Indiana is under fire for the Religious Freedom Restoration Act
Critics say it discriminates against the LGBT community
Gov. Mike Pence unleashed a firestorm on Indiana last week when he signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
Critics of the law contend it could be used by individuals and businesses to discriminate – particularly against the LGBT community of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals – on the basis of religion.
The ramifications for the Hoosier State are just starting to be felt in the form of boycotts, petitions and travel bans.
As the controversy mushrooms, here’s what got us to where we are. And where things are headed.
The act is signed
Last week, Pence put his signature on the RFRA – a law that allows Indiana businesses to cite their religious freedom as a legal defense.
The law states that the government can’t “substantially burden a person’s exercise of religion” and that individuals who feel like their religious beliefs have been or could be “substantially burdened” can lean on this law to fend off lawsuits.
In an opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal, Pence says the RFRA “ensures that Indiana law will respect religious freedom and apply the highest level of scrutiny to any state or local governmental action that infringes on people’s religious liberty.”