"License to discriminate" executive order to be signed Thursday

President Donald Trump, shown here in March 29, 2017. Photo via the NCTE.

President Donald Trump is anticipated to sign the highly controversial executive order on religious liberty – labelled by opponents a “license to discriminate” – this Thursday, the National Day of Prayer.

The order has been highly pushed and anticipated by several conservative leaders and lawmakers, including Vice President Mike Pence.

Human rights organizations ranging from GLSEN, the National Center for Transgender Equality, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Human Rights Campaign, have railed against the executive order. They all point to its language discriminating against marriage equality, abortion, premarital sex, and transgender people.

The original draft specifically protects the tax-exempt status of any organization which “believes, speaks, or acts (or declines to act) in accordance with the belief that marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman, sexual relations are properly reserved for such a marriage, male and female and their equivalents refer to an individual’s immutable biological sex as objectively determined by anatomy, physiology, or genetics at or before birth, and that human life begins at conception and merits protection at all stages of life.”

The original draft’s language would also risk violation of the first amendment by giving coverage to a specific set of religious beliefs.

A senior administrative official has warned that lawyers are still fine-tuning the document, meaning that the final draft may have more legal grounds.

Copyright The Gayly - 5/3/2017 @ 4:15 p.m. CST