Religious exemption myths

The National Center for Lesbian Rights’ Kate Kendell said, “This would be a catastrophic erosion of non-discrimination protections.” Activist John Becker wrote, “We must tell President Obama loud and clear: no special rights for religious bigotry!!!”

On her July 2 show, Rachel Maddow asserted the letter was just part of “the floodgates … already opening” from the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision. The genesis of the letter, she said, was about conservatives grabbing “every other conceivable advantage … by calling what they want to do that’s otherwise against the law a variety of religious freedom.” Supporters of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders — from Think Progress to Daily Kos — echoed the claim that the Hobby Lobby decision had ushered in Armageddon for gay rights.

But a few facts get in the way: