A law in Ann Arbor could force conservatives to spread leftist talking points and get leftists elected.
Earlier this week, the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) filed a lawsuit on behalf of a conservative political firm, warning that Ann Arbor’s non-discrimination law would violate the free speech rights of conservatives.
Should the firm fail to comply with the law, they could face $500 daily fines. ADF is currently representing Grant Strobl and Jacob Chludzinski, the founders of the company ThinkRight Strategies.
ADF Legal Counsel Green told PJ Media that “On the face of the law, it is illegal for Grant and Jacob to decline a request to promote, for example, a Democrat running for office or Planned Parenthood because that would be discrimination based on political beliefs under the law.”
Green continued, stating that “Public accommodations laws across the country have been used to force people to express messages that violate their convictions”, citing the cases of Christian baker Jack Phillips and Christian florist Barronelle Stutzman. These two individuals gained wall-to-wall coverage for refusing to use their services to celebrate a same-sex wedding, due to their beliefs that marriage is between a man and a woman.
However, state agencies in Colorado and Washington state ruled that they had discriminated against individuals based on their sexual orientation. ADF came to both of their defenses in the name of free speech.
Green said that “Grant and Jacob, like all of Alliance Defending Freedom’s clients, will work with people from all backgrounds. There are simply messages they cannot promote.”
The legal counsel added, “Everyone should be concerned when the government steps in and starts compelling people to advocate for views they oppose.”
He also argued that “Ann Arbor’s law would force Grant and Jacob, who started a political consulting firm, to advocate for their conservative political beliefs, to advance political causes that they oppose. The government should never force people to express political causes that violate their convictions.”
PJ Media reports that Ann Arbor’s “non-discrimination law is extremely broad and open to abuse.” The law categorizes a “place of public accommodation” as any “business … whose goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages or accommodations are extended, offered, sold or otherwise made available to the public.”
Such companies are prohibited from discriminating based on political beliefs.
The ADF lawyer pointed out that “Ann Arbor’s law is quite broad.” According to him, it “even prohibits Grant and Jacob from putting a statement on their website that they will only advance conservative beliefs and from having internal policies saying that.”
Regardless of where people stand on the political divide, all of them should be supporting Grant and Jacob in this lawsuit because people should be able to determine for themselves which political causes they promote. If Grant and Jacob were to post an explanation on their website of the political beliefs they can and cannot advance or to decline to write a speech for a Democrat’s campaign, they could face fines of up to $500 per day.
Many Americans take their free speech rights for granted.
With how emboldened the cultural and political Left have become since Trump was elected, they are no longer pulling punches when it comes to infringing on basic American civil liberties.
This Ann Arbor case shows that the Left is willing to fight anywhere to undermine our rights. In turn, they must be confronted accordingly.
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