Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant To Appeal Federal Court Order Halting Anti-LGBT Law
Intensely homophobic Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant on Thursday filed a notice that he will be appealing the federal judge’s ruling that stopped implementation and enforcement of the state’s recently passed anti-LGBT religious exemption law House Bill 1523.
Bryant also filed papers Thursday asking the judge, U.S. District Court Judge Carlton Reeves, to put the preliminary injunction on hold during his appeal of the ruling.
The filings are signed by Bryant’s chief counsel, Drew Snyder, who entered a formal appearance as Bryant’s counsel on Thursday, after Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood, had said that his office was “inclined” to appeal the ruling. A spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment on whether Hood’s a absence on Thursday was evidence that he had reached a decision not to appeal.
Judge Carlton Reeves ruled the law not only violated the Fourteenth Amendment’s equal protection provisions but also the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.
Below are the best lines from Judge Reeve’s ruling.
*In physics, every action has its equal and opposite reaction. In politics, every action has its predictable overreaction. Politicians reacted to the Hawaiian proceedings with DOMA and mini-DOMAs. Lawrence and Goodridge birthed the state constitutional amendments. And now Obergefell has led to HB 1523. The next chapter of this back-and-forth has begun.
*Nothing in the plaintiffs’ briefs, oral argument, or testimony indicates that they expect a favorable ruling to change the hearts and minds of Mississippians opposed to same-sex marriage, transgender equality, or sex before marriage. They simply ask the Court to enjoin the enforcement of a state law that both permits arbitrary discrimination based on those characteristics and endorses the majority’s favored religious beliefs.
*The title, text, and history of HB 1523 indicate that the bill was the State’s attempt to put LGBT citizens back in their place after Obergefell. The majority of Mississippians were granted special rights to not serve LGBT citizens, and were immunized from the consequences of their actions. LGBT Mississippians, in turn, were “put in a solitary class with respect to transactions and relations in both the private and governmental spheres” to symbolize their second-class status
Finally, religious freedom has its limits — when it harms others:
*The critical lesson is that religious accommodations must be considered in the context of their impact on others.
Thank you Judge Reeves. Fuck you Governor Bryant.