A 'paradise' amid the rocks and weeds

University of Chicago

RFRA not like Jim Crow laws at all

RFRA not like Jim Crow laws at all

"It's the Jim Crow law of our time." That exact quote, or one very much like it, has come from the mouths of reporters, editorialists, activists, corporate CEOs and, of course, politicians, all because of Indiana's Religious Freedom and Restoration Act. (RFRA)

The other day I wrote a column arguing that it's ridiculous to compare Indiana's RFRA to Jim Crow laws. It was obvious, at least to me, that lots of people didn't really understand what RFRA was. What I failed to appreciate is that perhaps even more people didn't really know what Jim Crow laws were.

After the Civil War, the victorious North, led by the fledgling Republican Party, brought civil rights, including...