What Secular Groups Are Saying About the Supreme Court Rulings

Below is a compilation of graphics and press releases released by various atheist, Humanist, and pro-church/state separation groups:

Foundation Beyond Belief:

American Humanist Association:

“Today the Supreme Court wisely stopped the federal government from its practice of discriminating against loving couples on account of some politicians’ religious bias,” said American Humanist Association Executive Director Roy Speckhardt. “Now we turn our attention to the states that remain intolerant with an aim of eradicating institutionalized discrimination.”

“The Supreme Court’s DOMA decision made clear that the federal government cannot act to limit marriage rights granted by states out of animus against the class of persons they allow to marry,” said Bill Burgess, attorney for the American Humanist Association’s legal center. “This decision is an important step towards making real for same-sex couples the equality under the law that the Constitution intends for all Americans.”

“We aren’t done, not nearly done,” said Jason Frye, coordination of the LGBTQ Humanist Council. “Changing legal architecture provides recourse against acts of discrimination. The Court rightly bolstered the bedrock for equality. What needs to also change are social attitudes. Now it is up to us to shape the social architecture toward justice and to further expand the atmosphere of its reach.”

Secular Coalition for America:

Executive Director, Edwina Rogers, said the Coalition celebrates the Court’s decision on DOMA, noting that the U.S. Constitution extends “equal protection of the law” to all citizens.

“Efforts to restrict same-sex couples from access to civil marriage are blatant attempts to insert religious beliefs into our secular government,” Rogers said. “We applaud the Court’s decision on DOMA and Proposition 8, but we recognize there is still a lot of work to be done throughout the country in ensuring that marriage equality is the rule for all.”

The Secular Coalition has been a long-time supporter of marriage equality and an opponent of all theological definitions for civil contracts. The Coalition supports the repeal of all laws, including at the state level, that seek to define marriage as “one man, one woman.”

“The decisions on DOMA and Prop 8 are very big and important battles won in a long war — despite the Court’s ruling, in states across the country same-sex couples are still denied civil marriages based on religious ideology,” Rogers said. “Laws like these treat same-sex couples inequitably and fly in the face of the very freedoms our Constitution provides us. The fight now turns to the states that refuse to treat same-sex couples equitably.”

American Atheists:

“The only objection to government recognition of gay marriage, to gay marriage at all, is clearly rooted in religion,” said President David Silverman. “The religious can object until they’re blue in the face, but America is not a theocracy, and religious bigotry has no place in American law. Our mission is separation of religion and government, and this is a day of great victory for us, for the future, for what it means to be an American. I am proud of America and of humanity today.”

“This is a great day in American history,” said Public Relations Director Dave Muscato. “It is absurd to me that it took this long to recognize such a basic human right as the freedom to marry, but I am proud of our country for doing the right thing. Same-sex marriage is not legal in every state yet, but this is a step in the right direction.”

Americans United for Separation of Church and State:

“Civil marriage law should be based on principles of fairness, liberty and equality, not religious doctrine,” said the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, Americans United executive director. “These decisions are important steps toward that goal.

“Religious Right groups and their allies are fighting a losing battle to impose their theology and moral views about marriage on everyone,” he continued. “The decisions today are two more losses for their discriminatory agenda.”

Center for Inquiry:

“As an organization grounded in the values of secularism and humanism, which recognize the intrinsic value of every person, we are delighted to celebrate these milestones in the struggle for full equality before the law for all citizens,” said Michael De Dora, CFI’s Director of Public Policy. “DOMA and Prop 8 were betrayals of the secular ideals set forth in our founding documents, relegating LGBT Americans to second-class status. The Court’s rejection of these measures strongly reinforces the idea that religiously based attitudes on sex and marriage will not stand in the way of granting fundamental rights to anyone.”

International Humanist and Ethical Union:

Sonja Eggerickx, president of the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) said: “This is tremendously important not just for LGBT rights in America but for the status of same-sex marriage around the world.

“This is why it is internationally important that the US has reversed its stance and redrawn the line. The vote may have been close, but the Court has sent a clear message that the love between same-sex couples does not belong in a different legal class, and that lower-tier conceptions of marriage for same-sex couples will not stand the scrutiny of justice.

Interfaith Alliance:

Interfaith Alliance President the Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy issued the following statement celebrating today’s Supreme Court decisions:

The enormity of today’s decisions cannot be overstated. The combined impact of these two rulings puts our nation further down the inevitable and proper path towards full marriage equality for the LGBT community. All Americans should rejoice in today’s decisions because they bring us that much closer to fulfilling the promise of our Constitution. I am hopeful that today’s decision striking down DOMA as unconstitutional and overturning the Proposition 8 case on standing will be followed by continued victories in this fight for equality. That a majority of the Court recognized in the DOMA case that this was an issue of equal protection denied is no small victory.

To those critics who will try to characterize these decisions as a threat to their religious freedom, let me say they could not be more wrong. No members of the clergy can be required to perform a religious ceremony that goes against the dictates of their faith, and thanks to the protections afforded by the First Amendment nothing in today’s decisions changes that fact. Interfaith Alliance’s work for LGBT equality is not finished and we will not be finished until all Americans are afforded the rights restored today for the people of California.

Freedom From Religion Foundation:

This is a great day for all Americans and for our godless Constitution. The secular ideal that all people are equal in the eyes of the law has triumphed. Progress is possible, even with this Supreme Court.

The LGBT movement worked tirelessly for today’s victories. They provide wonderful motivation for our secular movement, for our freethinking movement. Today is a great day; let’s savor the victory.

Secular Woman:

Though it is an incomplete victory, the ruling is still a landmark moment for civil rights. “As advocates for marriage equality, social justice, and freedom from religious ideology, we welcome this Supreme Court decision,” said Secular Woman president Kim Rippere. “The attempt by politicians to legislate marriage is religious influence at the most basic level. It is pressuring citizens to conform with a passé definition of marriage based on religious traditions.”

Humanist Unitarian Universalist Associations:

Although grateful for these developments, the HUUmanist Association will not be satisfied until same sex marriages can be contracted in every state in the land, until same sex marriages entered into in any state are recognized in all states, and until all of the other ways in which sexual minorities are marginalized throughout the country are repealed or struck down. Equality and justice for all.

[This post will be updated as more groups weigh in]

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • WallofSleep

    I felt a great disturbance in the wingnut-o-sphere, as if millions of heads suddenly exploded in impotent rage and were suddenly tweeting in fury.

    • Buckley

      The more you tighten your grip, the more xians will slip through your fingers.

      • WallofSleep

        I find your lack of faith… encouraging.

        • Buckley

          Kid, I’ve flown from one side of this galaxy to the other, and I’ve seen a lot of strange stuff, but I’ve never seen *anything* to make me believe that there’s one all-powerful Force controlling everything. ‘Cause no mystical energy field controls *my* destiny. It’s all a lot of simple tricks and nonsense.

          • Mark W.

            “The Religious Right are easily startled, but they will soon be back, and in greater numbers.”

    • JFerris

      Damn good post WallofSleep. FWIW, excellent reply Buckley.

    • http://www.everydayintheparkwithgeorge.com/ Matt Eggler

      Let the bigoted bitch-moaning commence!

      • Michael W Busch

        Please find non-sexist insults.

        • Spuddie

          Mikey, do you realize every time you do that, people will go out of their way to do it now? Just to cheese you off.

          • Michael W Busch

            That is not a reason to not call out bigoted speech. That is a reason for people to learn to not be gratuitously bigoted.

            • Spuddie

              You know I am just razzing you. Relax =)

            • thebigJ_A

              Sorry, but no. “To bitch” has literally no connection with sexism, iit goes all the way back to Middle English ‘bicched’ (‘cursed’, with no connection to female dogs).

              Bitch as a noun was used to denigrate women as early as the 1400s. To denigrate a man, the 1500s.

              In other words, the verb is older than the sexist term.

        • http://www.everydayintheparkwithgeorge.com/ Matt Eggler

          You’re right. It was a thoughtless use of phrase. Please substitute “Let the bigoted piss-moaning commence!”

          • Tainda

            As someone with a vagina, who just happens to be a glorious bitch, you may use bitch-moaning.

            • http://www.everydayintheparkwithgeorge.com/ Matt Eggler

              “Tainda made me do it!!!” ; )

              • Tainda

                The funny thing is, I have heard that all my life haha With my real name inserted of course :P

                Who me? A troublemaker? Nah!

            • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

              I’m a man but I’ll bet I’ve been called a bitch at least as many times as you have. (Usually deserved, btw)

              • Tainda

                I call men bitches all the time lol

                It’s pretty much my favorite word…

          • Hat Stealer

            Let the bigoted dick-moaning commence?

            Dammit, I’m getting some really weird imagery in my head from all this.

        • Smiles

          To “bitch” is not sexist…see definition 7.

          “verb (used without object)
          7. Slang. to complain; gripe: They bitched about the service, thenabout the bill.”

          “… language keeps evolving, and bitch can now also be applied to a man, to a complaint, and to any difficult or unpleasant thing or situation. Used as a verb, we can talk about complaining (“bitching and moaning”), or bungling things (“bitching something up”), or riding in an uncomfortable position in a car (“sitting bitch”). When used in any of these ways, it’s more slang than vulgarity, more colorful interjection than cause for offense. Nevertheless, care must be taken—there is a big difference between bitching about somebody and calling them a bitch!”

          Via: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/bitch

          So, quit bitching…

          • Michael W Busch

            You are wrong. “bitch” is a sexist slur whenever it is used as an insult or pejorative, since that is wrongly equating complaining/messing things up with being female.

            • Smiles

              This is a jump you are making…and just like the xtian right, you do not get to force YOUR definition of a word on everyone else.

            • thebigJ_A

              To bitch is not equating anything with being female. It IS equating things with complaining, since that’s what the word, as a verb, means.

        • http://parkandbark.wordpress.com/ Houndentenor

          My favorite podcast is called Godless Bitches. I guess they are sexist too?

          • Michael W Busch

            There the word is not being used as an insult – it’s been re-appropriated.

            Analogy: anytime someone uses “gay” as an insult, that’s homophobic – even though the word has entirely non-bigoted meanings.

      • Carmelita Spats

        You’ve been church lady scolded. That is sexist language and it is not allowed. It’s like when I ask my cuss-of-a-neighbor about his Saturday night and he responds, “It was a three bagger…One for me, one for her, and one for the dog so he’ ll respect me in the morning.” He’s one to talk, though. He’s so buck-toothed he could eat corn-on-the-cob through a key hole. I don’t know if that is ableist language but I will check.

        • Tainda

          Could it be….SATAN?!

        • Michael W Busch

          You’ve been church lady scolded

          No, this is not “church lady scolding”. This is not letting sexist slurs go unchallenged. And please consider the harmful stereotyping of falsely equating giving bigotry no sanction with scolding – and specifically with scolding by women who happen to be religiously devout.

        • Hat Stealer

          You know, I would like to meet your neighbor one of these days.

    • http://www.everydayintheparkwithgeorge.com/ Matt Eggler

      Hokey religions and ancient books are no substitute for a moral and ethical society, kid.

    • Michael W Busch

      These are the rulings you’re looking for.

      • Randay

        This was so obvious from the Constitution, that I am disgusted that four guys could vote against it. It should have been a slam dunk.
        Amendment IX
        The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be
        construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
        Amendment X
        The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
        Amendment XIV
        Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall
        make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

        So, as I have argued before, all states which have a marriage law must recognize marriage laws of another state.

    • decathelite

      I’ve got a good feeling about this…

  • Spazticus

    I bet the Westboro Baptist Church members are losing their shit right about now. Of course, that assumes they had any left to lose, what with them spewing it anywhere and everywhere they get the chance.

    • WallofSleep

      Today will be interesting. I will savor every sweet tear of wingnut anger.

    • arensb

      Oh, I’m sure they’ve got shit to spare. They’ve always seemed pretty full of it.

    • JET

      All ten of them? There are bigger outhouses out there, and lots of shit to lose.

    • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

      Not really. It just confirms their belief that they are an island of virtue swimming in a cesspool of abomination. They already fly the US flag upside down.

  • rhodent

    But..but…HOW COULD THIS HAVE HAPPENED?!?!?! We bought all those sandwiches at Chick-Fil-A…

    • Spazticus

      “Marriage equality for some, miniature chicken sandwiches for others.”

      • WallofSleep

        The fuck?!?! That garbage is made of chicken? Unpossible!

        • JA

          Whatever it’s made of, I ended up sick the few times I ate there, so now I avoid the place like the plague it apparently is.

          • WallofSleep

            I’ll wager it was deep frying oil that was allowed to go rancid. Had that happen to me a couple of times at a different fast food chain. Fortunately for me, I gave up fast food a long time ago.

  • WallofSleep

    Oh, the goddamned, mother fucking irony!

    “…who are you to say that, if I’m a devout Muslim, I come over here and I
    have three wives, who are you to say if I’m an American citizen that I
    can’t have multiple marriages?”

    - Glenn Beck, “devout Mormon”

    http://www.buzzfeed.com/andrewkaczynski/glenn-beck-worries-about-devout-muslims-who-come-over-here-a

    • Mark W.

      Sticking with the Star Wars themed replies…

      “He’s more mouth piece now than man. Twisted and evil.”

  • http://absurdlypointless.blogspot.com/ Tanner B James

    Three Great Decisions were upheld today by Moderate American Christians, through their honestly held belief, that the Governance over The United States, shall, diligently, continue its work towards creating a more perfect, and equal, Secular Union. Moderate Christian Americans have, with gentle hands, reminded their immoderate brethren that institutionalizing religious expression is not the moral path to freedom.

  • Sarah-Sophia

    To tell you the truth I think it is wrong for there to be any civil benefits associated with marriage (especially when it comes to taxes). A couple should not have to get married to escape discrimination.

  • Roger Peritone
    • Tainda

      The reply is priceless!

  • Roger Peritone

    Ouch. A good burn from the Atheist Experience people.

  • Bridget Gaudette

    I made the one for FBB. Thanks for acknowledging everyone Hemant!

  • HUUmanists

    Here is the HUUmanists Association response: http://huumanists.org/blog/201306/standing-side-love


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