Libertas Institute, the libertarian think-tank run by Connor Boyack, responded to the LDS church’s exceedingly rare press conference held earlier today, addressing non-discrimination and religious freedom. Libertas said that the think-tank agrees with the LDS Church’s statements and because they agree, they therefore oppose the anti-discrimination bill being proposed.
Libertas further disagreed with Sister Neill F Marriott when she said that “basic rights such as securing a job or a place to live should not depend on someone’s sexual orientation.” Said Libertas: “It is incorrect to say that person X has a right to employment in person Y’s business—for any reason.”
Elder Dallin H Oaks – a member of the LDS Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and Constitutional scholar – refers to a “steady erosion of treasured freedoms” and his support of religious liberty AND housing and employment protections for LGBT persons.
Elder Oaks said:
“Today, state legislatures across the nation are being asked to strengthen laws related to LGBT issues in the interest of ensuring fair access to housing and employment. The leadership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is on record as favoring such measures. At the same time, we urgently need laws that protect religions against discrimination and retaliation while claiming the core rights of free expression and religious practice that are at the heart of our identity as a nation and our legacy as citizens.” (emphasis added)
Libertas said that “anti-discrimination laws themselves erode the treasured freedoms of association and private property.”
Finally, Elder Jeffrey R Holland said that “accommodating the rights of all people” will require the highest level of statesmanship.
Libertas said that the issue is “larger than religion—a person who wishes to rent apartments in his complex only to senior citizens, or Mormons, or single adults, or white males, should be free to do so.”