GMA: Mississippi’s ‘So-Called’ Religious Freedom Law ‘Endorses Bigotry’

On Friday, ABC’s Good Morning America could not contain its disgust over the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals upholding a Mississippi religious freedom law that protects business owners with religious objections from being forced to participate in gay weddings, among other provisions.

Correspondent David Wright sneered that “the so-called religious objections law...would allow people in that state to deny services to same-sex couples on religious grounds.” However, he reassured liberal viewers that “representatives of the LGBT community say they’re not giving up.”

The reporter declared: “Supporters of the measure say it protects the beliefs of people who insist marriage is between a man and a woman, and who believe a person’s gender is determined at birth....But opponents say the Mississippi law endorses bigotry, pure and simple.”

Beyond the obvious nasty smear of claiming the law “endorses bigotry,” notice how Wright dismissed people who “believe” that “a person’s gender is determined at birth.” That’s not a belief, it’s a SCIENTIFIC FACT. A real journalist would have been able to figure that out.

<<< Please support MRC's NewsBusters team with a tax-deductible contribution today. >>>

After the slanted report, openly gay co-host Robin Roberts put aside any pretense of objectivity in favor of blatant activism:

I often say I love my home state. You know, I was just there this past weekend. There are a lot of good people, great people in the state of Mississippi....The LGBT community is not looking for special treatment. They’re not looking for special rights. It’s about equal rights, civil rights, human rights. That’s what it’s all about.

Wright agreed: “Absolutely.”

Roberts complained: “But this wasn’t voted on by the people, this was a [state] house bill that was signed by the governor.” Fun fact, that’s actually what a representative democracy looks like.

The biased segment was brought to viewers by Advil, IHOP, and Ford. 

Here is a full transcript of the June 23 segment:

7:14 AM ET

ROBIN ROBERTS: Now to a major court decision in Mississippi saying businesses and government employees can deny services to LGBT couples because of religious objections. ABC’s David Wright is here, has the details for us. Good morning, David.

DAVID WRIGHT: Good morning, Robin. The Fifth Circuit’s decision means Mississippi could soon begin enforcing the so-called religious objections law, which would allow people in that state to deny services to same-sex couples on religious grounds. But representatives of the LGBT community say they’re not giving up.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: Appeals Court Upholds “Religious Freedom” Law; Allows Service to be Denied to LGBT Couples]

Even though the U.S. Supreme Court says same-sex couples have a constitutionally guaranteed right to get married, Mississippi’s law says people who disagree have a right to refuse to serve them.

RENICK TAYLOR [PLAINTIFF]: I’m afraid this is going to be yet another excuse to hate. My wedding is July 4th and it throws it all into question.

WRIGHT: This ruling, reminiscent of Indiana’s controversial religious freedom bill, which then- Governor Mike Pence signed into law. That law allowed business owners to discriminate based on sexual orientation. The owners of this pizza place in Walkerton, Indiana, refused to cater a gay wedding.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN [MEMORIES PIZZA]: I do not think it is targeting gays personally – I don’t think it's discrimination.

WRIGHT: Mississippi’s law, House Bill 1523, passed at the state house after the Supreme Court issued its ruling on same-sex marriage, but was never allowed to take effect. Supporters of the measure say it protects the beliefs of people who insist marriage is between a man and a woman, and who believe a person’s gender is determined at birth.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Simply all we’re trying to do is say that people of faith have some protection from an overbearing government.

WRIGHT: But opponents say the Mississippi law endorses bigotry, pure and simple.

Well, opponents of the law have several other avenues of appeal open to them. They plan to appeal immediately. There’s also hope that maybe the legislature could change the law. That’s what happened in Indiana –

ROBERTS: In Indiana.

WRIGHT: Exactly, where Governor Pence signed into law some changes designed to address the LGBT community’s concerns.

ROBERTS: I often say I love my home state. You know, I was just there this past weekend. There are a lot of good people, great people in the state of Mississippi. Where I went to high school, my family has lived there since 1969, my parents are buried in the national cemetery in Biloxi because my father served in the military in three wars.

The LGBT community is not looking for special treatment. They’re not looking for special rights. It’s about equal rights, civil rights, human rights.

WRIGHT: Absolutely.

ROBERTS: That’s what it’s all about.

DAVID MUIR: You have a lot of love for your home state.

ROBERTS: I do, I do. But this is something that perhaps, like they did in Indiana, they could take a look at it. But this wasn’t voted on by the people, this was a [state] house bill that was signed by the governor.

MUIR: And we’ll be watching it.

CyberAlerts Judiciary Culture/Society Conservatives & Republicans Liberals & Democrats Protesters Anti-Religious Bias Homosexuality Transgender ABC Good Morning America Video David Wright Robin Roberts