Can a ban on same sex marriage be lifted because of religious freedom? A liberal Protestant denomination in North Carolina thinks so.
...a liberal Protestant denomination on Monday filed a lawsuit arguing that North Carolina is unconstitutionally restricting religious freedom by barring clergy members from blessing gay and lesbian couples.
This is brilliant. 1. The people who want to make sure that no gays anywhere can get married seem to think it is about their personal religious freedom, so this should be held just as valid, right? These gays believe in Jebus, right? 2. If they fight it, they are fighting against the religious freedom of other Christians.
The denomination argues that a North Carolina law criminalizing the religious solemnization of weddings without a state-issued marriage license violates the First Amendment.
To be fair, it appears there is a law on the books in NC that doesn't allow even the only-in-name-but-not-legally-binding ceremony. So, essentially, if you want to perform a gay marriage in your own church, and aren't seeking anything state-sanctioned, it is still criminal. Which is insane. I kind of can't believe that ever happened.
So it would seem that this is a pretty clear violation of the First Amendment.
I am sure that this strategy might not be the worst idea even in the case of legal marriages. If a church believes that homosexual marriages are sanctioned by god and should be sanctioned by the government as well, isn't there a case for religious freedom here?
I only bring it up because it seems you can use the words "religious freedom" (and be a white Christian) and have a "case" for just about anything these days. Want your kid to be allowed to bully a gay kid at school? Religious freedom! Want everyone who works for you to not be able to afford to prevent pregnancy? Religious freedom! Why not this?