proposal to be enacted, it might actually promote discrimination instead of restrict it, especially against religious organizations and individuals.
Churches could be sued for refusing to lease their facilities to those with whom they theologically disagree. Business owners could become ineligible for city contracts if an employee is offended by the influence of their religious beliefs in their company. Elected officials could be removed from office if any kind of prejudice is perceived in the expression of personal views. "Just think, if approved, this ordinance could disqualify for elected office a Sunday School teacher who presents a Bible lesson on Leviticus," stated Representative White.
Representative White is all too familiar with this fight, having come to the defense of the Kountze High School cheerleaders last year when a Wisconsin-based atheist group sought legal action to stop their display of banners with Bible verses at football games. After several months in court, the cheerleaders prevailed, demonstrating that Texas still recognizes the constitutional rights of its citizens to exercise their religion and express their views freely.
"This is San Antonio, not San Francisco," said Representative White. "I am proud to stand with the vast majority of Texans who live in San Antonio and cherish the tried and true conservative values of Faith and Freedom."