The Georgia Legislature produced a pair of wins for Christians this week.
The “Pastor Protection Act” is a more specific version of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which lawmakers balked on last year after Indiana faced incendiary blowback.
H.B. 757 was unanimously passed Thursday by the Georgia House and now goes to the Senate–hopefully it won’t die there. Would H.B. 757 have protected Kelvin Cochran, the Atlanta Fire Chief who was fired for writing a book based on Scriptural principles (that cause the LBGT lobby to wish the Bible itself to be banned)?
No. So it doesn’t go far enough. But it does protect pastors, churches and public officials who refuse to participate in same-sex weddings. Jeff Graham of Georgia Equality, the LGBT advocacy group, praised the law, which means it’s very weak tea. But a win is a win.
The second win is the Georgia Senate’s passage of S.B. 308, which allocates state money through a grant program for pregnancy resource centers. My wife and I are on the advisory board of our local crisis pregnancy center, so to us this is great news.
Senate Bill 308 would create a grant program through the state Department of Public Health that promoted pregnancy and parenting efforts at these centers. The bill would require the department to ensure none of the money was used to counsel women to get an abortion unless necessary to prevent her death. The money also could not be used to pay for an abortion or for referrals to clinics that provide abortions.
This bill is the opposite of California’s terrible AB775, which forces pro-life clinics to refer patients for abortions. Of course, Georgia Democrats opposed S.B. 308 with the same tired attacks successfully used on the left coast, citing “false advertising” and “misleading information.”
The bill passed on a party-line vote, with the pro-abortion Democrats offended that a Doritos ad would show the same kind of information about a life growing inside.
A win for mothers and babies is a win for life. I’m grateful to the Christians serving in the Georgia Legislature for their efforts. We need to elect more like Sen. Renee Unterman and Rep. Kevin Tanner; and special thanks to House Speaker David Ralston for his support of H.B. 757.