Local Ariz. business owner, children receive death threat over SB 1062 support

E-mail: ‘Die you ****. And I hope your children die too. You hateful **** demon’
Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Attorney sound bite:  Doug Napier

GILBERT, Ariz. — A Gilbert, Ariz. business owner who publicly expressed her support for SB 1062, a religious freedom bill the state legislature passed last week, has received numerous hate e-mails, including one that wishes her and her children dead. It is the latest report of intolerant actions being taken by those who oppose the bill because they claim it and its supporters are “intolerant.”

The e-mail, obtained by Alliance Defending Freedom, reads, “DIE YOU ****. AND I HOPE YOUR CHILDREN DIE TOO. YOU HATEFUL **** DEMON.” The Gilbert business owner received the e-mail and others after expressing her support for SB 1062 in several media interviews.

“If you’re wondering where the supporters of SB 1062 are, they’re home protecting their children from death threats,” said Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Doug Napier. “Sadly, this is not the first time we’ve seen opponents of religious freedom not only spread falsehoods but engage in the very intolerance they say they oppose.”

In addition to threats issued to the Gilbert business owner and others Alliance Defending Freedom are aware of, a Tucson restaurant has posted a sign saying that it reserves the right not to serve Arizona legislators, and a California restaurant and bar that caters to those who identify as homosexual is refusing to serve anyone who supports SB 1062 or similar legislation. Previously, the restaurant also banned bachelorette parties as an “offensive heterosexual tradition” because of their relationship to marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

“We actually support their right to define their businesses the way they wish,” Napier explained. “No business owner of faith that I am aware of wants to deny anyone a sandwich. All religious business owners want is to make sure the government can’t force them to promote a message or engage in an activity that conflicts with their beliefs. That’s all SB 1062 is about, despite the misleading information people may have heard.”

Napier further explained that Alliance Defending Freedom supported the right of a California photographer to refuse to use her expressive talents to photograph Alliance Defending Freedom staff members at an event last year because she disagreed with the organization’s views. Alliance Defending Freedom also supported the right of New Mexico hairstylist Antonio Darden to refuse to cut Gov. Susana Martinez’s hair in 2012 because she supports marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

“Those who truly care about human dignity and are opposed to discrimination should want the same for Arizona businesses who don’t want to be forced to violate their beliefs either,” said Napier.
 
  • News release: “Major legal scholars send letter to Ariz. governor in support of SB 1062” (2014-02-26)
  • ADF commentary: “Setting the record straight on SB 1062” (East Valley Tribune, 2014-02-26)
  • Pronunciation guide: Napier (Nuh-PEER’)
 
Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization that advocates for the right of people to freely live out their faith.
 
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