Those who follow the gay rights movement, especially as it pertains to Religious Right opposition, know all too well that anti-gay wingnuts will go completely Sarah Bernhardt at any perceived slight to the cultural supremacy they still believe they hold. Therefore, when a nondiscrimination law passes and suddenly a wedding photographer who happens to be a wingnut decides she doesn’t want to follow the law, the wingnut is held up as some sort of champion for tradishnul values/a trampled victim. Aside from the fact that it’s a completely disingenuous strategy, it’s sort of gross, as gay teens still attempt and complete suicide at far-too-alarming rates and even now, with a majority of Americans supporting marriage equality, anti-gay hate crimes are still on the rise. Meanwhile the incidences of Christian Fundamentalists being bullied, beaten, maimed or killed for being Christian Fundamentalists in this country are still pretty much zero. So the Religious Right touts these stories, bitching and moaning to the very moon about how we on the side of fairness and equality are the real haters and they’re the real victims.
A New York town clerk has decided to quit her job, rather than sign marriage licenses for gay and lesbian couples:
Laura Fotusky submitted a letter of resignation to the town board in Barker, a small town north of Binghamton, on Monday, saying her religious beliefs prevented her from marrying gay couples.
Okay, fine. If she doesn’t like it, get a new job. Here’s part of her letter:
There was no protection provided in the legislation for Town Clerks who are unable to sign these marriage licenses due to personal religious convictions, even though our US Constitution supports freedom of religion.”
“I believe that there is a higher law than the law of the land. It is the law of God in the Bible. In Acts 5:29, it states, ‘We ought to obey God rather than men.'”
“The Bible clearly teaches that God created marriage between male and female as a divine gift that preserves families and cultures. Since I love and follow Him, I cannot put my signature on something that is against God. Deuteronomy 10:12 says, ‘…What does the Lord your God ask of you but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all His ways, to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and soul, and to observe the Lord’s commands and decrees that I am giving you today for your own good.'”
“I would be compromising my moral conscience if I participated in the licensing procedure.
Unfortunately, Laura’s interpretation of the Bible isn’t a legal document in the state of New York. Also, freedom of religion doesn’t include the right to do inferior work in one’s state career due to one’s religious beliefs. I always say this, but it bears repeating again: discriminating against minorities in secular careers actually isn’t part of the free practice of anyone’s religion! Despite what the Religious Right says, we actually don’t care whether or not their churches are willing to perform same-sex marriage. Why? Because those churches are where they actually DO practice their religion. That is actually part of their Constitutional guarantee of freedom of religion, and as such, should be protected. But this is civil marriage we’re talking about. Duh…
Oh, but watch. The usual suspects will add this one to their litany of sob stories about how it’s just so gosh darn hard to be a Fundamentalist Christian in the United States.