Should County Clerks Be Given “Conscientious Objector” Status On Gay Marriage?

by William Teach | July 5, 2015 8:04 am

An interesting question posed by the Christian Science Monitor (via Hot Air headlines[1])

Gay marriage: Can religious clerks conscientiously object to issuing licenses?[2]

After the US Supreme Court’s decision declaring same-sex marriage a fundamental right last week, many county clerks and local magistrates soon found themselves at the center of new questions about the scope of religious liberty and the civic responsibilities required by their jobs.

Should there be a kind of “conscientious objector” or religious exemption status for those with deeply held religious objections to same-sex marriage, if other government employees are available to provide couples with their constitutionally guaranteed rights? Can clerks and judges opt out of participating in personally issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples?

Now, many will say “hey, they’re government employees, so they are required to uphold the edicts as put out by the government. So what if it wasn’t legal prior to them being hired”. But, what of people who voluntarily join the military, then decide that they do not want to actually participate in military action? Many are given that conscientious objector status, despite knowing what the military does. Liberals certainly do not say “well, that person should resign, or be booted out”, do they? What of someone who has had a job for a long time, and is now being told to do something which infringes on their 1st Amendment provided Right to religious freedom?

Of course, some people are more equal than others. It’s apparently OK to infringe on some people’s Rights.

But on Thursday, the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky filed a federal lawsuit[3] on behalf of four couples – two same-gender and two opposite-gender – who were denied marriage licenses in a jurisdiction east of Lexington, where a clerk has refused to issue them to anyone.

The Kentucky branch of the ACLU said in statement[4] that the clerk “has the absolute right to believe whatever she wants about God, faith, and religion, but as a government official who swore an oath to uphold the law, she cannot pick and choose who she is going to serve, or which duties her office will perform based on her religious beliefs.”

Interesting. As rogerb notes at the Hot Air link “The exact same people who supported Obama choosing which parts of Obamacare to implement and which parts to delay will tell you no, they can’t.” Truth boom.

Let’s consider how often elected officials pick and choose which laws they want to enforce. Think about illegal immigration. Sanctuary cities. Giving legal status to DREAMERS and others via executive amnesty. Releasing low (and high) level criminal offenders who are illegal aliens. Remember[5] how Obama shut down parks and such, denying access to US citizens, then allowed a group of illegal aliens to hold a protest?

Imagine a company deciding to delete tens of thousands of emails, after using an unsecured private email server. Imagine a private company suddenly having a massive computer hard drive malfunction right as a serious issue of negligence came to light. Imagine a group running guns into Mexico. There are lots and lots of ways in which Team Obama has decided which laws to enforce, and which to not. Heck, even breaking the law[6]. Let’s be clear, Republicans will pick and choose at times, too. Team Obama, though, stated they would refuse to defend DOMA, despite being The Law.

If Liberals want county clerks, and private citizens who are bakers and such, to be forced to violate their religious beliefs or face the consequences, they should also believe that Team Obama, including Barack, should face the consequences of failing to uphold the law, right?

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove[7]. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach[8].

  1. Hot Air headlines:
  2. Gay marriage: Can religious clerks conscientiously object to issuing licenses?:
  3. lawsuit:
  4. in statement:
  5. Remember:
  6. breaking the law:
  7. Pirate’s Cove:
  8. @WilliamTeach:

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