Republican lawmakers unveil bill to legally redefine gay unions as ‘parody of marriage’

Republicans in South Carolina and Wyoming are pushing new bills to segregate same-sex weddings and legally redefine them as a “parody” of marriage.

Six GOP lawmakers unveiled the ‘Marriage and Constitution Restoration Act’ bill to the South Carolina House last week.

The bill appears to be an attempt to segregate same-sex marriage from heterosexual unions in the wake of the 2015 Supreme Court decision that brought equal marriage to all 50 states.

The proposed law seeks to define “any form of marriage that does not involve one man and one woman” as a “parody marriage”.

The lawmakers claim that ” the State of South Carolina’s decision to respect, endorse, and recognize parody marriages and sexual orientation policies has excessively entangled the government with the religion of Secular Humanism, failed to accomplish its intended purpose, and created an indefensible legal weapon against nonobservers”.

It adds: “The State of South Carolina shall no longer respect, endorse, or recognize any form of parody marriage policy because parody marriage policies are nonsecular.

“The State of South Carolina shall no longer enforce, recognize, or respect any policy that treats sexual orientation as a suspect class because all such statutes lack a secular purpose.

“The State of South Carolina will continue to enforce, endorse, and recognize marriages between a man and a woman because such marriage policies are secular, accomplishing nonreligious objectives.”

Six GOP lawmakers, Representatives Steven Wayne Long, Bill Chumley , Mike Burns, John McCravy, Josiah Magnuson and Rick Martin, are signed on as sponsors of the law.

A near-identical bill was submitted in Wyoming, sponsored by GOP lawmakers Lars Lone and Roy Edwards.

The bill is highly unlikely to become law – as even if it passes through the legislatures, it runs in clear contravention to the Supreme Court ruling on equal marriage and would likely be struck down.

Jeff March, the president of South Carolina Pride, told WACH: “Pure prejudice is what that is. Pure outright prejudice.

“The word parody is very comical in its definition. an imitation of the style of a particular writer or genre with deliberate exaggeration for comic effort. They want to call our marriage that we fought so hard for, marriage equality, they want to call our marriage now, a ‘parody marriage’ that insults me on the deepest level.

“We’re not trying to impersonate anyone here. we are trying to be the equal of everyone here.It’s written with hate. I can’t imagine there are state officials that put this in writing.”

South Carolina is one of the worst states in the US in terms of LGBT rights laws.

It is one of seven states that continues to prohibit teachers in publicly-funded schools from discussing LGBT issues in the classroom.

So-called ‘no promo homo’ laws are on the statue books in Alabama, Arizona, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas.

It landed a bottom rating in this year’s State Equality Index, a tracker released by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation and the Equality Federation Institute that breaks down state-by-state laws and policies that affect LGBTQ people and their families.

The report found that twenty-six states are in the lowest-rated category, ‘High Priority to Achieve Basic Equality’.

States in this category have many laws that undermine equality, from unrepealed laws that criminalize HIV and sodomy, to measures allowing religious-based discrimination against LGBTQ people.

An overwhelming majority do not have non-discrimination laws that include sexual orientation or gender identity protections; few have hate crime laws.

The states in the category include Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, West Virginia, Wyoming.

HRC President Chad Griffin said: “If an LGBTQ couple drove from Maine to California today, their legal rights and civil rights protections could change more than 20 times at state borders and city lines. The vast majority of Americans today understand that this crazy quilt of protections — and lack thereof — is wrong, impractical, and unacceptable.

“The time has come for us to do away with this ragged patchwork of state laws that fail to protect LGBTQ people equally by passing the Equality Act once and for all.”