Caffeinated Thoughts contributor Emmett McGroarty & Jane Robbins both of whom work for American Principles Project remind readers in a recent op/ed for The Public Discourse how the religious freedom of individuals have been violated in order to defer to the homosexual agenda:

The denigration of religious freedom extends to areas of purely private, commercial conduct. Governments increasingly apply nondiscrimination statutes to force private individuals and businesses to participate in conduct that violates their religious beliefs. So far, defenses based on the First Amendment have been unavailing. Some examples:

  • The New Mexico Human Rights Commission found that a small photography business unlawfully discriminated against a same-sex couple by declining, because of the owners’ religious beliefs, to photograph the couple’s commitment ceremony (Willock v. Elane Photography).
  • The California Supreme Court ruled that doctors violated the state nondiscrimination statute by refusing, on religious grounds, to artificially inseminate a woman who was in a lesbian relationship (North Coast Women’s Care Medical Group v. San Diego County Superior Court).
  • A federal court in California found that administrators of an Arizona adoption-facilitation website were subject to California’s statute banning discrimination in public accommodations because they refused to post profiles of same-sex couples as potential parents (Butler v. Adoption Media).
  • A New Jersey agency found probable cause to believe that a church violated a public-accommodations statute by declining to rent its pavilion for a same-sex wedding (a different agency, enforcing nondiscrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, revoked the tax exemption the church had enjoyed under a statute promoting the use of private property as green space) (Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Ass’n of United Methodist Church v. Vespa-Papaleo).
  • A federal appeals court found that an employer’s denial of insurance coverage to an employee’s same-sex partner constituted illegal sex discrimination (In Re Levenson).

In none of these cases did the religious defendants discriminate against homosexuals just because of their orientation—i.e., they did not refuse to serve them in a restaurant or work on their cars or give them standard medical care. Rather, they declined to participate in an endeavor, such as same-sex marriage or adoption, which was inconsistent with their religious beliefs. But the courts and agencies found that nondiscrimination trumps religious values. The courts will not protect a for-profit business that wants to operate according to biblical principles.

This further demonstrates why we must have a Religious Freedom Restoration Act in Iowa (among other states).

Originally posted at American Principles in Action

7 comments
  1. I will definitely grant that a church does not need to rent out their pavilion to whom they elect not to, the photography business, whatever, those are a dime a dozen. But I would like to discuss WHY if the adoption service had no religious ties, they have ANY reason to decline a same sex couple. 

    1. How do we know they had no religious ties?  Regardless, there are plenty of good “common sense” reasons that same-sex couples should not be allowed to adopt.  As I see it, why do they even have to give a reason?   

    2. People are still bringing up the Ocean City boardwalk pavilion issue? The problem was that the Camp Meeting  Association took state, federal and local funds for maintenance and tax deferments for opening their property to the general public. You take money for public use of your property, you accept the responsibilities outlines by the state. If they wanted to pick and choose who could use their ‘church’ facilities (which remains a bit questionable), then they should have kept it private and paid for it themselves.

  2. I wish I could be a little more sympathetic, but it seems those howling the loudest about their religious freedom seem to have no regard to the religious freedom of others who see no problem with same-sex marriage or homosexual relationships.

    How far should these business people be allowed to go to “practice” their religion.  Could a restaurateur kick out a gay couple found to be celebrating their anniversary?  I also wonder if they are consistent in denying services to a divorced person who gets married or where the couples are of different faiths.

  3. The cake baker’s hypocrisy is flowing over.  Does she refuse to bake cakes for adulterers who are probably a majority of her business?  She says she walks with God.  Fine, then walk with God all of the time, not just some of the time.   Don’t tippy toe around and walk with God only when it’s convenient. 

  4. why can’t you guys be more like us jews? We don’t b—h and moan about the gays and how they are violating their religious freedom.

  5. Shane,
     
    As a point of clarification, In Re: Levinson does not deal with a private employer, but rather a governmental employee claiming that the government discriminated against him in the course of his employment.  Given that the premise of the piece is on the effect of non-discrimination laws against private actors, it is likely inappropriate to lump the case in with the other cited cases.

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