Religious Liberty Exemptions Aren’t Necessary (According to the NYT)


The people on the New York Times editorial staff have either tipped their hand or are simply bad writers. In a recent editorial, the NYT stated that the religious exemption clauses in the new Gay Marriage law were unnecessary because of “Constitutional protection,” yet they go on to say in the next paragraph, “…we are deeply troubled by their discriminatory intent. The whole purpose of this law should be to expand civil rights without shedding other protections in the process.”

They are troubled by religious organizations and not-for-profit organizations affiliated being exempted from the process? If the Constitution protects religious liberty, then why would they bring up the “discriminatory intent” of allowing such provisions in the law? Obviously those provisions were added into the law so the issue wouldn’t be left to some court, where the court could rule that churches are obligated to marry homosexual couples. And there’s the rub – by putting the provisions into the law, no one can sue a church for refusing to marry a same-gender couple, nor can they sue a not-for-profit organization that refuses the same couple to use their buildings or for other reasons (for instance, adoption agencies and the Boy Scouts).

The idea is that if one were allowed to sue such religious organizations then there is a possibility that a court could uphold such beliefs and actions on those beliefs as discrimination. It’s not enough to have had gay marriage past, rather some feel they must force others to act and think in a certain way. Even if the religious organizations are wrong and hurtful in their stances, certainly a freedom-loving nation is willing to allow people the freedom to be wrong, at least to a certain degree.

I’m not saying anything about the gay marriage law or gay marriage in general. I’m simply saying that I support religious liberty. If a non-muslim man chose to marry a muslim woman, a mosque wouldn’t recognize the marriage or perform the ceremony until he converted. That mosque has the right to act in such a way. So long as a religious organization doesn’t explicitly call for violence against a particular group, they are within their religious rights to act as they please (and only the most ignorant or radical liberal would say that simply being against homosexual marriage is an explicit call for violence). But in our Orwellian world the law must also act against thoughts, not just actions, because we must force everyone to conform to one way of thinking. It’s the Secular Borg – resistance is futile, you will be assimilated.

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