On Marriage: Never Give In. Never, Never, Never...

The battle raging over religious liberty on several fronts across the U.S. has been quite revealing.  Most telling are the lengths to which liberals continue to go to ensure that the homosexual agenda roars on undeterred.  As Ross Douthat has alluded, the political and cultural mêlée we’ve endured the last several days is because the perversion on marriage wrought by liberals has prospered to the point that an ever growing number of Americans have found themselves in the crosshairs of today’s gaystapo.

Interestingly, and sadly, religious liberty laws like what passed in Indiana – like the one that failed in my state of Georgia, the one sent back to the legislature by the governor of Arkansas, and that exist across the rest of the country – have served as little to no protection for business owners, who, because of their religious convictions, want nothing to do with SSM.  This is especially the case in states where SSM is legally recognized.

As Tobin Grant noted on the Washington Post recently, “[i]n the 20 years since RFRA became federal law, there has not been a single case in which a person successfully used RFRA to get around civil rights laws.”  And if SSM is legal in a state (as the liberal courts ensured in Indiana), it is a “civil right.”  In spite of this, liberals insist that such legislation is nothing more than a license to “discriminate.”

Of course, the timing of these attempts at mimicking the federal RFRA is what has liberals up in arms.  In part, they are correct.  These attempts at religious liberty legislation are, at least in part, a conservative political response to what is rightly seen as a rogue judiciary forcing marriage perversion upon states whose electorate overwhelmingly rejected such perversion.  Thus, this battle over religious liberty has turned into yet another debate over SSM.

This has brought liberals back to using their worn-out cry of “discrimination.”  Whether used as a tool in an attempt to paint the police as oppressors, to justify their ridiculous environmental agenda, to defend the “right” to kill children in the womb, to promote virtually any kind of sexual act that deviates from the standards God gave us, and as fast and freely as they can spend other people’s money, liberals resort to bawling “discrimination”!

And they do it because it works.  Rampant accusations of “discrimination” got GOP governors and many legislators in the states mentioned above to kowtow to the modern militant homosexual agenda.  “No one should be harassed or mistreated because of who they are, who they love or what they believe,” said Indiana’s Governor Mike Pence as he sought to “clarify” his state’s foray into RFRA.  Liberals took gleeful notice.

After Arkansas’s legislature passed their version of RFRA, Republican governor Asa Hutchinson declined to sign it and sent the bill back to the GOP-controlled legislature to be “rewritten.”  Hutchinson said, “We want to be known as a state that does not discriminate, but understands tolerance.”  Notice that?  Liberals got a GOP governor, in the midst of a religious liberty fight, no less, to tickle their ears with two of their favorites.  It’s as if Slick Willie himself trapped Hutchinson in the Clinton Library and wouldn’t let him out until he yelled “discrimination!” and “tolerance!”

What’s more, many so-called conservative pundits in the media are very quick to express their support for the various and new-found “rights” (including marriage) of homosexuals.  Fox’s Megyn Kelly and Bill O’Reilly have both been sympathetic to SSM and the “rights” of homosexuals for some time now.  David Brooks captured well the current “progressive” thinking that has infected some conservatives in this matter when he recently wrote, “If denying gays and lesbians their full civil rights and dignity is not wrong, then nothing is wrong. Gays and lesbians should not only be permitted to marry and live as they want, but should be honored for doing so.”  (Imagine that.  We should “honor” a lifestyle notorious for disease, depression, and promiscuity.)

When overturning the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the U.S. Supreme Court’s swing vote, Anthony Kennedy, wrote that DOMA created a “stigma upon all who enter into” same-sex “marriages.”  He added that the law’s effect was to “demean” those in same-sex “marriages.”  Kennedy also wrote that the “avowed purpose and practical effect” of DOMA was to “impose a disadvantage, a separate status, and so a stigma” on those in same-sex “marriages.”  In other words, the federal government was “intolerant” and thus “discriminating” against those in same-sex “marriages.”

I wonder if Justice Kennedy and his fellow homosexual apologists will have the same sympathies towards the polygamous, incestuous, or those same-sex couples who want to “marry” for reasons that have nothing to do with sex.  Will he be as concerned about their “separate status” or the “stigma” they must surely suffer as their relationships are currently deemed less than others?  In other words, are not these alternative (or perverse) relationships also suffering “discrimination”?

Of course they are.  Though liberals are loath to admit such, every position in the marriage debate requires a measure of “discrimination.”  As an experiment, try to get a supporter of SSM to declare how the U.S. should legally define marriage.  (My favorite line of questioning is “How would you ‘discriminate’ and define marriage?”)  In spite of all their blustering in this matter, it is next to impossible to get an answer.

Perhaps Republican politicians should resort to such an approach.  Sadly, they are far too eager to capitulate.  It takes a strong will, a firm conscience, and a sure sense of what is right to stand against the homosexual agenda.  Unfortunately, few politicians today can muster such character.  This is especially the case if they fear a hit to their bottom line.

With the avalanche of court decisions in favor of SSM, sensing a swing in public opinion, and looking only to their bottom line, significant numbers of corporations are lining up against the truth in the marriage debate.  A few weeks ago, more than 300 corporations issued a friend-of-the-court brief in the upcoming Supreme Court case that will decide if same-sex “marriage” will be forced on all of the U.S.

Many of these same corporations are now also pressuring states currently considering RFRA laws.  Of course, many of these offended industries have been doing business for years with states that already had RFRA laws on their books, and many of them seem to have no problem doing business with communists or Islamists.

The sports industry has also fully embraced the “discrimination” meme, or is being heavily pressured to do so, when it comes to marriage and the homosexual agenda.  A letter sent by Chad Griffin, president of the homosexual propagandists known as the Human Rights Campaign, to Roger Goodell, commissioner of the National Football League, said of Georgia’s religious liberty bill:

… Atlanta is a top contender for the Super Bowl in 2019, but this law directly contradicts the NFL’s nondiscrimination policy and values of acceptance and inclusivity. Should this bill become law, Georgia will not be a welcoming place for LGBT people or many other minorities.

NASCAR is disappointed by the recent legislation passed in Indiana,” said chief communications officer Brett Jewkes.  NCAA president Mark Emmert was “especially concerned” about the Indiana legislation.  Duke’s Coach K didn’t seem to be as concerned, and the living legend was called out on CNN for his silence.  Former NFL punter and CNN contributor Kris Kluwe, who’s a rabid proponent of SSM, said, “[I]f you are a superstar athlete or a superstar head coach, it is your obligation to be aware of these issues because you will be asked about them and you do have a platform to talk about these things and you should be knowledgeable about it because that is the world you live in. That is your society.”

Like so many small business owners recently, any celebrity, even homosexual celebrities, caught deviating from liberal orthodoxy on homosexuality is threatened, castigated, disparaged, mocked, boycotted, and so on.  And when a pizza parlor in Indiana, and a florist in Georgia, decided to “talk about these things” (mainly because they were asked about them)…well, you know the results.

Al Mohler was also right when last year he concluded, “We are in the midst of a massive revolution in morality.”  And of course, “sexual morality is at the center of this revolution.”  We are indeed at the “crossroads” Mohler referenced, and unavoidable showdowns are looming.  More and more Americans, whether they like it or not, are being forced to make difficult moral decisions.  In spite of the willingness of many mainline Republicans to do so (because so many would love for all of this to just go away), the left is not silent on the social (moral) issues.

In other words, many Americans, who would prefer to remain on the sidelines as we continue to debate the moral issues in America, are being forced to declare with whom they stand.  This fight is not for the weak, but like the battle for life in the womb, it is certainly worth having.  And as with abortion, if the courts ignore the truth on marriage, our efforts must continue.  We certainly can’t expect those who’ve aligned themselves with the enemy of truth to behave honorably.  Nevertheless, as Pastor Rick Warren instructs us, we cannot be afraid to be unpopular (which is very hard for most politicians and celebrities), and we must remember that the only way to be relevant is to make sure that our words and actions align with eternal truths.  Don’t worry if you’re on “the right side of history.”  You just need to be on the right side.

Trevor Grant Thomas: At the Intersection of Politics, Science, Faith, and Reason.  Trevor and his wife Michelle are the authors of Debt Free Living in a Debt Filled World.  www.trevorgrantthomas.com; tthomas@trevorgrantthomas.com

The battle raging over religious liberty on several fronts across the U.S. has been quite revealing.  Most telling are the lengths to which liberals continue to go to ensure that the homosexual agenda roars on undeterred.  As Ross Douthat has alluded, the political and cultural mêlée we’ve endured the last several days is because the perversion on marriage wrought by liberals has prospered to the point that an ever growing number of Americans have found themselves in the crosshairs of today’s gaystapo.

Interestingly, and sadly, religious liberty laws like what passed in Indiana – like the one that failed in my state of Georgia, the one sent back to the legislature by the governor of Arkansas, and that exist across the rest of the country – have served as little to no protection for business owners, who, because of their religious convictions, want nothing to do with SSM.  This is especially the case in states where SSM is legally recognized.

As Tobin Grant noted on the Washington Post recently, “[i]n the 20 years since RFRA became federal law, there has not been a single case in which a person successfully used RFRA to get around civil rights laws.”  And if SSM is legal in a state (as the liberal courts ensured in Indiana), it is a “civil right.”  In spite of this, liberals insist that such legislation is nothing more than a license to “discriminate.”

Of course, the timing of these attempts at mimicking the federal RFRA is what has liberals up in arms.  In part, they are correct.  These attempts at religious liberty legislation are, at least in part, a conservative political response to what is rightly seen as a rogue judiciary forcing marriage perversion upon states whose electorate overwhelmingly rejected such perversion.  Thus, this battle over religious liberty has turned into yet another debate over SSM.

This has brought liberals back to using their worn-out cry of “discrimination.”  Whether used as a tool in an attempt to paint the police as oppressors, to justify their ridiculous environmental agenda, to defend the “right” to kill children in the womb, to promote virtually any kind of sexual act that deviates from the standards God gave us, and as fast and freely as they can spend other people’s money, liberals resort to bawling “discrimination”!

And they do it because it works.  Rampant accusations of “discrimination” got GOP governors and many legislators in the states mentioned above to kowtow to the modern militant homosexual agenda.  “No one should be harassed or mistreated because of who they are, who they love or what they believe,” said Indiana’s Governor Mike Pence as he sought to “clarify” his state’s foray into RFRA.  Liberals took gleeful notice.

After Arkansas’s legislature passed their version of RFRA, Republican governor Asa Hutchinson declined to sign it and sent the bill back to the GOP-controlled legislature to be “rewritten.”  Hutchinson said, “We want to be known as a state that does not discriminate, but understands tolerance.”  Notice that?  Liberals got a GOP governor, in the midst of a religious liberty fight, no less, to tickle their ears with two of their favorites.  It’s as if Slick Willie himself trapped Hutchinson in the Clinton Library and wouldn’t let him out until he yelled “discrimination!” and “tolerance!”

What’s more, many so-called conservative pundits in the media are very quick to express their support for the various and new-found “rights” (including marriage) of homosexuals.  Fox’s Megyn Kelly and Bill O’Reilly have both been sympathetic to SSM and the “rights” of homosexuals for some time now.  David Brooks captured well the current “progressive” thinking that has infected some conservatives in this matter when he recently wrote, “If denying gays and lesbians their full civil rights and dignity is not wrong, then nothing is wrong. Gays and lesbians should not only be permitted to marry and live as they want, but should be honored for doing so.”  (Imagine that.  We should “honor” a lifestyle notorious for disease, depression, and promiscuity.)

When overturning the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the U.S. Supreme Court’s swing vote, Anthony Kennedy, wrote that DOMA created a “stigma upon all who enter into” same-sex “marriages.”  He added that the law’s effect was to “demean” those in same-sex “marriages.”  Kennedy also wrote that the “avowed purpose and practical effect” of DOMA was to “impose a disadvantage, a separate status, and so a stigma” on those in same-sex “marriages.”  In other words, the federal government was “intolerant” and thus “discriminating” against those in same-sex “marriages.”

I wonder if Justice Kennedy and his fellow homosexual apologists will have the same sympathies towards the polygamous, incestuous, or those same-sex couples who want to “marry” for reasons that have nothing to do with sex.  Will he be as concerned about their “separate status” or the “stigma” they must surely suffer as their relationships are currently deemed less than others?  In other words, are not these alternative (or perverse) relationships also suffering “discrimination”?

Of course they are.  Though liberals are loath to admit such, every position in the marriage debate requires a measure of “discrimination.”  As an experiment, try to get a supporter of SSM to declare how the U.S. should legally define marriage.  (My favorite line of questioning is “How would you ‘discriminate’ and define marriage?”)  In spite of all their blustering in this matter, it is next to impossible to get an answer.

Perhaps Republican politicians should resort to such an approach.  Sadly, they are far too eager to capitulate.  It takes a strong will, a firm conscience, and a sure sense of what is right to stand against the homosexual agenda.  Unfortunately, few politicians today can muster such character.  This is especially the case if they fear a hit to their bottom line.

With the avalanche of court decisions in favor of SSM, sensing a swing in public opinion, and looking only to their bottom line, significant numbers of corporations are lining up against the truth in the marriage debate.  A few weeks ago, more than 300 corporations issued a friend-of-the-court brief in the upcoming Supreme Court case that will decide if same-sex “marriage” will be forced on all of the U.S.

Many of these same corporations are now also pressuring states currently considering RFRA laws.  Of course, many of these offended industries have been doing business for years with states that already had RFRA laws on their books, and many of them seem to have no problem doing business with communists or Islamists.

The sports industry has also fully embraced the “discrimination” meme, or is being heavily pressured to do so, when it comes to marriage and the homosexual agenda.  A letter sent by Chad Griffin, president of the homosexual propagandists known as the Human Rights Campaign, to Roger Goodell, commissioner of the National Football League, said of Georgia’s religious liberty bill:

… Atlanta is a top contender for the Super Bowl in 2019, but this law directly contradicts the NFL’s nondiscrimination policy and values of acceptance and inclusivity. Should this bill become law, Georgia will not be a welcoming place for LGBT people or many other minorities.

NASCAR is disappointed by the recent legislation passed in Indiana,” said chief communications officer Brett Jewkes.  NCAA president Mark Emmert was “especially concerned” about the Indiana legislation.  Duke’s Coach K didn’t seem to be as concerned, and the living legend was called out on CNN for his silence.  Former NFL punter and CNN contributor Kris Kluwe, who’s a rabid proponent of SSM, said, “[I]f you are a superstar athlete or a superstar head coach, it is your obligation to be aware of these issues because you will be asked about them and you do have a platform to talk about these things and you should be knowledgeable about it because that is the world you live in. That is your society.”

Like so many small business owners recently, any celebrity, even homosexual celebrities, caught deviating from liberal orthodoxy on homosexuality is threatened, castigated, disparaged, mocked, boycotted, and so on.  And when a pizza parlor in Indiana, and a florist in Georgia, decided to “talk about these things” (mainly because they were asked about them)…well, you know the results.

Al Mohler was also right when last year he concluded, “We are in the midst of a massive revolution in morality.”  And of course, “sexual morality is at the center of this revolution.”  We are indeed at the “crossroads” Mohler referenced, and unavoidable showdowns are looming.  More and more Americans, whether they like it or not, are being forced to make difficult moral decisions.  In spite of the willingness of many mainline Republicans to do so (because so many would love for all of this to just go away), the left is not silent on the social (moral) issues.

In other words, many Americans, who would prefer to remain on the sidelines as we continue to debate the moral issues in America, are being forced to declare with whom they stand.  This fight is not for the weak, but like the battle for life in the womb, it is certainly worth having.  And as with abortion, if the courts ignore the truth on marriage, our efforts must continue.  We certainly can’t expect those who’ve aligned themselves with the enemy of truth to behave honorably.  Nevertheless, as Pastor Rick Warren instructs us, we cannot be afraid to be unpopular (which is very hard for most politicians and celebrities), and we must remember that the only way to be relevant is to make sure that our words and actions align with eternal truths.  Don’t worry if you’re on “the right side of history.”  You just need to be on the right side.

Trevor Grant Thomas: At the Intersection of Politics, Science, Faith, and Reason.  Trevor and his wife Michelle are the authors of Debt Free Living in a Debt Filled World.  www.trevorgrantthomas.com; tthomas@trevorgrantthomas.com