NH Anti-Gays Admit that “Religious Protections” are Redundant

Timothy Kincaid

May 15th, 2009

Opponents of marriage equality only have a few arrows in their quiver. The strongest of these is “infringing on religious freedoms” and they have a handful of anecdotes that can be distorted to appear as though churches are going to lose their rights to speak or believe according to their faith.

Those who favor marriage equality consistently respond that we have no interest in infringing on their rights to religious self-determination nor are we trying to micro-manage their faith. And we point out that we couldn’t do so even if we wanted to; the First Amendment to the US Constitution protects the rights of religions.

However, in Connecticut and Vermont – and now proposed in New Hampshire – are reassurances, special provisions included to assure religions and those who practice them that their preachers and houses of worship will not be compelled to conduct ceremonies contrary to their faith. And those favoring marriage equality are not concerned because we know that these protections are already present in the Constitution.

But now that we offer these concessions, anti-gays are still not pleased. Because, as they’ve known all along, the objections which they raised were not truthful to begin with.

Consider the words of Kevin H. Smith, the executive director of anti-gay group Cornerstone Policy Research:

“The folks who [they are] claiming to be protecting in this bill are already protected in the First Amendment by the freedom of religion…”

Anti-gays have known all along that their claims that churches would lose their tax exempt status or preachers would be jailed was nothing but hot air. A convenient lie told to advance a political agenda, but one that they know full well is untrue.

Ben in Oakland

May 15th, 2009

sarcasm, irony, WTF– all fail me.

Christopher Waldrop

May 15th, 2009

One of the things that prevents those of us who are in favor of marriage equality from playing on a level field is that the opponents are willing to lie as long as it serves their purposes.

Of course if opponents of marriage equality had to stick to the facts they wouldn’t have an argument to make.

Matt

May 15th, 2009

In this case, redundant is good.

Good that it gives US more “arrows” to make our case.

Good that it helps disarm the concerns of religious fundamentalists that their church’s rules will be infringed upon.

Good all around.

Perfect way to know where somebody you’re talking to stands on the issue- start by asking them, “Do you believe your town/state/country should be governed exclusively by the rules of your church and your religion?”

Ephilei

May 15th, 2009

@Timothy
It appears that quote has disappeared from the original article.

Bruno

May 15th, 2009

Which just proves that the ultimate goals of these far right organizations are to make our lives as miserable as possible and give us as little legal protection as possible, at no expense to their own legal protections. Hideous, monstrous, self-centered, bigoted asses they all are.

Timothy Kincaid

May 15th, 2009

Ephilei,

Sorry. I forgot to link to the Boston Globe article.

Richard W. Fitch

May 15th, 2009

“Every time the citizens are allowed to vote, even in California, citizens vote for marriage to mean the union between one man and one woman,” said Kris Mineau, president of the Massachusetts Family Institute. A majority of the public recognizes “that the primary role of marriage is children,” he said. “It takes a father and mother to create a child, and every child has an inalienable right to be raised by a father and mother.”……………….Mr. Mineau, please explain that to the hundreds of American heterosexual couples who CHOOSE not to have children. And while you are at it, why not invalidate those unions and the unions of those who are unable to bear children for whatever reason. When will this ‘Survival of the Species’ argument finally get a decent death??????

cd

May 16th, 2009

Don’t take Kris Mineau seriously. And don’t forget that almost all arguments the anti-gay side advances are purely instrumental: they take anything that works on the Undecided and its truth content is, er, secondary.

Their only true belief is that gay people and gay marriage just violate The Way Things Have To Be Because My Ego God Said So.

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