After the historic US Supreme Court decision, Obergefell v. Hodges, affirming the right of LGBT people to marry and have their marriages recognized in all 50 states, political and religious conservatives whined and cried about the end of religion as we know it and claimed there would be massive lawsuits to force pastors and churches to perform same-sex marriages besides the usual ‘God will smite us all’ end times rhetoric. Relax conservatives, you can still hate same-sex marriage. You just can’t stop them from happening now.
One of my favorite sections of the decision:
It is now clear that the challenged laws burden the liberty of same-sex couples, and it must be further acknowledged that they abridge central precepts of equality . . . Especially against a long history of disapproval of their relationships, this denial to same-sex couples of the right to marry works a grave and continuing harm. The imposition of this disability on gays and lesbians serves to disrespect and subordinate them. And the Equal Protection Clause, like the Due Process Clause, prohibits this unjustified infringement of the fundamental right to marry.
Even though 60% of the public supports same-sex marriage and so they should agree with the court’s decision, there are people opposed to it and they have some ridiculous reasons why they didn’t like the decision.
Some Republican presidential hopefuls tried to pander to the 40% who hate gay marriage as if they might help them win in 2016:
“In a country as diverse as ours, good people who have opposing views should be able to live side by side. It is now crucial that as a country we protect religious freedom and the right of conscience and also not discriminate,” Jeb Bush said in his statement.
“I will not acquiesce to an imperial court any more than our founders acquiesced to an imperial British monarch. We must resist and reject judicial tyranny, not retreat,” Huckabee said in a statement.
Jindal tweeted that no “earthly court” could alter the definition of marriage.
Where was this caterwauling when the court made Corporations people in the Hobby Lobby decision?
And on the religious conservative side, they feared the end of “religious liberty” (to hate???):
Rev. Albert Mohler, the president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, admonished followers in a tweet, “the challenge for Christians now is to speak the truth in love and to speak love in truth. Love of neighbor means we cannot lie about marriage.”
Many Christian leaders believe the ruling will create a restricted role for people of faith in American society.
“The Supreme Court has stripped all Americans of our freedom to debate and decide marriage policy through the democratic process,” Jim Campbell, of the Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Legal Counsel, said. “The freedom to democratically address the most pressing social issues of the day is the heart of liberty.”
Rev. Samuel Rodriguez says the decision “serves as a defacto and legal catalyst for the marginalization of Americans who embrace a biblical worldview.”
Relax conservatives, you can still hate same-sex marriage. You can refuse to have same-sex marriages and you can refuse to attend them.
What you can’t do any longer is prevent them from happening and discriminating against people who enter into them.
The complaint that the ruling would violate opponents “religious liberty” only tells people political and religious conservatives want to act like assholes toward LGBT people and to have the force of the state to do it. That was exactly Justice Kennedy’s argument quoted at the beginning of this piece.
The 1st amendment still exists so religious liberty isn’t threatened by the ruling.
Churches, ministers, and priests will not be forced to perform same-sex weddings.
If you are in the business world and you think you can’t provide your services to same-sex couples because of “freedom” then maybe you need to close down.
At the end of the day you can still hate LGBT people, if you want. This ruling won’t change that.
One of my favorite lines about this issue of religious liberty and same-sex marriage comes from the 2010 9th circuit ruling that struck down California’s same-sex marriage ban:
Moral disapproval alone is an improper basis on which to deny rights
Exactly. So if religious people want to be assholes, more power to them but they can’t use their religion to impose their dislike of same-sex marriage on the rest of us.