I Will Not Stand By Quietly While History Repeats Itself

When it is pointed out, whether by myself or others, that the methods of interpreting the Bible used by today's conservatives are the same ones that have been used in the past to justify slavery and discrimination, I am sometimes told that I am exaggerating the situation and the dangers. They sometimes insist that the things that happened in the past simply couldn't happen today – at least, not in the United States.

I am not convinced.

I do not have the power to single-handedly change history. But I will be a public voice saying “No!” when I see these sorts of things transpiring, when I see signs of history repeating itself. And thanks to today's technology, each voice can be heard not only in its own location, but around the world.

Do not be among those who stand quietly by. Let your voice be heard.

 

  • James Larry Deaton

    No national conventions should be held in Arizona. To the degree possible, I will not buy anything made in Arizona or sold from Arizona. (I’ll have to check my fruits and veggies more carefully in the supermarket!) This may hurt the innocent, but the innocent need to let their legislators know that this kind of hate legislation has really negative effects.

  • http://dashifen.com/ David Dashifen Kees

    You know … this is what I love about Patheos. I was just on another channel, commenting on a article tangentially connected to this topic where the author was in favor limiting the rights of the some based on a religious distinction. Now, here I find another author taking the opposite stance.

    • beau_quilter

      Give us a link David! Where was the discussion?

      • http://dashifen.com/ David Dashifen Kees

        It was just the post on the Catholic channel here: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/publiccatholic/2014/02/getting-real-the-marriage-protection-amendment/.

        My comment was poorly worded and I’ve gotten schooled a bit (both in the available comments and elsewhere) for making an argument that could appear to indicate that religious people shouldn’t be able to petition the government for redress of grievances which was not the intent. I haven’t been back for a bit — work calls — but I’ll check back later.

        • Michael Clahan

          You didn’t get schooled – Rebecca Hamilton works tirelessly and obsessively writing anti-gay articles for that Catholic blog, particularly around marriage equality. Anyone who opposes her is either “name calling” or “is being flippant” or “facetious.” She is a Representative in a district in Oklahoma City OK, constantly votes to oppress people who think differently than herself (look up her record), and is a hate-filled bible-thumper who doesn’t tolerate anyone who opposes her. I’ve written in opposition to a few of her articles, particularly when she accuses LGBT people of degrading and eroding the American society. As someone who knows LGBT military service men and women who have fought for the freedoms she would deny others, I have to wonder why someone breaches or at least blurs church/state separation boundaries by both voting on legislation and writing for religious based media.

          • http://dashifen.com/ David Dashifen Kees

            Rebecca was actually very polite, I thought. The schooling happened elsewhere in a non-public setting. Plus, there’s one comment awaiting moderation that in the queue, too.

          • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

            History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance of which their civil as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purposes. ~Thomas Jefferson to Alexander von Humboldt, Dec. 6, 1813

  • http://tunabay.com/ Keika

    Let government dictate how my doctor treats me, and enslave our grandchildren with excess taxation to pay off irresponsible debt incurred when they were just babies. Kiss democracy goodbye by electing politicians who look ahead, without looking behind to see the mess they have made; since they don’t learn anything from the past and so repeat their mistakes over and over. These people have their own bibles to preach from and the dumbed-down and ignorant voters, keep repeating their mistakes. With God’s help, the conservative voice will bring common sense back in vogue.

    • Ian

      enslave our grandchildren with excess taxation

      Please, Mr White Dude, tell us more about how taxation is akin to slavery…

      Also, was there a point in there, I couldn’t find it.

      • beau_quilter

        I think his point was that conservatives bring common sense to government. That’s why the George Bush administration was so successful at boosting our economy and lowering our debt …

        …. oh wait …

        • Ian

          Was I just Poed? I’m not familiar with Keika’s views.

          • beau_quilter

            I’m not sure. I can never tell with Keika.

      • tkdcoach

        Didn’t you get the CPAC memo? Slavery is now = [anything at all including gay sex, abortion, taxation, etc].

        Back in reality–slavery is not akin to anything but slavery.

      • http://tunabay.com/ Keika

        Sorry Ian, I was echoing the passion of the professor, continuing the idea, that if we don’t learn from our past mistakes, we will be doomed to repeat them in the future. I wasn’t expecting my words ‘enslave’ and ‘dictate’ to be taken so literally. But, you really don’t see how excessive taxation can take away your two week vacation and keep you behind your desk, to earn money to pay your bills? That’s undo servitude to me.

        • Andrew Dowling

          I have a sneaking suspicion your federal tax burden is minimal.

        • Ian

          excessive taxation can take away your two week vacation … that’s [undue?] servitude to me.

          Quite. So, I suspect you may want to do some more reading about indentured servitude and/or slavery.

    • beau_quilter

      Gee, Keika, I would really like to take your comment seriously, without demonizing your position …

      but, unfortunately, you look like Hitler …

      • http://tunabay.com/ Keika

        “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. It is almost impossible to counteract ridicule. Also it infuriates the opposition, which then reacts to your advantage.” – SA

        Perfect…right out of Saul Alinksy’s book. An example of how leftists can’t face the truth like a man.
        You’ll be hearing from my lawyer. (Oh, just kidding. Lucky you.)

        • beau_quilter

          Never read Alinsky. Who needs it when you’ve got plenty of swell examples of parody and ridicule in the New Testament.

          I’d point out that you missed the subtler meta-narrative of my comment …

          … but it’s easier to just associate you with Hitler.

    • RustbeltRick

      Blue Cross and Aetna have been telling your doctors how to treat you for 50 years — when they weren’t cancelling your coverage. But please, let’s blame Obama for that.

      • http://tunabay.com/ Keika

        Strange. Don’t recall mentioning Obama by name in my comment.

        • RustbeltRick

          So you’re a fan? Fistbump, brother.

    • ValleyJim

      I find it very ironic that you use Hitler in your post since the repub’s platform is his platform exactly. And you are complaining about taxes when they are at a 60 year low? You really are the example of the faux news viewer aren’t you?

    • Andrew Dowling

      Enslavement! Socialism! False Flag! Benghazi! Nazis! If you repeat enough times, maybe .01% of all this fear mongering will be true!

    • Lamont Cranston

      May all your fears come true.

  • beau_quilter

    By the way, James, for context (correct me if I’m wrong), I think the Arizona congressman holding up the “No Gays Allowed” sign is actually opposing anti-gay legislation. He is using the sign to demonstrate what could happen if the such legislation was passed.

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

      Yes, I think you are right. It was an indication of what might be, what this post is concerned about preventing if at all possible.

  • Paul Dicken

    We have cancelled a holiday to Phoenix, Arizona.

  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

    Dr. McGrath’s blog may as well take up the motto “It stands athwart history, yelling Stop!” now that conservatives have flubbed it. :)

    The single philosophical touchstone I use to test for bigotry—the main bigotry in America being anti-gay bigotry on the right and anti-gun owner bigotry on the left—is the Pink Pistols.

    I’ve got gay neighbors, and I’ve got pistol-packin’ neighbors. Sometimes, they’re the same person. I welcome both commonly despised sorts of folks into my home.

    • beau_quilter

      I’m not an anti-gun owner. I still love my brother, and occasionally eat the wild game he puts on his table.

      But can I still be anti-AK47′s? And can I still be pro- improved gun registration?

      • ValleyJim

        Yes you can — That is called common sense. Something that is sadly lacking in the United States at this time.

        • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

          Most of what is construed as “common sense” gun laws are merely a strategy of incrementalism towards a goal of total prohibition. And what isn’t “common sense” about 20,000 gun laws already on the books?

          • ValleyJim

            20000? Really? I seriously doubt there are that many. That would mean that there are 400 laws on the books per state. I know VA for example doesn’t. No where near that many. And you saying it is just the beginning for them coming to take your precious guns is a complete straw man. Just as saying that Clinton was going to try, Obama was going to try. That is just a plot for the gun and ammo makers to make more money. I have always said that an AK-47 is lousy for hunting and home defense. I would much rather have a 40 cal acp or something similar. Good stopping power, hard for someone to grab and take away from you. For hunting a .30-.30 is about the biggest thing that I have ever used.

            • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

              > your precious guns

              Not so much, I have few, and nothing that had been on Feinstein’s latest list. What is precious is the egalitarian power sharing of our social contract. If the government was willing for its agents to also be banned from carrying guns, such as in Iceland, I’d be fine with that.

              Equality is the watchword. “All men are created equal.”

              > And you saying it is just the beginning for them coming to take your precious guns is a complete straw man.

              No strawman. Admitted, on camera.

              Mattera: So the assault weapons ban is just the beginning?
              Schakowsky: Oh absolutely. I mean, I’m against handguns.

              Dem Rep. Jan Schakowsky: Assault Weapons Ban “Just The Beginning”
              youtube.com/watch?v=BVz2lHODQvs

      • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

        The Second Amendment isn’t about hunting or sporting. It is about egalitarian power sharing of the primary source of the State’s power, the gun.

        Our nation’s social contract calls for that power to be shared instead of concentrated into a few hands.

        It is a rather Indian-style way of arranging society, since the US Constitution was modeled after the Iroquois Confederacy. No “chief” had the right to prohibit another Indian from owning a bow and arrow.

        If you even want to call it uncivilized, that’s fine, realizing how many anthropologists view civilization:

        “Civilization originates in conquest abroad and repression at home.” ~Stanley Diamond (1981) In Search of the Primitive: A Critique of Civilization, p.1, first sentence

        • ValleyJim

          Hate to break it to you but that is a modern view of the second amendment. It was originally written for protection of the country since there was not a standing army at the time. Hence the part of the second amendment that all of the pro gun lobby seem to forget “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free
          state…”

          • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

            Modern view? Jefferson wrote “all men are created equal.” Just because you’re getting your first clue regarding egalitarianism doesn’t make historical fact “modern.”

            Yep, a “free state” is one where the people have power. and political power always comes from a gun, which is why the founders did not want a Standing Army. So let’s get rid of it. War is a racket, and the military-industrial complex is who designed the weapons that people want banned anyway.

  • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

    I do not have the power to single-handedly change history. But I will be a public voice saying “No!” when I see these sorts of things transpiring, when I see signs of history repeating itself. And thanks to today’s technology, each voice can be heard not only in its own location, but around the world.

    And where will your voice be, James, when people single out Christian bakeries, photographers, or otherwise, demanding they provide services for events they know they object to?

    I seem to recall a recent history of laws in secular and state-atheist countries that were cooked up in order to systematically force Christians to betray their beliefs, to intellectually bully them in the public sphere. Let me guess – it happened in the past, but couldn’t happen today, in the United States?

    By the way – I love showing the ‘NO GAYS ALLOWED’ sign without context, save for in the comments. Especially since part of the reply of people on this front is that their opponents are misrepresenting their views as well as the law – that they don’t want to refuse service to ‘gays’, but to particular ceremonies and acts.

    But sometimes an issue is far too important to judiciously represent your opponents, right?

    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

      > demanding they provide services

      Isn’t that precisely what sit-ins were all about? Demanding business provide services equally to all their neighbors?

      > force Christians to betray their beliefs

      Weren’t blacks considered to be cursed by god, the mark of cain and all that, and “forced” associating with them construed as a religious rights issue?

      I think Dr. McGrath’s comparison to the civil rights era is apropos.

      • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

        Isn’t that precisely what sit-ins were all about? Demanding business provide services equally to all their neighbors?

        Not at all – as was obvious, when you quote my full statement: And where will your voice be, James, when people single out Christian bakeries, photographers, or otherwise, demanding they provide services for events they know they object to?

        Services for events they know they object to.

        Or are you telling me that you’re completely in favor of people refusing to serve a particular event, so long as they’re demonstrable willing to serve particular people? Say, if I am willing to make and sell a cake to a gay man or woman or even couple, but not for a same-sex wedding?

        Weren’t blacks considered to be cursed by god, the mark of cain and all that, and “forced” associating with them construed as a religious rights issue?

        Once again, I am discussing acts, not individuals.

        But if you’re willing to say ‘Sure, it should be completely legal for a business to refuse to take part in a same-sex wedding’, wonderful – then we’re on the same side. We shall overcome, brother!

        • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

          You’re wrong. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 banned discrimination based on race, color, religion, or national origin, as JFK called for, “giving all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public—hotels, restaurants, theaters, retail stores, and similar establishments” in 1963.

          It doesn’t apply to sexual orientation—yet—but your bigotry is isn’t viewed any different by many Americans than historical bigotry against blacks, Jews, or the Irish.

          Do you want to walk into a grocery store some day and refuse to be served because you’re a white christian? Would you be ok with a proprietor doing that to you?

          • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

            You’re wrong. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 banned discrimination based on race, color, religion, or national origin,

            That’s nice. I guess I have to repeat myself again: And where will your voice be, James, when people single out Christian bakeries, photographers, or otherwise, demanding they provide services for events they know they object to?

            It doesn’t apply to sexual orientation—yet—but your bigotry

            My bigotry? You can be a bigot for opposing acts? I suppose that makes you a bigot as well, since you’re obviously opposing some acts yourself.

            Do you want to walk into a grocery store some day and refuse to be served because you’re a white christian? Would you be ok with a proprietor doing that to you?

            Once again, the discussion is not about services owing to who someone is, but owing to providing a service for an act or event.

            Let’s take a hypothetical case: a Christian baker. A gay person walks in and says, “I’d like to buy a cake! I’m gay by the way!” The Christian says, “Certainly. I’d be happy to provide it.” The person gets their cake, they pay, and on they go.

            Then someone else walks into the bakery. They say, ‘I’m straight. I’d like to buy a cake for my wedding – I’m a man, but I’m marrying another man. He’s straight too. We don’t plan on having sex, but we think it would be mutually advantageous to be married.’ The baker says, “Oh, I’m sorry, but I don’t want to supply a cake to that wedding. That goes against my religious beliefs about marriage.”

            You think the Christian should be forced to make the cake?

            • Kubricks_Rube

              Does the same distinction apply to anniversary cakes? How about hotel rooms? Or just the honeymoon suite? Can I deny spousal benefits to my employees married to someone of the same sex? I mean, my religion doesn’t recognize their marriages. Or what if I’m not the business owner but merely an employee? If my baker boss signs on for a same-sex wedding, can I refuse to deliver the cake? What if I’m an IRS agent that has to audit a return jointly filed by a same-sex couple? How can I sign my name to their return without affirming their so-called marriage? Or as a salesperson at a wedding dress boutique, can I refuse service to a woman I learn will be marrying another woman? And what if she’s divorced! I don’t care if she’s marrying a man or a woman, the wedding won’t be legit.

              • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                Does the same distinction apply to anniversary cakes?

                Presumably.

                How about hotel rooms?

                Are there special hotel rooms just for married people? A serious question – perhaps there are.

                Can I deny spousal benefits to my employees married to someone of the same sex?

                Can you deny spousal benefits to polygamists?

                Or what if I’m not the business owner but merely an employee? If my baker boss signs on for a same-sex wedding, can I refuse to deliver the cake?

                That’s an interesting question. Do you believe people should be forbidden from being fired for their political beliefs and acts? As if right now, there are close to zero protections for such.

                What if I’m an IRS agent that has to audit a return jointly filed by a same-sex couple? How can I sign my name to their return without affirming their so-called marriage?

                See above.

                Or as a salesperson at a wedding dress boutique, can I refuse service to a woman I learn will be marrying another woman?

                See above. Notice we’re now talking about employees’ relations to their employers, not individuals who own their own businesses.

                And what if she’s divorced! I don’t care if she’s marrying a man or a woman, the wedding won’t be legit.

                Indeed. That wouldn’t be an act of bigotry at all, would it? Regardless of what you think of such – because the problem is the act, not the individual.

                Thank you for asking those questions. They were easy to answer and turn around, which only helps me make my case here.

            • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

              “Acts” or “events” don’t buy services; people buy goods and services.

              Yes, you’re a bi-got. A By-God! who by your religious prejudices treats other people with intolerance.

              “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

              That concept you despise.

              • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                “Acts” or “events” don’t buy services; people buy goods and services.

                ‘Acts’ and ‘events’ are things people engage in. Some good, some foul. Are you honestly trying to tell me that you can’t support an act or event? Seriously?

                I already gave an example of a hypothetical baker who clearly will happily sell a cake to a gay man or woman, but will not sell a cake for a same-sex wedding, even if both individuals are straight.

                Are they bigoted? And should they be forced to sell the cake?

                Yes, you’re a bi-got. A By-God! who by your religious prejudices treats other people with intolerance.

                Funny. I thought I opposed certain sexual acts, regardless of the sexual orientations of those involved, and did so largely on the basis of natural law and secular beliefs, even if my religious beliefs were intertwined with such.

                I notice you won’t answer my question, by the way. I understand – it was too hard for you, because intellectually there’s only one obvious answer to give me, which won’t be the answer you want. And this is far too emotional a question to let mere reason intervene.

                That concept you despise.

                Two issues.

                1) You’re saying I despise equal treatment of individuals because I am a religious person who disagrees with your acts. Sounds mighty bigoted.

                2) JFK was a Catholic as well. The law in question never protected gay marriages, obviously. So clearly it was a bigoted law, passed by a bigot.

                It sounds like, based on your beliefs, you owe bigots a debt of gratitude.

                • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                  > I opposed certain sexual acts

                  Then don’t do them. Making a cake isn’t a sex act.

                  > The law in question never protected…

                  …All Americans? That was JFK’s intent. If you want to create another aspect of bigotry, the law can address that as well.

                  “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                  • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                    Then don’t do them. Making a cake isn’t a sex act.

                    But making a cake for a given event is participation in that event. I’d rather not do that.

                    You, however, believe people should be forced to. Why is that?

                    All Americans? That was JFK’s intent.

                    Indeed. As I said, JFK and me? Same religion. Apparently, he was a bigot. Me, not necessarily it seems – since my views about marriage and sexuality stem in large part from philosophy. And your own bigotry is largely directed against religion.

                    Here’s something the bigots of the past and present have to say to you, Brian: “You’re welcome! Thanks, we’re glad you like our laws so much. Now, can you please live up to the spirit of them, and not cast people who refuse to participate in acts as bigoted? In fact, do you think you have it in you to not force them to participate in those acts?”

                    Do you think you have it in you, Brian? Or is your worldview and sense of self-identity so shallow that you cannot cope with a world where people may choose not to participate in acts you want them to, even if they are willing to serve you in or through their business otherwise?

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Making a cake for one of we “all Americans” isn’t participating in a sex act. You keep conflating the two.

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963
                      youtube.com/watch?v=sOGDSgyeHPM

                    • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                      Making a cake for one of those “all Americans” isn’t participating in a sex act. You keep conflating the two.

                      Making a cake for a wedding, however… is participating in the wedding. You keep ignoring this.

                      Why is it important to you that a baker who will happily sell a cake to a gay man or woman, but who wouldn’t sell a cake to two straight men marrying each other, be forced to do that?

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                      Funny how the law didn’t include gay marriages, eh Or, indeed, gay people?

                      Like I said: a bigoted law, passed by a bigoted member of a bigoted religion, according to you. You are indebted to bigots.

                      Now, I ask my question again. And I will keep asking it, until you answer:

                      Let’s take a hypothetical case: a Christian baker. A gay person walks in and says, “I’d like to buy a cake! I’m gay by the way!” The Christian says, “Certainly. I’d be happy to provide it.” The person gets their cake, they pay, and on they go.

                      Then someone else walks into the bakery. They say, ‘I’m straight. I’d like to buy a cake for my wedding – I’m a man, but I’m marrying another man. He’s straight too. We don’t plan on having sex, but we think it would be mutually advantageous to be married.’ The baker says, “Oh, I’m sorry, but I don’t want to supply a cake to that wedding. That goes against my religious beliefs about marriage.”

                      You think the Christian should be forced to make the cake?

                      I’d also add – is the Christian bigoted for refusing to make and sell the cake?

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Nobody forces a cake baker to make cakes; they advertise that they’ll do it.

                      Why aren’t you willing to serve “all Americans” at your place of business?

                      Your excuse is your religious bigotry.

                      That same religious bigotry is what was behind the bigotry—racial, religious, national—addressed in the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

                    • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                      Nobody forces a cake baker to make cakes; they advertise that they’ll do it.

                      They are forced to take part in acts and ceremonies they’d rather not, even when they’re more than happy to serve those individuals as individuals. And a hateful, bigoted group of people are keen on forcing them to do exactly that.

                      And you know what? I just want to show everyone how quickly and easily the entire line of argument about discrimination against people due to their sexual orientation was dispatched here. All the cries of ‘bigotry’ turn out to be nonsense – in fact, they turn out to be a stock line from bigots.

                      Your excuse is your religious bigotry.

                      No, my reasoning is philosophical, metaphysical and religious – and all I defend here is the ability for people to not be forced to, in the course of their business, take part in acts and activities they find morally objectionable.

                      Your bigotry, however, has no excuse.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Baking Cake ≠ Forced Sex Acts

                      Because of your bigotry, you refuse to serve all Americans.

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                    • James Scott

                      So I can force you to pray or take part in a religious event against your will & personal beliefs because I am not forcing you to have sex?

                      No? Then why do you think you can do that to me?

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      So I can…. How did that follow? You sure can put the “non” in “non sequitur.”

                    • James Scott

                      Your the guy who believes it’s OK to force me to bake a cake for a same sex wedding against my will & that it is OK because that is not the same as forcing me to have sex with someone who is the same gender as myself.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      If you don’t like the laws of a nation that prohibits businesses from bigotry based on color, race, religion, or national origin (or sexual orientation) then you’re free to move. This isn’t Cuba.

                      I think the libertarians have found a spot for you:

                      • Stateless in Somalia, and Loving It | Mises Daily (2006)
                      • The Anarchy Advantage in Somalia | Reason (2006)

                    • James Scott

                      Civil libertarian not libertarian. You are right this is not Cuba but when fascists like yourself get their way it will soon become like Cuba but without the awesome cigars.

                      You proud of that buddy?

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Funny how civil libertarians bigots keep tossing off accusations of “fascism” to describe this:

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                      Are you proud of being a libertarian bigot who doesn’t want to serve all Americans, “buddy?”

                    • Andrew Dowling

                      “But making a cake for a given event is participation in that event.”

                      No, it’s not.

                    • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                      No, it’s not.

                      Sell someone a weapon, knowing full well they plan on using it to commit a murder. If you can sleep peacefully at night because ‘Well, I sell to individuals, I don’t participate in acts’, I humbly suggest something is broken in you.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Oh great, now a wedding is equivalent to conspiracy to murder. And then evangelicals dare accuse people of “relativism.”

                    • James Scott

                      No murder is immoral and so is having gay sex or sanctioning it according to my Catholic Faith. So forcing me to become a direct material participant in it is the equivalent to forcing me to act immorally against my will.

                      Why such a fascist buddy?

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      If you think the US is immoral for keeping bigots like you from running the show, then feel free to leave. Maybe Iran would suit you better. You’re psychologically projecting your own fascism, “buddy.”

                      History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance of which their civil as well as religiousleaders will always avail themselves for their own purposes. ~Thomas Jefferson to Alexander von Humboldt, Dec. 6, 1813.

                    • James Scott

                      Didn’t Jefferson own slaves? Pius VII condemned the slave trade in Jefferson’s day.

                      Your the one who wants to fine Christians for refusing to bake cakes or photograph same sex weddings. I am not for fining anyone.

                      Therefore your the fascist. Not I.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                      Can you live up to it? Or are you going to continue to be a bigot?

                  • James Scott

                    >Then don’t do them. Making a cake isn’t a sex act.

                    So in your new fascist society every Jew can be forced to bake a cake for a Jews for Jesus evangelization outreach?

                    The liberals of yesterday in my day where true civil libertarians.

                    This present generation are nothing but brown shirt totalitarians.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      > your new fascist society

                      The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is fascist? How so?

                    • James Scott

                      The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is not fascist. It doesn’t force me to participate in gay weddings against my will.

                      Your the one here who supports fascism buddy because you wish to force Christians to bake cakes for and photograph same sex weddings.

                      Like I said I am a civil libertarian. I would never force a Jewish photographer to photograph a Jews for Jesus religious even. I would never force an Atheist to pray.

                      You OTOH clearly wish to create a society where that type of oppression is possible.

                      My way saves gay freedom. Yours leads to totalitarian slavery and oppression.

                      You proud of that?

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      The Civil Rights Act of 1964 is not fascist. Glad to hear it, but your ilk still thinks so. Bigotry against race and nation wraps itself in the same religious pretexts you use to excuse your current bigotry.

                      We’ve known that for quite a while too, after seeing your bloody results in Europe.

                      “Can a free government possibly exist with the Roman Catholic religion?” ~John Adams, letter to Thomas Jefferson, May 19, 1821

                    • James Scott

                      I love the how I am accused of bigotry by an anti-Catholic bigot who cites the anti-Catholic bigotry of white slave owners who owned blacks.

                      “We’ve known that for quite a while too, after seeing your bloody results in Europe.”

                      Somebody has been reading his latest issue of Chick comics.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                      Live up to that standard.

                      P.S. Try reading chapter 7: “The Ruler of the Whole World: The Invention of the Totalitarian State by the First Christian Emperor of Rome” by Jonathan Kirsch (2004) God Against The Gods: The History of the War Between Monotheism and Polytheism. Viking .

                    • James Scott

                      I agree with JFK but I doubt JFK thought that meant a Jewish baker can be forced to bake for a Jews For Jesus event or a Christian for a same sex wedding.

                      He was an old guard Democrat who believed in civil liberties unlike you.

                    • James Scott

                      >Bigotry against race and nation wraps itself in the same religious pretexts you use to excuse your current bigotry.

                      The only bigotry we see here is your neo-know nothing mishigoss citing white slave owners.

                      QUOTE”I am not a Know-Nothing. That is certain. How could I be? How can any one who abhors the oppression of negroes, be in favor of degrading classes of white people? Our progress in degeneracy appears to me to be pretty rapid. As a nation, we begin by declaring that “all men are created equal.” We now practically read it “all men are created equal, except negroes.” When the Know-Nothings get control, it will read “all men are created equal, except negroes, and foreigners, and catholics.” When it comes to this I should prefer emigrating to some country where they make no pretence of loving liberty-to Russia, for instance, where despotism can be taken pure, and without the base alloy of hypocracy.”END QUOTE Abraham Lincoln

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      The only bigotry we see here is yours, Mr. Know Nothing. You want to deny all Americans service.

                      Here’s the standard: “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                      Live up to it, ok?

                    • James Scott

                      Sorry Fascist boy but I simply want to protect the civil rights of all Americans to opt out of activities that contradict the motions of their conscience.

                      Your the fascist who wants to FORCE PARTICIPATION in them.

                      Today you are punishing Christians for not attending or servicing same sex weddings.

                      Tomorrow you will be punishing Atheists for not praying or attending religious services.

                      Now go back too your Hitler Youth meeting.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Oh yeah, JFK, leader of the Hitler youth….to bigots like you.

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                    • James Scott

                      Learn to read Goober. JFK is on my side not yours and your Socially liberal Klansmen meme.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      You’re the bigot who doesn’t want to serve all Americans. Unless you’ve changed your mind now.

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                    • James Scott

                      I will serve all Americans but no American or anybody else will make me do anything against my conscience and I would not ask the same of any American.

                      You don’t believe in the rights of conscience and it seems you don’t have one.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      James Scott: I will serve all Americans

                      Finally, some good news! I guess we now have no disagreement.

                    • James Scott

                      You left out the part where I said “but no American or anybody else will make me do anything against my conscience “.

                      You reject the right of conscience enshrined in the First Amendment.

                      Canada or China is best suited for you not America.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      You’re just a Marxist anarchist who can’t voluntarily support laws. The US really doesn’t suit your fancy.

                      “The voluntary support of laws, formed by persons of their own choice, distinguishes peculiarly the minds capable of self-government. The contrary spirit is anarchy, which of necessity produces despotism.” ~Thomas Jefferson to Philadelphia Citizens, 1809.

                    • James Scott

                      I am a free market Capitalist and a Reaganite.

                      These are from Thomas Jefferson as well:

                      To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.” – 1777

                      “It is inconsistent with the spirit of our laws and Constitution to force tender consciences.” – 1781

                      “But our rulers can have authority over such natural rights only as we have submitted to them. The rights of conscience we never submitted, we could not submit. We are answerable for them to God.” – 1782

                      In this the white slave owner is right on the money.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      If you’re a fan of the free market, start acting like it. Sell, baby, sell! To all Americans!

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                    • James Scott

                      Sorry I choose not too and you have no right to force me to do otherwise even thought you erroneously believe you do.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      You talk out of both sides of your mouth. You said you would serve all Americans. Now you say you choose not to. Which way is it?

                    • James Scott

                      Some more Jefferson.

                      It behooves every man who values liberty of conscience for himself, to resist invasions of it in the case of others; or their case may, by change of circumstances, become their own. It behooves him, too, in his own case, to give no example of concession, betraying the common right of independent opinion, by answering questions of faith, which the laws have left between God and himself.” – 1803

                      “No provision in our Constitution ought to be dearer to man than that which protects the “rights of conscience against the enterprises of the civil authority.” – 1809

                      “This country which has given to the world the example of physical liberty owes it that of moral emancipation also.” – 1821

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Worship whom you want, it’s the America Jefferson helped design. Nice to see you quoting him, instead of trying to denigrate him as you did previously. Just don’t be a bigot to other people. Why is this so difficult?

                    • James Scott

                      Says the anti-Catholic bigot! Respect conscience and uphold it in law.

                      Why is that difficult?

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      I’ll gladly serve catholics, and have. I’m no bigot like you, who does not want to serve all Americans.

                    • James Scott

                      Rather your the bigot who wants to force others to do his bidding against their consciences.

                      Your right to swing your hand ends at the tip of my nose.

                      My service ends when you try to force me to go against my religion.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Apparently, you’re an anarchist, who has no respect for a nation’s laws. I suppose next, you’re going to complain that taxes are theft, and all government is evil. Have fun with that, Mr. Marxist of the Right.

                    • James Scott

                      In my America you are free to not bake a cake for my Catholic events which you object so strongly.

                      In your “America” I throw your commie anti-Catholic bigoted arse in jail and see that you are fined if you don’t.

                      So which of us is against freedom? Clearly you.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      > In my America you are free to not bake a cake for my Catholic events

                      Wrong. Look up the Civil Rights act of 1964.

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                      I’ll gladly sell a product or provide a serve to you with my business, just like I would all Americans.

                    • James Scott

                      I did & it clearly doesn’t give you the right to trample the consciences of Christians.

                      So you will sell to anybody? Well that is your choice but all the same you will take away choice and conscience from others.

                      Your proud of that.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      JFK trampled your rights, huh?

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                    • James Scott

                      How does that give me the right to force an Atheist shop owner to participate in a religious ceremony?

                      It doesn’t.

                      Same with a Christian who doesn’t want to photograph a same sex wedding.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Why do you remain too bigoted to serve all Americans?

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                    • James Scott

                      So an Orthodox Jewish photographer who doesn’t want to photograph a Jews for Jesus event(because belief in Jesus is against his Faith) is a bigot against Christians in your world?

                      You need to graduate high school son.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      You need to read the Civil Rights act of 1964. Religious bigotry in business dealings is illegal.

                    • James Scott

                      Bigotry is not a crime & the CRA 1964 never says it is rather unjust discrimination is a crime.

                      It is not unjust for a Jew to refrain from participating in a Christian event. Nor is it unjust for a Christian to refrain from participating in a same sex wedding.

                      CRA 1964 did not undo the First Amendment. It presuposes it.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Baking a cake isn’t participating in the wedding. Just like selling diesel isn’t participating in mowing hay.

                    • James Scott

                      You are basically a Social Liberal without any liberal civil libertarian beliefs. That is just pathetic.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Wrong. Actually, I’m a registered Republican and NRA member. I’m just not a bigot. Problem?

                    • James Scott

                      So I am right. You combine republican dogmatism with social liberalism.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      So you’re wrong. I just exclude bigotry like yours.

                    • James Scott

                      Even “bigots”(like anti-Catholic ones like yourself) have rights. That is your problem. You don’t believe in civil rights.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      It is you who is too bigoted to believe in civil rights.

                      “…all Americans the right to be served in facilities which are open to the public…” ~JFK, 1963

                    • James Scott

                      You really have to offer something better then this Monty Python John cleese argument sketch meme of yours.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Oh, JFK is Monty Python now. You made a funny!

                    • James Scott

                      Your 5th grade level reading comprehension skills are beyond entertaining.

                    • James Scott

                      You are basically like a Fascist Conservative from only socially liberal not conservative.

                      I am a socially conservative civil libertarian. I believe in freedom you simply don’t.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      You’re a Marxist wannabee.

                      “This is no surprise, as libertarianism is basically the Marxism of the Right.” ~Robert Locke, MARXISM OF THE RIGHT, The American Conservative, 2005
                      theamericanconservative.com/articles/marxism-of-the-right/

                    • James Scott

                      No I am a Mark Levine Fan. Civil libertarianism is not libertarianism.

                      Wow you are too thick to know the difference eh Goober?

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      Oh. You should try being a fan of Jesus some day.

                    • James Scott

                      I am a fan of Jesus I am Catholic after all. I belong to the actual Church Jesus founded.

                      Not some spin off of a spin off of a spin off.

                      I prefer originals over cheap knock offs.

                    • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Censorship Censored

                      No bigot like you is a fan of Jesus.

                    • James Scott

                      Go French kiss Luther prot boy.

                • Kubricks_Rube

                  Are they bigoted? And should they be forced to sell the cake?

                  Yes. Discriminating against people based on the gender of their spouse is bigoted. Now, your hypothetical is a bit more complicated, as it suggests the possibility of fraud. But that possibility applies no matter the gender of the two participants.

                  Also, you seem to misunderstand the point of public accommodation laws. In isolation it seems reasonable enough to ask a same-sex couple to get a cake from a friendly baker rather than one who’d rather discriminate against them. But in many places they’d be hard pressed to find that friendly baker. And before you invoke the triviality of cakes and flowers (which you may not do since they are nontrivial enough to count as “support” for an event in your mind), substitute job, apartment, house, power of attorney, or any other area of life where someone may decide that accommodation means legitimizing a marriage they don’t accept. Accommodation laws, labor laws and anti-discrimination laws protect people in all these areas- and they should do so no matter the gender of one’s spouse.

                  • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                    Yes. Discriminating against people based on the gender of their spouse is bigoted.

                    Except that’s clearly not happening.

                    Now, your hypothetical is a bit more complicated, as it suggests the possibility of fraud. But that possibility applies no matter the gender of the two participants.

                    Fraud? I’m sorry. Are you saying two men shouldn’t be allowed to be married if they were both straight and considered the arrangement advantageous?

                    Sounds mighty bigoted according to the standards around here.

                    In isolation it seems reasonable enough to ask a same-sex couple to get a cake from a friendly baker rather than one who’d rather discriminate against them. But in many places they’d be hard pressed to find that friendly baker.

                    Oh, so you think that it should be legal if the baker can simply show that there are other bakers in the area who would willingly supply the business? Interesting.

                    And before you invoke the triviality of cakes and flowers (which you may not do since they are nontrivial enough to count as “support” for an event in your mind), substitute job, apartment, house, power of attorney, or any other area of life where someone may decide that accommodation means legitimizing a marriage they don’t accept.

                    My argument wasn’t hinged on perceived ‘triviality’. I was illustrating that ‘discrimination against someone because of their sexual orientation’ was not operative in the example I provided. The baker would happily bake cakes for avowed homosexuals. They would not bake cakes for heterosexual males who were getting married. Clearly, it’s not the orientation that’s the issue there.

                    You, however, made the very interesting move of implying that two straight men shouldn’t be allowed to get married if they don’t plan on having sex with each other. Do you care to defend that (by this place’s standards) bigotry here?

                    • Kubricks_Rube

                      I didn’t say two straight men couldn’t get married if they don’t plan to have sex. I thought there were rules about consummation being necessary but google tells me that’s not a thing anymore, so cool. That makes it easier. Yes, it’s bigoted to discriminate based on the gender of someone’s (soon-to-be) spouse.

                    • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                      Yes, it’s bigoted to discriminate based on the gender of someone’s (soon-to-be) spouse.

                      Which, again, is not happening.

                      The shop would sell to a woman marrying a man. The shop would sell to a man marrying a woman.

                      So gender of the spouse is irrelevant here. What does matter is the combined genders – but that matters regardless of their orientation.

                      It trivially follows that they are not discriminating against any individuals here, nor are they discriminating against anyone on the basis of their sexual orientation. The orientation is literally irrelevant.

                    • Kubricks_Rube

                      Slate recently had a piece that explains what you’re missing here. It’s about marriage laws but the idea is the same

                      Consider a typical law that bans same-sex marriage, like Oklahoma’s constitutional amendment struck down Tuesday. It states, “Marriage in this state shall consist only of the union of one man and one woman.” Under this law, can gays and lesbians marry? Absolutely. In fact, right now, gays and lesbians can get married in every single state in this country. The problem, of course, is that gays and lesbians cannot marry the person they want to marry. They are perfectly free to marry anyone of the opposite sex, but not someone of the same sex.

                      And this is very clearly sex discrimination. None of the state bans on same-sex marriage contain any language about sexual orientation. Rather, the language is entirely about sex—“one man and one woman.” A simple hypothetical makes this entirely clear. Imagine three people—Nancy, Bill, and Tom. Tom, lucky guy that he is, is the object of both Nancy’s and Bill’s affection. Based on the language of the law, which of Nancy or Bill can marry Tom? Answering that question requires no knowledge of Nancy’s or Bill’s sexual orientation. All you need to know is Nancy’s and Bill’s sex.

                      Knowing that makes the answer obvious. Nancy, a woman, can marry Tom, but Bill, a man, cannot. Put differently, Nancy can do something (marry Tom) that Bill cannot, simply because Nancy is a woman and Bill is a man. In the language of anti-discrimination law, a man is disabled from doing something a woman can do, solely based on his sex. That is sex discrimination.

                    • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                      And this is very clearly sex discrimination.

                      Let’s take this to be true for the sake of argument. The result is a net loss for you: sex discrimination has plenty – and I mean plenty – of contexts where it is entirely legal. You can keep men out of women’s bathrooms. You can keep women out of men’s bathrooms. And so on, and so forth.

                      Which means this is no longer an open and shut ‘You’re discriminating! That’s wrong!’ case – and most importantly, you’ve silently conceded that bars on same-sex marriage need not be motivated by discrimination against sexual orientation.

                    • Kubricks_Rube

                      No, what I’ve conceded (though that’s the wrong word as none of this is new) is that the rationalizations and attempted legal loopholes used by gay rights opponents to avoid admitting to orientation discrimination run up against the much tougher and more generally accepted restrictions on gender discrimination, which weakens- not strengthens- your case (bathrooms notwithstanding, as equal if not identical accomodation is still required). Further, as the courts are ever-increasingly acknowledging, whatever the theroretical arguments made by opponents of gay rights, what we’re talking about is functionally indistinguishable from discrimination based on sexual orientation. That is the practical application of these attempted legal loopholes. Further still, this distinction between discriminating against individuals and discriminating against acts serves as an implicit (and sometimes explicit) denial of sexual orientation as a legitimate construct, which exposes the dubious legal (not to mention biological, psychological, sociological, historical, etc) position that this distinction without a difference relies upon.

                    • James Scott

                      That is so bigoted of you telling me I have to have sex to make my marriage valid. What if my male or female spouse mutually agree with me not to ever have sex who are you to tell us we have to or that we are not really married unless we are?

                      You Consummationist bigots have no right to define marriage for us anti-consummationists!

            • Andrew Dowling

              It’s not the baker’s business what the cake will be used for. Teenagers may use eggs sold by a farmer to egg someone’s house, but no-one would ever accuse the egg seller in turn “supporting” the egging of the house!

              • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                It’s not the baker’s business what the cake will be used for.

                Funny, then, how the bakers keep being told exactly that. Rather unavoidable too, if they want the cake made for a wedding.

                Teenagers may use eggs sold by a farmer to egg someone’s house, but no-one would ever accuse the egg seller in turn “supporting” the egging of the house!

                They would, if the farmer knew what the eggs were being used for and sold them anyway.

                • Andrew Dowling

                  So what? It could be a fake wedding. It could be Halloween. It could be any number of things. The baker is in the business of baking cakes and selling them. What if a regular non-wedding cake were used in some (creative) sex act between two cohabitating heterosexual people? Is the baker “participating” in their sex act, even if they told him beforehand it would be used in an X-rated way? If you answer yes, that’s mighty strange logic.

                  • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                    So what? It could be a fake wedding. It could be Halloween. It could be any number of things. The baker is in the business of baking cakes and selling them.

                    Sure is. And they should have the right to choose what activities they take part in with their services.

                    What if a regular non-wedding cake were used in some (creative) sex act between two cohabitating heterosexual people? Is the baker “participating” in their sex act, even if they told him beforehand it would be used in an X-rated way?

                    There’s nothing strange about the logic. Yes, they are participating – they are providing the means to get it done.

                    If a group of high school kids comes to me wanting to buy a carton of eggs, and I know they’re going to use them to egg your car, am I wrong for refusing to sell them? If I did sell them, willingly – let’s say I wasn’t forced – would I be at all culpable for their act?

            • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-Pieret/100000023960330 John Pieret

              The baker says, “Oh, I’m sorry, but I don’t want to supply a cake to that wedding. That goes against my religious beliefs about marriage.”

              The objection to interracial marriages was (and still is, in some quarters) that they are acts or events that violate “sincerely held religious beliefs.” Just so we are clear, do you think a baker providing a service of “public accommodation” (supported by the the general public in many ways … police and fire protection; roads, trains and other transportation systems; the monetary system etc., etc.) has to be allowed to refuse service to a couple wanting the act of getting married solely based on the skin color of the participants?

              You think the Christian should be forced to make the cake?

              I can’t speak for James but, yes, if you want to participate in an economy, the society that supports that economy can make some rules about your providing those services on an equal basis to everyone and not discriminate on a basis that has nothing to do with the services themselves. The option for the “Christian” or anyone else who thinks that baking a cake is somehow an act of conscience, is to stop participating in the economy or, at least, to find a different line of work.

              Ministers and churches can, naturally, refuse to marry anyone they deem “unfit” under the rules of their religion … unless, of course, you want to argue that religions are just another business …

              • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                Just so we are clear, do you think a baker providing a service of “public accommodation” (supported by the the general public in many ways … police and fire protection; roads, trains and other transportation systems; the monetary system etc., etc.) has to be allowed to refuse service to a couple wanting the act of getting married solely based on the skin color of the participants?

                Invalid comparison straightaway – the problem here isn’t sexual orientation. Certainly not race.

                I will admit, by the way, that I believe in age discrimination. For instance, I don’t think 30 year old men should be legally able to have sex with 8 year old children. You agree?

                I can’t speak for James but, yes, if you want to participate in an economy, the society that supports that economy can make some rules about your providing those services on an equal basis to everyone and not discriminate on a basis that has nothing to do with the services themselves. The option for the “Christian” or anyone else who thinks that baking a cake is somehow an act of conscience, is to stop participating in the economy or, at least, to find a different line of work.

                And there we have it: yes. For all that talk about civil rights and the importance of being fair and equal and nice to everyone, what you’re saying is that Christians cannot live according to their religious principles if you disapprove of them and can get the legal power to enforce your will. It doesn’t even matter if the couple in question wants the cake from that place, really – they can be deciding ‘Heh, we know they’re Christians who disapprove of gay marriage. Let’s force them to do this. Let’s make them squirm.’

                That kind of thinking gets a +1 from James McGrath.

                Now, with that in mind – with it being once and for all established that you are willing to force religious people, by threat of law (which itself means threat of violence, imprisonment, and confiscation of their property), to do things that go against their moral beliefs, if only to satisfy the petty desires* of people who disagree with them and want to cause them harm, I have a simple question.

                Why in the world should I care about Russia’s laws against gay propaganda? It’s just another instance of a group with power imposing their will on an extreme minority – in their case, with the backing of over 80% of their own populace.

                (* And before you say the desires aren’t petty – we’re not only talking about wedding cakes and wedding photographs. We’re talking about individuals choosing those specific places purely to force known Christians to knuckle under.)

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-Pieret/100000023960330 John Pieret

                  Invalid comparison straightaway – the problem here isn’t sexual orientation. Certainly not race.

                  Why? Just because you say so? Of course the problem is sexual orientation. Gay people can’t marry the people they want to marry, just as people of one race can’t marry the people of another race they want to marry.

                  I don’t think 30 year old men should be legally able to have sex with 8 year old children. You agree?

                  Now THAT’S an invalid comparison. 8 year old children can’t have “informed consent” to have sex, much less to marry. Are you going to trot out the “comparison” of people who want to marry horses next?

                  For all that talk about civil rights and the importance of being fair and equal and nice to everyone, what you’re saying is that Christians cannot live according to their religious principles if you disapprove of them and can get the legal power to enforce your will.

                  YOU were the one that said there was no problem selling a car to gay people or forcing Christians to do so. Which is it? Are Christians or any other bigoted group allowed to “live according to their religious principles” and discriminate against people because of their “beliefs” or not?

                  We’re talking about individuals choosing those specific places purely to force known Christians to knuckle under.

                  YOU’RE talking about that. Do you have ANY proof that such a scenario has occurred? I could propose just as likely a scenario … that a Christian takes a job and then waits to the last minute to decline to do the service, knowing that the gay couple couldn’t replace it at that point, to satisfy the petty desires of a Christian who disagrees with gays.

                  You delusion of vindictiveness is not the arbiter of what the law is or should be.

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-Pieret/100000023960330 John Pieret

                  Invalid comparison straightaway – the problem here isn’t sexual orientation. Certainly not race.

                  Why? Just because you say so? Of course the problem is sexual orientation. Gay people can’t marry the people they want to marry, just as people of one race can’t marry the people of another race they want to marry.

                  I don’t think 30 year old men should be legally able to have sex with 8 year old children. You agree?

                  Now THAT’S an invalid comparison. 8 year old children can’t have “informed consent” to have sex, much less to marry. Are you going to trot out the “comparison” of people who want to marry horses next?

                  For all that talk about civil rights and the importance of being fair and equal and nice to everyone, what you’re saying is that Christians cannot live according to their religious principles if you disapprove of them and can get the legal power to enforce your will.

                  YOU were the one that said there was no problem selling a car to gay people or forcing Christians to do so. Which is it? Are Christians or any other bigoted group allowed to “live according to their religious principles” and discriminate against people because of their “beliefs” or not?

                  We’re talking about individuals choosing those specific places purely to force known Christians to knuckle under.

                  YOU’RE talking about that. Do you have ANY proof that such a scenario has occurred? I could propose just as likely a scenario … that a Christian takes a job and then waits to the last minute to decline to do the service, knowing that the gay couple couldn’t replace it at that point, to satisfy the petty desires of a Christian who disagrees with gays.

                  Your delusion of vindictiveness is not the arbiter of what the law is or should be.

                  • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-Pieret/100000023960330 John Pieret

                    Opps! Sorry about the double post, James.

                    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

                      No problem, and you should be able to delete one if you ever notice it happens again (I did so this time).

              • James Scott

                >>You think the Christian should be forced to make the cake?

                >I can’t speak for James but, yes,

                That is lovely for you now that Fascist anti-civil libertarian pseudo liberals are in power but what happens when Fascist anti-civil libertarian pseudo conservatives get into power?

                A gay baker can be forced against his/her will to bake cakes for the Westburrow Baptist Church and be forced to write “GOD HATES FA…etc” on it or some quote from the Bible or Koran that condemns same sex activity.

                The trouble is my buddy Crude and I believe in a free society.

                You simply don’t & that is quite sad because you only hurt yourself and the very gays whose rights your trying to protect.

        • plectrophenax

          So you would be happy for businesses to refuse to provide services for a bar mitzvah, or a Catholic confirmation? Well, you can of course, describe those as ‘acts’, but I think such discrimination would probably be enacted by anti-Semites and anti-Catholics, respectively. I think in practice it could well lead to a proliferation of discrimination. Maybe that would OK?

    • Andrew Dowling

      If you are a baker and object to selling baked goods to other human beings, you are in the wrong business . . . .

      • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

        If you are a baker and object to selling baked goods to other human beings, you are in the wrong business . . . .

        Because no one should ever let their moral and ethical beliefs interfere with business, right?

        • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

          I’m going to tackle this in a separate post, but if one of the caterers that wants to discriminate in this way also refuses service to Hindu weddings (others gods are invoked) and divorcees (in clear violation of Jesus’ teaching), and specifies this up front in their publicity material, I would be far more sympathetic to their claim to have a genuine religious stance and objection. But are any of the companies in question actually systematically and consistently applying their religious texts’ teachings in the way I suggested? Or are they invoking religion now as an ad hoc justification for their disgust and discrimination? In most cases it seems to clearly be the latter, and that just makes the use of religion in the service of discrimination all the more reprehensible.

          • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

            I’m going to tackle this in a separate post, but if one of the caterers that wants to discriminate in this way also refuses service to Hindu weddings (others gods are invoked) and divorcees (in clear violation of Jesus’ teaching), and specifies this up front in their publicity material, I would be far more sympathetic to their claim to have a genuine religious stance and objection.

            Let me get this straight. You’d be sympathetic – but only if they agree with your interpretation of their own religious texts? So you’re trying to pull out a win here on the technicality of ‘Sure, if you object to gay marriage, I’m sympathetic to you not being forced by threat of state intervention and violence to you taking part in this gay marriage by baking the cake. But… only if you’re following what I, James McGrath, thinks your religion teaches. And if you’re not, then I’m going to determine you’re insincere.’

            That’s your defense?

            But are any of the companies in question actually systematically and consistently applying their religious texts’ teachings in the way I suggested? Or are they invoking religion now as an ad hoc justification for their disgust and discrimination? In most cases it seems to clearly be the latter,

            Really? Please, provide evidence of this. ‘In most cases it seems to clearly be the latter.’ You just told me that none of the businesses involved deal with people who sincerely believe that same-sex marriage is wrong. Strangely, even the ones who said they are entirely willing to serve gays – they just don’t want to take part in a gay marriage.

            But no, you’re sure this isn’t the case. Which is why you’re entirely comfortable with legal bullying of people who just don’t want to take part in gay weddings. If they refuse to bake a cake or take a photograph, you think the state should punish them, take their money, maybe even jail them.

            Because ‘civil rights’.

            And you don’t think this at all sounds a little like some good ol’ New Testament pharisee thinking?

            • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

              By the way, James. I propose a compromise here.

              Same-sex couples – indeed, any groups at all – can demand that bakers, photographers, etc, provide them with services to do whatever they like.

              But the bakers, photographers, etc, have full say over what final product they provide to those couples and groups. So, if a wedding cake is desired, then – since that is an artistic act of creation – the baker can create whatever cake they please, whatever designs they like. And if the couple doesn’t like the design, well, they can choose to go elsewhere.

              That looks like it satisfies all sides here. Same-sex couples get a cake from whoever they want. I think you’re going to find that the bakers will be more than happy to supply a cake that they have creative control over.

              Whaddya say?

              Edit: Oh, and by the way – can we please stop the tired old objection that people object to gay marriage because of bigotry and disgust? There were gays marching against it in France, atheists event. There are people with same-sex attraction who find gay marriage wrong or immoral, despite not finding same-sex behavior instinctively revolting. And while I may find the psychology interesting, I don’t find anything horrifying against gay sex. My regarding gay marriage as a false institution, and same-sex sexual behavior (along with plenty of heterosexual sexual behavior) has entirely nothing to do with feelings of ‘disgust’.

              Believe it or not, ladies and gentlemen, some of us disapprove of things that we nevertheless find appealing in one way or another. A man who maintains a healthy weight is not necessarily disgusted by eating and drinking in abundance.

              • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

                I think what I wrote was clear, and if you need to distort it to make your case, that isn’t going to reflect well on your stance.

                If someone had the stance that only a particular definition of marriage is acceptable to them on religious grounds, e.g. only Christian monogamous marriage is to be catered for, and consistently vetted clients accordingly, then I would have some sympathy for the case that this was a religious enterprise with the freedom to do that. If a band only plays Jewish music for Jewish weddings, I don’t think they are obligated to accept an offer to play at a Christian one.

                The issue is that there are companies which are quite happy to ignore their Christian Scriptures’ teachings and cater for polytheistic weddings, and remarriage of divorced people, and other such things in violation of the clear teaching of the Christian Bible. If they now invoke religious freedom in the interest of discriminating against gays, they are not now just applying their usual practice in one more instance, they are suddenly invoking religion to justify their selective bigotry. And that selective appeal to religion is on much more dubious grounds both from a religious and a legal perspective.

                • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                  I think what I wrote was clear, and if you need to distort it to make your case, that isn’t going to reflect well on your stance.

                  First off – ‘distortion’? Considering your very OP – which of these things is not like the other one? – to say nothing of how you’ve treated people who disagree with you on this subject, that’s probably not a firecracker you want to play with.

                  Second – there was no distortion. You came up with a religious litmus test whereby you’d judge whether or not these people were sincere in their religious beliefs on this point based on your personal interpretation of what teachings they should follow if they were sincere in their religious beliefs. I pointed out the absurdity of that. I didn’t distort it into absurdity – it came neatly packaged that way.

                  If someone had the stance that only a particular definition of marriage is acceptable to them on religious grounds, e.g. only Christian monogamous marriage is to be catered for,

                  There you go again. You say ‘religious grounds’ but then you make it sound as if ‘religious grounds’ means ‘only Christian monogamous marriage’. And what if their religious belief is that marriage outside the Church is still marriage – whether it’s a muslim marriage, or a hindu marriage, or anything else – so long as it’s monogamous and between a man and a woman?

                  Wait, no, that’s not good enough, because then these people would apparently trivially qualify, and you’d be on the same side of this issue that I am.

                  The issue is that there are companies which are quite happy to ignore their Christian Scriptures’ teachings and cater for polytheistic weddings, and remarriage of divorced people, and other such things in violation of the clear teaching of the Christian Bible.

                  ‘Clear teaching of the Christian Bible’? Seriously?

                  First – you, the “progressive Christian”, are going to determine the sincerity of others’ Christian belief based on how you judge their adherence to what you regard as ‘clear teaching’? What’s more, you think this should be the government’s stance? You personally clearly reject a number of apparent ‘clear teachings of the Christian bible’. So I suppose your wilder critics are therefore correct in saying you’re not really a Christian? Or wait, is it that you’re not THEIR kind of Christian, but you’re another kind of Christian, and thus have a different set of religious standards to meet? But that would mean the Christians in question would trivially elude your judgment.

                  Second – and again, you should realize this – not every Christian religious belief is necessarily borne directly out of a bible quote. I’m Catholic – we have apostolic tradition and more. Religious beliefs aside, I’m also partial to natural law philosophy, which same-sex marriage runs afoul of as well. So once again, your standards won’t work.

                  But third and final: what are these ‘companies’ that are ‘happy to ignore their Christian Scriptures’ teachings’ that A) they demonstrably regard AS teaching what you take them to be, and B) nevertheless don’t adhere to them? You’re suggesting that, say… the bakers and photographers who have had legal suits brought against them won’t take pictures of a gay marriage, but oh boy, they’re more than happy to take polygamist or open marriage money, or better yet, to take pictures of two heterosexual men marrying each other.

                  Where’s the evidence? Or are you just imagining your opponents to be something other than what they are or appear to be to shore up your position?

                  So much for the selective appeal to religion.

                • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                  Oh, by the way James. Regarding your ‘religious bigotry’ charge.

                  It seems, then, that if the baker is happy and willing to take a picture of (say) a known gay individual, or gays in other settings than a marriage, then immediately your charge of ‘selective bigotry’ dies on the spot. After all, it would be clear they aren’t discriminating against the individual because they were gay – it was a particular act or ceremony they wanted no part of.

                  But somehow I’m willing to bet that a demonstrable willingness to make a cake for a gay birthday party, but a lack of willingness to make a cake for a wedding between two heterosexual men, would still trip off your ‘anti-gay bigot’ alarms, despite it passing your stated test.

                • James Scott

                  I agree with Crude. Your religious litmus test directly contradicts Catholic teaching on marriage. For example an opposite sex pagan or Jewish monogamous wedding is not sinful since natural marriage is judged morally good by the Church. Natural marriages (i.e marriages where one or both parties are not baptized) are not sacraments so they can be dissolved by the competent authority. Sacramental marriages can only be dissolved by death.

                  Your test imposes religious views on Crude and Myself that as Catholics we both reject.

                  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

                    But why does he consistently refuse to actually talk about the details of the issue? It is clear that Catholic churches have their right to solemnize marriages according to the stipulations of their faith protected by law; but not to require that others conform to those standards beyond the boundaries of the church’s domain. The challenge is how to legislate regarding secular companies which may have a devout religious owner, in a way that protects the freedom of conscience of the business owner and also protects minorities and the rights of others. It is a challenging balancing act to legislate this. Despite what Crude claims, it is not clear cut. The state sometimes decides that its interest in protecting people may trump religious freedom – for instance, in prosecuting those who rely on faith healing for their children, or dealing with those who use peyote for religious purposes. I can’t understand why Crude seems not to grasp that this is a challenging issue to legislate, precisely because it is at the intersection of the protection of two sets of freedoms. But it is clear that there would be issues if a major secular hotel chain owned by a devout religious person were allowed to refuse accomodation to people based on religious beliefs, whether they be about same-sex marriage or interracial marriage or whatever else. And so, instead of polemicizing and name-calling, would you perhaps be willing to do what Crude has thus far refused to and actually talk about how we decide whose freedoms need to be protected as the expense of others’ when the two come into conflict?

              • Lamont Cranston

                What an excellent name you have picked! You are indeed crude, bigotted trash.

                • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                  Just because you’re named after the son on Sanford and Son doesn’t mean you can tell trash at a glance.

                  The only bigots in this thread are the religious bigots – petty people who cannot suffer the existence of people whose religion results in their failing to bend knee at one of the all holy idols of faux ‘progressivism’.

                  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

                    As I said, if a business has a consistent stance based on religious scruples, I have no objection. It is the after-the-fact appeal to religion to justify the selective application of religious scruples that bothers me. I certainly would, if I owned a sign-making factory, want the right not to make them for Westboro Baptist Church. And I would have to acknowledge, if I had made hateful signs for some other group previously, that I would be engaging in unfair discrimination if I were to do the one but not the other.

                    • James Scott

                      I would be morally bothered by a person let’s say a Catholic who photographs an opposite sex “marriage” outside the Church between a divorced Catholic & another who have obtained no annulment from the Church but are marrying anyway invalidly by Church teaching but refuses to photograph a same sex wedding.

                      But it would be up to the Bishop or that person’s Priest to rebuke their moral inconsistency.

                      It’s not the place of the government to monitor wither or not we consistently follow our religions. Separation of Church and State and the Establishment Clause.

                      I say your way is the way of fascism and totalitarianism.

                      Crude and I support freedom.

                      Do you? I think not.

                    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

                      It is easy to say that one supports freedom. But freedom for whom? When two sets of freedoms collide, the state must decide whose freedom most needs protecting for the greater good.

                      But perhaps the appropriate approach is to go about this the way they did in the South, and to boycott those who refuse to treat all customers as equal? People in the South had discrimination and religion intertwined. The law could only accomplish so much.

  • GordonKS

    We progressives in Arizona are speaking out! Don’t give up on us yet – the best is yet to come!

  • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

    Here’s a link to a follow-up post I wrote, because of discussions in the comments section here: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/exploringourmatrix/2014/02/gay-wedding-cake-discrimination.html

  • Eric

    Someone else has probably mentioned this already, but this post goes double for what’s happening in Uganda.

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