Lefties Who Bravely Face the Applause

Lefties Who Bravely Face the Applause March 27, 2015

Intellectual consistency is no problem when you’re determined to receive applause.
Forced organ harvesting from prisoners is okey-fine, but heaven forfend a photographer be allowed to refuse business. That’s where Mr. Benioff draws the line. Again, to unthinking applause. – Dale Price

Indiana passes a religious liberty act and a guy who has no problem doing business with Commie torturers and murderers postures for the Chattering Classes.

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  • HornOrSilk

    The hate which is being spread in the Indy Star shows the reason why this law is necessary. As do things like this:

    http://www.indianaforefront.com/this-ford-recalled/

    • Vision_From_Afar

      I am a liberal, tree-hugging hippie Pagan, as my wife constantly reminds me.
      That man is an idiot, not exactly a rare breed in politics, but a disturbingly concise one.
      ETA: I’m referring, of course, to your link, not you, sir.

      • HornOrSilk

        Right he is — and imo, I am for religious liberty for tree-hugging hippie pagans as well — I’ve long been promoting religious liberty (although often discussing its need in relation to some Christians against it when dealing with Islam, and because I promote religious liberty for them, I’m “liberal” to them).

        • Vision_From_Afar

          Everyone is someone else’s liberal.
          Except maybe Palin.

          • HornOrSilk

            Oh, she is a liberal — if you ask Pobedonostsev

            • IRVCath

              She is liberal in some things. Some rightfully so, others, regretfully, in ways at odds with the Church of her baptism.

      • antigon

        ‘I am a liberal tree hugging hippie Pagan, as my wife constantly reminds me.’
        *
        Well then repent, my formerly dear Mr. Afar – not of being fun, of course, but of all that Macbethian pagan nonsense.

        • Vision_From_Afar

          Is that a dagger I see before me? Repentance and return to a fold long since disavowed, I must inform, is impossible. My Gods have claimed me, and I Them, for good or ill. 😉
          Though good fun with fine fellows shall continue so long as my heart beats.

          • antigon

            Ex-caro Mr. Afar:
            *
            I see you belatedly caught that apostrophe in ‘Gods,’ which we may consider a Freudian or perhaps better to say an anti-Julian slip. And that wasn’t a dagger, t’was a demon’s gleaming tooth <-%. Meantime for the record…
            *
            'Without God, everything is permissible,' said Mr. Dostoevski.
            *
            And his Lord: 'With God everything is possible.'

            • Vision_From_Afar

              Twas neither Freud, nor anti-Julian, but the vile purveyor of all things typo: Autocorrect.

        • wlinden

          You have to watch out for those Macbethians…. or is that a trad I didn’t know about?

          • antigon

            ‘You have to watch out for those Macbethians’
            *
            I’ll say. All that sound & fury.

  • Vision_From_Afar

    A billionaire hypocrite? Stop the presses, really.

  • Curious55

    Hi Mark, thanks for providing a forum for some of the comments. I wonder, though, if the language and the type of condensed format really helps to further discussion of any sort. Is the blog’s intention to further discussion of RFRA, to encourage better understanding of its legal underpinnings and problems, or what is the purpose? From an outsider’s perspective (I haven’t been on these forums very long), the effect seems primarily emotional – there isn’t very much substantive/intellectual discussion going on.

    RFRA is a very complicated law. City of Boerne v. Flores, which established a lot of the RFRA tenets wasn’t broken down according to party or judicial affiliation. For instance, Justice Ginsburg (typically liberal) and Justice Scalia (typically conservative) both came down against RFRA, as did Justice Kennedy. Scalia and Kennedy are both Catholic Justices.

    The problem with the words “religious liberty” or “anti-gay” is that neither describes what the law is doing very well. On the one hand, it is unlikely that RFRA will change very much, in spite of everything people fear. In so many decades of RFRA legislation, courts have always accepted that (1) laws against discrimination are a compelling state interest, and that (2) there is in most instances no more narrowly tailored alternative to this goal. Even Burwell v. Hobby Lobby followed this particular analysis, and Kennedy, who wrote the majority opinion, suggested that the challenge to the contraceptive mandate only survived because an existing workable alternative already was present. In spite of its “religious liberty” nomenclature, the judicial history of RFRA provisions have seen courts generally side with non-religious interests when applying the balancing test. For instance, Scalia, who on social issues is as far “right” as one can get, and a very devout Catholic, has argued that religious groups cannot claim exemptions from generally applicable laws if those laws do not target any particular religion. Michael McConnell of Stanford I believe has observed that RFRA provisions has not led to religious claims succeeding. All it does it provide a test. It does not say whether religious exemptions will pass that test. In most cases, historically, they have not.

    The misinformation out there is huge right now. LGBT advocates who fear that RFRA laws will allow Christian bakers to stop baking same-sex wedding cakes, and the legislators who support these laws for this reason, are probably misguided as a matter of law. Courts have generally allowed these exemptions in areas that do not clash with public accommodations. For instance, if a Sikh does not want to cut his hair in the military (real case), or a Muslim would like to keep a short beard in prison. RFRA is not a new statute in many states.

    So RFRA is not necessarily anti-LGBT, and those who support it not necessarily homophobic or enemies of the human race. But exactly what it will accomplish, beyond dividing already divided communities even farther, remains to be seen.

    Why not do your readers a service and deviate from being part of the rhetoric used on both sides of this debate? Provide evidence, factual information, past cases – encourage intelligent discussion that doesn’t boil down to fast judgments or namecalling. I don’t think people who are worried about the bill should be characterized as engaged in “unthinking applause.”

    As an example, Justice Stevens predicted in City of Boerne that what RFRA will eventually do, in spite of what religious groups would like, is to make clear that the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause does not allow preferential treatment of religious beliefs from sincerely-held secular/philosophical beliefs. This is actually a position that is now embraced, across the ideological spectrum by many lawyers and jurists. This is an example of an unintended consequence that has nothing to do with being anti-LGBT or anti-Christian … but a problem with RFRA jurisprudence that almost every single justice on the Supreme Court (perhaps with the exception of Breyer) has noted.

    Cheers.

    • antigon

      Plus it provokes cascades of unreadable prose pretending to be thought.

    • W. Randolph Steele

      Thank you for a very cogent analysis. Indiana was my home state and i can tell you that small town bigotry is still very much around. For instance, in 2008, an African-american judge, I know got lost on the way to a judges meeting in French Lick, Indiana( real place with a large resort and casino)and when she went in to a bank in small town to get directions nobody would give her directions. In the early 1960’s my dad lost a paving contract for my uncle’s paving company where he was a manager when the customer discovered that he was a Catholic. don’t forget that Indiana was where the Klan got complete control of the state in the 1920’s the descendants of those people are still there. when my African-american financee and I kissed at the Sign of Peace during Mass at the small southern Indiana my dad’s family helped to found, we got stares and angry looks. Later, as we were leaving a man came up to us and said”We don’f do that here”. So the fears of LGBT community are not completely unfounded.
      My guess is that a lot of lawyers are going to get very rich from the cases brought under this law and the business community, most notably Eli Lilly, Cummins etc will suffer. In fact, Salesforce is already pulling business out of the state.

      • HornOrSilk

        Salesforce which is with.. you know… CHINA. Yeah, they are pulling out — for money they will stay. It’s another con job extortion.

        • W. Randolph Steele

          Doesn’t matter. it may or may not be a con job,but the Indianapolis region is THE economic engine for the state. It and the other urban areas are the only parts of the state that are growing. If they take a hit,the state’s economy gets damaged. Oh, by the way, a business owner is already on tape saying that he intentionally discriminated against gay customers. What this does is reinforce the image of “Hoosiers” as knuckle dragging, banjo playing hillbillies. Exactly what the major businesses do not want. A well respected Indiana political blog is reporting “a near rebellion of the Republican State Committee”. Remember, while the gov has presidential aspirations, he was only elected with 49% of the vote and THIS doesn’t help. Even the Republican mayor of Indianapolis came out against this. so yeah, let’s make our point by threatening peoples lively hoods. yeah, that’s the ticket.

          • HornOrSilk

            It DOES matter. When they are working with and have no problems with REAL human rights violations, their objection is a farce. That’s the point. The law does not discriminate, but say no to discrimination.

            • W. Randolph Steele

              You seem to forget the first rule of politics”Perception becomes reality”. And that’s the point here. And yes, everyone is aware of China’s human rights violations, but A, nobody can do much about it there, B, nobody HERE reallty cares and C, ya take care of your own.

          • Sue Korlan

            Other areas of the state do well, too, thank you very much. It’s not just Indy. And as someone who can’t get health insurance that doesn’t violate my faith, I am extremely thankful for the passage of this law, which simply mimics the federal RFRA. Hopefully this law will help get this problem resolved.

            • W. Randolph Steele

              Really? Which area’s? According to the the July 2014 census estimates, ONLY the urban areas are growing because it’s where the jobs are in a knowledge based economy. BTW, 3000 people showed up yesterday to protest the this vaguely worded law AND the gov is already trying to undo the damage, according to the Indianapolis Star. I’m in town visiting family and I ran into a former Rep State Senator that I’ve know for many years and i asked him what was going on and he said” I KNOW the gov pretty well and I and a lot of others TOLD him not to sign it and NOW we’re having to try to come up with a way to lessen the damage”. Also a local radio station has an interview with a local resturuant owner from a sub urban county, who admitted that he not only won’t serve gay customers,BUT that he has done already by telling them that kitchen equipment was not working. As for health insurance,NO ONE is forcing you use it for ciontraception. IF others do, it’s none of YOUR business.

              • HornOrSilk
                • W. Randolph Steele

                  Oh give me a break. I read BOTH of them, including the Star and it doesn’t change my mind ONE IOTA. The law is so vaguely worded that the commentary of local tv this morning and the consensus is that this is a bad law and it will depend on which judge rules which way. In the meantime the economic damage get done and the gov gets beat. As I wrote earlier, his Rep allies are freaking out about this and it’s NOT going away. The former state senator is Catholic and he and his family have been very PROMINENT Rep’s both in and out of government for over 80 years. His grandfather was a mayor of Indianapolis and a judge for many years. The Reps are VERY worried about losing the Indianapolis mayors office.All of this hurts them. They had trouble finding a candidate and he will have to defend this, IF he can. As I also wrote earlier, having a local business owner admitting discrimination against gay resturant patrons only adds fuel to the fire. It’s all why the gov is tap dancing as fast as he can to lessen the damage.There an old Hoosier saying “When a man says it’s not the money but the principle of the thing, It’s the money”. IT’S ECONOMY STUPID! NOW I’m done. I’ve made my points.

                  • HornOrSilk

                    You can accuse ANY law of being “vague” because of the way human language works. And what you have are people in the media PUSHING an interpretation. The “consensus” are of the people who are forcing an interpretation which is not in the law itself. “Consensus” is made by the media which ignores what is in the law, and makes a straw man.

                    You asked where the law is in place. You get answers, if you read the documents. You are just promoting a false interpretation of the law, following a “rep” who has a history of standing against religious liberty. Yes, we get where you stand. Fine, you support anti-religious nuts attacking people of faith, telling people of religious faith they have no business in public but must stay in the closet. We get it.

                    This religious person says no way.

                    • W. Randolph Steele

                      As someone who grew up in Indiana in the 1950’s and 60’s and who’s family WAS directly impacted by religious bigotry in that my dad’s company was indentified as owned by Catholics, I find your assertion that I support “anti-religious nuts” hilarious. And also deeply offensive. My experiences made me a STRONG believer in a strong separation of Church and State. I am also against religious busy bodies inflicting their views on the rest of us. I’ve also read interpretations that directly contradict what was written in those articles by legal scholars equal to , if not better than the ones ones you cited. So In my view I am not spreading a false interpretation, simply one that seems to be far more mainstream. The law is so vague that a local marijuana activist has registered a “church” that uses marijuana in its’ services. Think it might be tossed, don’t bet on it. The Native American Church uses peyote in it’s services and it’s legal.
                      Harry Truman said it best “IF you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen”.

                    • HornOrSilk

                      You are supporting anti-religious nuts because they are the ones upset that religious are not in the closet. They keep saying “shut up.” They keep forcing religious to violate their religious conscience. Nurses have been told they have to help with abortions or lose their job in some places. This is why religious liberty (which is what this law is about) is needed. You are supporting bigotry. You are supporting the same anti-Catholicism you decry from the past. The same arguments used against Catholic then (“forcing religion”) is used now. Sorry, but you just show who you support. And it isn’t religion.

                    • W. Randolph Steele

                      NO, it isn’t YOUR religion. BYE!

                    • wlinden

                      Promises, promises.

                    • wlinden

                      10) The Church of Weed? Not so fast: The Quaintances

                      Danuel & Mary Quaintance were arrested for running large
                      quantities of marijuana. They argued that they are members of the Church
                      of Cognizance, which Mr. Quaintance founded in 1991. According to the ruling handing down the rejection
                      of their claim, “The church is organized around the teaching that
                      marijuana is a deity and sacrament. The Quaintances claimed that they
                      sincerely hold this belief and that possession (and consumption) of
                      marijuana is essential to their religious exercise. Accordingly, they
                      argued the prosecution against them unduly burdened their religious
                      beliefs and thus could not stand under RFRA.”

                      The 10th Circuit didn’t buy their story. One of the requirements of
                      RFRA is that targets of government action demonstrate that they have
                      sincere religious beliefs. The court noted that one of their dealers had
                      been hastily inducted into the church the night before he was to pick
                      up his first load of ganja for them. They gave him a certificate
                      designating him an authorized church courier but never had him read the
                      pledge of membership or even asked him if he shared their beliefs. For
                      his part, the courier didn’t share their beliefs and testified that he’d
                      signed up just so he could “do the load” of marijuana he’d been asked
                      to transport.”

                      http://thefederalist.com/2015/03/30/meet-10-americans-helped-by-religious-freedom-bills-like-indianas/#.VRk6G_nyXn8.twitter

                      So, just saying, “This is part of my religion, which I just made up”, won’t fly. See also the case of the “Church of the Most High Goddess”, where the judge said essentially “I’m not stupid, this is just a front for prostitution”. If I remember correctly, the “Church of Body Modification” didn’t fly either, since it did not offer any real theology, just “This is my RELIGION”.

                      Giving a parade of horribles which a bill “could lead to” is a dishonest tactic.

                    • W. Randolph Steele

                      BUT the Church of Flying Spaghetti Monster did! Yeah, I know these are highly unlikely to work, but ya never know. During the Vietnam War, there friends of mine who became “ordained” minsters to get out of the draft. Remember the Universal Life Church?

              • Sue Korlan

                Elkhart, for one. I think if whoever was refused service sues they will win. The law only protects people from the government requiring them to violate their faith.
                .
                As far as I and the Catholic Church are concerned if I pay for something then I’m as responsible for its use as the person who uses it. So if I contribute to a fund that covers contraceptives I’m as responsible as the person who uses them for their use.

                • W. Randolph Steele

                  Elkhart is part of the South Bend metro area thus making my urban area point. As to the other, my close seminary friend and priest who married my wife and I AND my theology prof friend both say that the pay thing is erroneous.

                  • Sue Korlan

                    I live in South Bend and don’t consider Elkhart part of the metropolitan area. It’s quite a fair distance away. I am not responsible for the thoughts of your friends.
                    The Catechism #1868 says “we have a responsibility for the sins committed by others when we cooperate in them: -by participating directly and voluntarily in them; -by not disclosing or not hindering them when we have an obligation to do so”.I read this as forbidding me from providing the funds for others to commit the mortal sin of using artificial contraception.

                    • W. Randolph Steele

                      Really? The US government does. As to the 2nd, that is YOUR interpretation and my NOT my confessor’s or the other source I consider asa spiritual advisor.

                    • Sue Korlan

                      It would, however, appear to be the opinion of many bishops and other Roman Catholic organizations who are suing the federal government because providing contraceptives for others is wrong in the eyes of the Church. I’m simply following their faithful lead.

      • Joseph

        “…my dad lost a paving contract for my uncle’s paving company where he was a manager when the customer discovered that he was a Catholic.”
        .
        Be careful, some commenters on this blog who pretend that the government will in no way persecute the Church in the future are holding the line that Catholics have never been persecuted in the US despite all historical data and that we are all paranoid egoists.

        • W. Randolph Steele

          Well, I’ve never been one of those. However, being from Indiana, my experience has persecution came other denominations and who’s actions were winked at by local government dominated by those denominations. Any Catholic, who thinks, fundies and evangelicals are our friends are seriously mistaken.

          • Joseph

            Yep… I converted to Catholicism and was derided by family and friends of the evangelical persuasion. Still have many friends who believe that Ted Cruz is the second coming for standing up to those nasty non-Christians in the middle east who are busy receiving God’s punishment for being Catholic cultist by having their villages razed and children, wives, and husbands beheaded. Ugh. It must be understood, the evangelical hate for Catholicism may be set aside when they see us as *allies* in a particular ideological/political war that they engage in, but this is only strategic. Any fig leaf offered is no better than one with your friends while playing Settlers of Catan. It’s flimsy and will break the minute you get in the way. They have no love for Catholics, never will. Ted Cruz and his ilk show this every day.

  • Guest

    Mark this is a day for me to put on my calendar because it’s the first time I’ve ever disagreed with you. I guess it had to happen sometime.

  • SteveP

    An open comment to Mr. Benioff: not doing business with Hoosiers because they might not do business with other Hoosiers is too hard a lesson for anyone to follow. Relent.

  • Sonnys_Mom

    It may not answer to the problem, but people are simply getting fed up with cultural Marxism, groupthink, doublespeak and legalized coercion in the name of “tolerance” and “equality” for certain favored interest groups. No doubt we will see more legislation like this.

    • chezami

      “Cultural Marxism” is a bullshit buzzword. It means nothing.

      • Dave G.

        Not a bullshit buzzword. No more than ‘Rubber Hose Right.’ It’s a term used to describe certain people who are pushing for certain things. In the case of Rubber Hose Right, it accurately described those conservatives who seemed enamored with the use of torture to further various ends. For Cultural Marxism, it applies to those, on the Left, who are coming out of the closet and saying they are warming up to the idea that freedoms and liberties are best understood filtered through a certain prism, in this case a prism that bears strong resemblance to things we remember hearing from states that seriously bought into Marxist ideals (for instance, “freedom of worship” vs. “freedom of religion”). So, it works. At no point was I confused about what Rubber Hose Right applied to. At no point am I confused about what Cultural Marxism applies to.

        • chezami

          Baloney. It’s a term flung to tar people as enemies.

          • Dave G

            And what else do we call those who are saying it’s time to end this laughable notion that you and I have a right to not be liberal? Cultural Marxist is at least polite. Though it doesn’t have the punch Rubber Hose Right had, I will admit that.

          • Paxton Reis

            This has been
            attributed to Martin Luther King: “How hard it is for people to live
            without someone to look down upon–really to look down upon. It is not just that they feel cheated out of someone
            to hate. It is that they are compelled to look more closely into themselves and
            what they don’t like in themselves.”

            • Dave G.

              Yep. True words. Human nature. Nothing new under the sun I guess.

          • entonces_99

            As opposed to “Rubber Hose Right,” which is one of those terms of mock abuse that friends like to trade with one another after a few brewskis.

            • chezami

              If you don’t make excuses for torture then don’t wear the ill-fitting shoe. If you do, tough shit. You earned it.

              • entonces_99

                I can (and do) point out that “Rubber Hose Right” is “a term flung to tar people as enemies” without myself making excuses for torture.

                • chezami

                  No. It’s a term used to make clear that people who defend torture under bullshit euphemisms like “enhanced interrogation” are, in fact, defending torture. When you whine about such clarity, you are, in fact, defending torture and those who argue for it. But then you knew that.

        • jroberts548

          “Freedom of worship” vs. “freedom of religion” isn’t a Marxist ideal. It doesn’t have anything to do with Marxism. It certainly isn’t the result of applying Marxist dialectical materialist critique to culture. You are at every point confused about what “Cultural Marxism” applies to.

          • Dave G.

            Fortunately, most who use that term probably aren’t trying to establish a serious attempt at applying Marxist dialectical materialist critique to culture. They are using the term in the way ‘fascists’ was used when I was growing up. Usually used by more liberal speakers to take swipes at individuals who did things like not carry a Madonna album, or refuse to play a heavy metal song on the radio. Not a serious academic treatise on the development of fascism. In this case, ‘freedom of worship’ has echoes of the old Soviet ‘freedom of belief’ that was long on promise, short on delivery. Since most who are saying it’s time to end this notion that religion and speech shouldn’t be modified based upon the real Truths (that is, liberal values), and are of course typically from the left of center, using Cultural Marxist might be a bit sloppy, but it ought to get our attention. Not to see if they are being accurate on some academic level regarding the definition of Marxism, but if they are right about the threat they see hovering on the horizon.

  • HornOrSilk
  • Sue Korlan

    I read an excellent article on this subject at
    Http:// hotair.com/archives/2015/03/28/video-protests-over-indiana-version-of-rfra-seem-to-miss-one-important-point/