Elton John—yes, the world-renowned pop star—rejected the proposed so-called Religious Freedom Restoration Act today in an opinion post, stating that the proposed legislation encourages discrimination under the guise of religious freedom.
He began by describing the organization he founded, the Elton John AIDS Foundation, to fight the stereotypes and stigma around AIDS, as well as provides support for those fighting AIDS.
John said that Georgia has come a long way through the years in terms of AIDS support, but there is still work to be done. The rates of AIDS among gay and transgender people of color and of low income remains disproportionately high.
Passing the proposed RFRA would be a step backward, neutralizing all past efforts made to accept gay and transgender Georgians.
In his Op-Ed, John starts by arguing that this bill is not even needed because religious freedom is already protected.
“Simply put, this bill is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It promises religious freedom, but let’s be clear: no one’s religious freedom is at risk! Both the Georgia Constitution and US Constitution very explicitly protect this right.
“I firmly believe in freedom of religion. Everyone has the right to worship as they choose. But I also believe in justice, equality and the rule of law. We can’t just let people refuse to follow a law because they don’t like it. And we can’t just grant special exemptions that allow people to discriminate at will.”
John encourages Georgians to exercise their freedom of speech and write to their legislators to fight Senate Bill 129 that has already passed in the Senate and now is making its way through the House.
All Georgians deserve a right to earn a living, live in a home and provide for their families no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity.
“No one should be discriminated against because of who he is, or what he looks like, or because of a disease he happens to have. We cannot afford to turn back the clock as we fight for an AIDS-free future in Georgia, across the country and around the world.”SHARE THIS STORY