- September 3, 2015 in Columnists
Hey Church Lady, gays are Americans too
Once again Rowan County, Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis has refused to do her job and issue marriage licenses to gay couples in defiance of a U.S. Supreme Court decision. Davis claims as a born-again Christian she must refuse the licenses on “God’s authority.” Davis goes before a federal judge on Thursday facing contempt.
What I don’t understand is if it’s really religious liberty at stake then why are only homosexuals in the crosshairs?
In Matthew 19:9 Jesus says, “And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.” Does Davis deny licenses to those divorced for reasons other than “immorality?”
The Apostle Paul, the same one who condemned homosexuality, condemned divorce and remarriage. Does Davis issue licenses to people who have been divorced? And Kim Davis herself has been divorced three times and married four times so how does she sit in judgment of other people’s marriages?
Do cohabitating heterosexual couples engaging in premarital sex get Davis’ blessing when they show up for a marriage license?
Do religious people working at a buffet have the right to refuse service to an obese person for fear of contributing to their sin of gluttony?
Do religious folks working in a convenience store or pharmacy have the authority to deny selling condoms to unmarried people who may use them to fornicate?
Are Christian cashiers going to refuse to sell alcohol for fear customers will get drunk, violating another celestial prohibition?
Lying, envying, fits of anger, being disrespectful to one’s parents, swearing, drunkenness, sex outside of marriage, lust, jealousy, pride, stealing, the love of money, are all sins according to the Bible. Wait, I’m not done. Astrology, boasters, evil thoughts, selfish ambition, not dressing modestly, complaining, gossiping and on and on are listed in the Bible as sins. But those handful of county clerks refusing to issue licenses to gays aren’t sitting there with a ledger keeping track of all of these sins and deciding whether or not the people in front of them are worthy of serving. No, it’s the gays who are singled out for this exclusion.
Why? One has to wonder if the discrimination is rooted in belief or if the belief is the cover for the discrimination.
There are many Christian churches and denominations that don’t regard homosexuality as a sin. But in the end it’s irrelevant because this isn’t a religious liberty question. This is a 14th Amendment question and gay Americans are being unjustly and illegally discriminated against.
Kim Davis has supporters and cheerleaders coast to coast. One of them, Republican presidential candidate-also-ran and Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal says Davis has a right to refuse based on her conscience. It’s sad that a sitting governor seeking the presidency doesn’t understand how our constitutional government works. But supporters should ask themselves what if a DMV clerk in Rowan County was a Sunni Muslim from Saudi Arabia and said his conscience wouldn’t allow him to grant drivers licenses to women? Would that be okay? If a county clerk’s conscience moved him to base his decisions on Sharia Law, would Christians applaud that as religious freedom? If a county clerk of a non-Christian faith or someone of no faith said it violated their conscience to serve Christians, would that be okay?
None of our rights are absolute. Yes, you have freedom to believe what you wish. But if cocaine is a sacrament in your religion, guess what? You’re not going to be able to legally use it. If your religion allows you to marry several wives, it’s not happening. Likewise on the human sacrifice. If your religion says you don’t have to serve blacks because they have the “mark of Cain” you’re going to find yourself out of business with a quickness.
Yes, you can believe whatever you want. That doesn’t mean you can do whatever you want.
I’m not saying people should be compelled to violate their conscience. If this issue is that important to her then she should do the right thing and resign her post. No one is forcing her to stay in that position. Resigning in protest has a lengthy history and she can still be the religious martyr she wants to be.
If she doesn’t, I hope the court finds her in contempt. And the Kentucky legislature should impeach her and remove her from her position so someone who will uphold the law can take that seat.
Maya Spier Stiles North
- September 3, 2015 at 10:42 pm