At the Center for Law and Religion Forum today, my colleague Marc DeGirolami has a trenchant post on the controversy over that Arizona law on religious freedom:
The media coverage of the now-vetoed Arizona bill amending the existing Arizona RFRA has been abominable. The claim that the bill would have permitted private businesses to refuse to serve gay people is simply untrue; the bill did not say that. The bill was shortjust two pages long. Anybody could have read it quickly to see what it provided: expansion of state RFRA coverage for businesses and an amendment that private actions are now covered (as in, what the government cannot do directly, it cannot do indirectly by giving private parties a cause of action). The bill would have done nothing to change the basic burden-shifting framework of the Arizona RFRAthe same framework used by the federal RFRAin which a judge is charged to determine whether there is a substantial burden counterbalanced by a compelling government interest achieved by the least restrictive means.
You can read the whole thing here.