Clerk In New York Refuses To Sign Marriage Licences For Gay Married Couples

Ledyard town clerk Rose Marie Belforti tacitly admits to imposing theocratic law on her constituents in blatant disregard for the actual laws she is tasked with enforcing:

That all changed in August when Belforti sent a letter to the Ledyard town board two weeks after the Marriage Equality Act became law in New York, allowing same-sex couples to marry. The letter cited Belforti’s religious beliefs as a reason she could not sign marriage licenses for same-sex couples. Belforti also asked for permission to designate a deputy clerk, who would be responsible for issuing all marriage licenses.

In an interview with The Citizen at her home Wednesday, Belforti said she answers to a “higher court” — God — and teachings in the Bible tell her that same-sex marriage is wrong.

“I am a Christian. I believe marriage was created by God as a blessing to be shared between a man and a woman spiritually, emotionally and physically,” Belforti said. “Man cannot legislate a divinely ordained institution by a majority vote of those who do not recognize the sanctity of marriage, as God intended it to be. My conscience, which is also God-given, does not allow me to endorse same-sex marriage.”

This is why every single candidate for public office who starts talking about his or her views on God as a qualification for their governance needs to have his or her views on the separation of church and state rigorously examined.

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About Daniel Fincke

Dr. Daniel Fincke  has his PhD in philosophy from Fordham University and spent 11 years teaching in college classrooms. He wrote his dissertation on Ethics and the philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche. On Camels With Hammers, the careful philosophy blog he writes for a popular audience, Dan argues for atheism and develops a humanistic ethical theory he calls “Empowerment Ethics”. Dan also teaches affordable, non-matriculated, video-conferencing philosophy classes on ethics, Nietzsche, historical philosophy, and philosophy for atheists that anyone around the world can sign up for. (You can learn more about Dan’s online classes here.) Dan is an APPA  (American Philosophical Practitioners Association) certified philosophical counselor who offers philosophical advice services to help people work through the philosophical aspects of their practical problems or to work out their views on philosophical issues. (You can read examples of Dan’s advice here.) Through his blogging, his online teaching, and his philosophical advice services each, Dan specializes in helping people who have recently left a religious tradition work out their constructive answers to questions of ethics, metaphysics, the meaning of life, etc. as part of their process of radical worldview change.