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April 16, 2009


I still don't understand how a gay couple getting married will affect a religious person's right to attend church services.
I'm not sure religious freedom means the right to tell other voters how they must live their lives.
Help me out, please.


1st - religion is not simply the right to attend a church service. That is clearly not relevant to the point here.

Now, you've heard I'm sure that "a person's right to throw a punch ends at the other person's nose". A nice schoolyard metaphor, but what that has in common with the marriage/religious liberties debate is that there are two things inherently at odds here.

As Volokh states, same-sex marriage will likely lead to discrimination suits. Pastors who refuse to do same-sex marriages may be sued. Do you not see how there is a conflict between religious freedom and this redefinition of marriage (regardless of which side you stand on)?

And that's just the start of it. Think of all the people who are involved in a wedding:
- Photographer
- Printer
- Florist
- Musicians
- Caterer
- Owner of hall or church (individual, organization or denomination)
- Officiator at ceremony (whether civil or clergy)

All of these people could be liable for litigation if they refuse for religious reasons.

And that's just weddings. What about a religious organization that has a code of ethics that forbids same-sex marriage? Will they be forced to hire someone who will not sign this code of ethics? Or would they be forced to change said code of ethics?

Plus what about a clergy person who preaches against same-sex marriage (or anyone who speaks out against it for any reason)? Can you say "hate crime"?

I'm sure there are many other possibilities I have not listed.

BTW lawsuits of this sort have already happened here in Canada.

Your statement "I'm not sure religious freedom means the right to tell other voters how they must live their lives" sounds kind of ironic, since same-sex marriage freedom apparently means exactly that.

There has already been a suit in the U.S. where a photographer was sued because she wouldn't take pictures for a lesbian couple's wedding. The couple won the suite. I also heard of a case in progress where a doctor would not artificially inseminate a lesbian couple because of religious reasons.

So hold on to your hats the second ammendment (and the second ammendment) is getting shredded--in the name of tolerance of course.


>>Pastors who refuse to do same-sex marriages may be sued.

No, they WILL be sued.

"No, they WILL be sued." (T)

Not neccesarily - since suing costs a pretty penny and takes some sweet time - how many gay couples are willing to actually do that? Very few I imagine.

However, I think religious institutions should have the right as to whom they marry - straight or gay - since this is their ordination they swore.

That being said, maybe it is a human rights issue but it may mean their is still some room to choose not to marry someone based on the fact 'you don't know them' and choose not on those grounds. Why does it have to be about being gay as the grounds for not marrying them?

I know this much - pastors can refuse to do weddings and funerals - and this happens everyday in every city. Now because gay people are getting the right to marry does not mean they have the right to determine who will marry them...I don't even have that right as a straight person (it's called choice).

Will things change because of this bill - not really.

"Not neccesarily - since suing costs a pretty penny and takes some sweet time - how many gay couples are willing to actually do that? Very few I imagine."

Even one is too many. Also, the cost and time are immaterial to those with a dogmatic agenda (like some on the radical gay-rights front-line). The ACLU will probably step in and supply the lawyers for free, anyway. Curious that they wouldn't take up the cause of defending the "civil liberties" of the defendants...

This is an ideological battle, not a practical one. A homosexual couple suing a photographer isn't doing so because there are no other photographers around, they're doing it to bully the rest of society into bending to their will (under threat of bankruptcy by way of lawsuit).

I think Christians need to stop fighting to prevent "gay weddings" and begin to fight to have a difference between religious ceremonies and civil unions. Short of a national revival, like that of the Great Awakening, our nation will not stop traversing the course it is currently on. Rather than try to stop the tidal wave head on, we need to place our efforts into diverting it.

If there is a difference between the government recognized civil union and the religious ceremony of the wedding itself, then it would be nearly impossible for homosexuals to sue churches because they wouldn't perform the religious ceremony. Just some thoughts.

I agree with Paul...cost is not a deterrent for folks with an axe to grind.

Plus, even just one or two suits will do incredible damage because of precedent. One court decision can set the course of law thereafter for a long, long time, not to mention shape public opinion.

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