The case of the boarding house owners recently who wanted to prevent gay couples renting rooms brings into focus an issue between having beliefs or opinions, and having the right to act on those beliefs and opinions in ways judged not to be in the interest of society.
The boarding house owners with strong Christian beliefs felt that anti-discrimination law forces them to condone practices they do not approve of. They argue that the boarding house is their home and that this therefore affords them particular rights.
On the other hand, they are offering accommodation as a business and cannot legitimately turn down the business if such a rejection is based on discrimination. Subjecting people to discrimination is of course illegal but businesses make decisions all the time about the deals they make and the people they trade with. Boarding houses may well turn away people they feel would be trouble. Pubs refuse to serve customers on the same basis.
In the late 50s and 60s, it was common to see signs in boarding houses rejecting Irish and black people. Such odious racism is a thing of the past but the justification of prejudice based on religious faith is now current again.
The law exists to ensure that people who hold strong views are not thereby empowered to act on those beliefs if those actions infringe the rights of others. Consequently, if the owners of boarding houses want to offer their accommodation to the public, it has to be free of discrimination. If they do not want to trade under those legal conditions, they are of course free to cease trading. What they are not entitled to do is to make themselves exempt from the law based on some supposed status of their religious belief.
The notion that people have to serve some religious authority over and above the law is not just unacceptable in a democracy, but it is completely unworkable. The first time a Jedi knight had a conflict of interest with a Buddhist, the entire legal process would fall apart! If we included any of the thousands of other religious faiths, the plethora of justifications for prejudice would cascade out of control. All these things would be justified by irrational beliefs.
The absurdity of justification of prejudice by religious belief will be rightly exposed but by extension we should question how we can establish any moral basis for behaviour based on such irrationalism. You can’t discriminate against gays booking rooms. You should also be prevented from terrifying small children with stories of perdition and hell for those without faith.