In the wake of the Supreme Court ruling legalizing same sex unions, Congress is scrambling to protect the First Amendment Right to freely practice Religion in the United States. Already the Republican Party has put forth a bill which would allow a business to deny service to same sex individuals or couples, based on Religious Beliefs, and the Government could not remove that entity’s tax-exempt status. However, many on Capitol Hill see this as a bigger example of what happened recently in Indiana when the state allowed for businesses to deny business based on Religion (albeit not necessarily based on the sexual orientation of a potential customer, just simply based on the Religious Beliefs of the business owner).
The protection of the First Amendment Right to freely practice Religion as one – be it an individual or a business – sees fit is a step in the right direction. The First Amendment, by its very nature, has provided tax-exempt status to religious organizations in order to not make any show of supporting one religion over another. But if that same Government were to remove an organization’s tax exempt status for not following a Supreme Court ruling that they are morally opposed to, or for denying business to any individual based on religious grounds, then that Government is actively denying the Religious Freedom the First Amendment was written to protect.
The Government exists to protect the Rights of the People. They have been elected by their electorate to represent all of America and pass laws which have the most successful impact on the population as a whole. It is up to that Government to ensure that the People that elected it are properly protected, especially when it comes to the Fundamental Rights outlined in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Regardless of one’s personal perspective on a particular issue, all Americans have the same Rights to Freedom of Religion, and that Right must be protected through the passage of laws which guarantee the Freedom for all generations.