Internet pioneer and television host Fernando Espuelas called out Family Research Council President Tony Perkins over the weekend for supporting anti-LGBT laws throughout the U.S. "specifically" for the purpose of discriminating against minority groups.
On his Matter of Fact talk show, Espuelas noted that Perkins had supported multiple co-called "religious freedom" laws in the past and was currently backing a North Carolina law limiting the bathroom rights of transgender people.
Perkins argued that the North Carolina law was a "public safety bill," and that broader laws in states like Mississippi prevented the government from "penalizing" Christians for refusing to serve LGBT people.
Espuelas, however, pointed out that "the idea that someone who has a business license can then discriminate against one group or another is something that was put to rest in the 1960s."
"We're talking about forcing someone to take their creative ability, their talent and force them," Perkins insisted. "This is almost forced servitude, saying that you have to be a part of this or the state is going to punish you."
"That's essentially the same argument as segregation," Espuelas stated.
Perkins disagreed: 'We're talking about marriage. That is a sacred institution. Just three years ago the president had the same view."
"But he didn't have the view that people should be discriminated against," Espuelas said. "How is it not discrimination if you pick one group, a specific group of people and have different rights for them? How is that not discrimination?"
"No one can deny that marriage is a religious ceremony," Perkins insisted. "And you're forcing someone to violate their beliefs."
"No, and it's very clear, and the reason why you support is why?" Espuelas countered. "You support it because specifically these laws allow businesses to discriminate against gay people. Because you have a point of view regarding it."
"No," Perkins gasped. "It allows people to live out their religious freedom."