American Idol‘s runner up, La’Porsha Renae caught a little backlash after her comments on Mississippi’s new anti-LGBT law.
The HB 1523 law gives religious organizations and private associations the legal right to refuse services to people of the LGBT community that are not consistent with the moral or religious beliefs of that organization. For example, a Christian pastor has the legal right to deny marrying a gay couple at the church he presides over because of his religious beliefs.
Services that could interfere with religious or moral beliefs of religious organizations include marrying gay couples, allowing gay couples to adopt, and providing housing for gay couples, amongst other services.
The law prohibits the state the government from prosecuting religious organizations or private associations for exercising their religious beliefs. Those exercises include firing employees whose religious beliefs do not match that of the company.
La’Porsha Renae, who is a Mississippi native, was asked her opinion on the anti-LGBT law. She stated:
“This is how I feel about the LGBT community: They are people just like us. They’re not animals as someone stated before. They’re people with feelings. Although all of us may not agree with that particular lifestyle for religious reasons, whatever the reason is, you still treat each other with respect. Everybody is a human being. We should be able to coexist with one another.”
“I am one of the people who don’t really agree with that lifestyle. I wasn’t brought up that way. It wasn’t how I was raised. But I do have a lot of friends and a lot of people that I love dearly who are gay and homosexual and they’re such sweet, nice people. We should just respect each other’s differences and opinions and move on.”
Can you believe people are upset over this statement? Well believe it. Nowadays, people get offended over everything.
People of the LGBT community were mostly upset by La’Porsha referring to homosexuality as a “lifestyle”. After people blew up her mentions, calling the singer “ignorant” and even dragging her in open letters, she silenced her mentions by releasing this statement via Twitter:
She then took to Periscope to apologize again, saying the interview question caught her off guard, as she was supposed to be talking about singing, not gay rights:
“I tried to be as open and honest and neutral as possible, but that’s the way interviews go. Sometimes when you do interviews, it gets twisted up. I can understand when I read it back why people were offended, and for that I deeply apologize.”
“I wasn’t trying to offend anyone. I was just trying to honestly answer a question that caught me off guard. It was supposed to be an interview about singing, and it became political and I’m not a political person at all.”
If religious organizations and other businesses exercise their religious right to deny LGBT people services, chances are they were already exercising that right long before the law passed. In fact, most businesses post signs explaining they have the right to refuse service to anyone for any reason they see fit.
It’s baffling to me why a gay, lesbian, or transgendered couple would seek services from an organization that upholds a religion that preaches against homosexuality in the first place.
Because of this law, companies in Mississippi are predicted to lose billions in profits. If a company denies you service, take your money elsewhere. It’s that simple.