Rhode Island Senator Frank Ciccone, a longstanding opponent of marriage equality, is offering a “compromise” bill in the state Senate. The Providence Journal explains:
Ciccone’s bill calls for a statewide vote on a proposed amendment to the state Constitution that would say: “Marriage is the legally-recognized union of two people. The right of the people to marry shall not be denied on the basis of the gender of the parties.” If passed, the proposed Constitutional amendment would also recognize same-sex marriages conducted in other states. But it also contains legal protections for a long list of people who do not choose to officiate or provide “services, accommodations, advantages, facilities, goods or privileges” for a marriage ceremony that “violates the institution or business owner’s “religious beliefs.”
So it puts our rights up for another public vote, and if we win, we still can be turned away by anyone citing a “religious” objection. Some compromise. What if those religious belief include a belief that interracial couples should not be able to marry?