Religious-Right Shriekout over Marriage Equality

by Dan Quinn

The U.S. Supreme Court’s refusal to hear appeals to lower court rulings overturning same-sex marriage bans could very quickly lead to marriage equality in at least 30 states and possibly all states not far into the future. So religious-righters and their politician pals are in meltdown mode.

Peter LaBarbera of the despicable Americans For Truth About Homosexuality is pointing at the Bible and calling for “civil disobedience on a massive scale” in opposition to marriage equality. That echoes calls from Southern white bigots for “massive resistance” to the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling striking down school segregation in 1954 — calls that didn’t stop integration but contributed to racial animosity and violence.

Bryan Fischer from the anti-gay hate group American Family Association, which Texas Gov. Rick Perry asked to organize his football stadium prayer extravaganza in 2011, compared marriage equality to slavery:

“Today’s Supreme Court ruling is the Dred Scott of gay marriage. Legalizes something morally indefensible.”

Closer to home, gay-obsessed Jonathan Saenz at Texas Values comforted himself by noting that the Supreme Court’s sort of non-decision on Monday doesn’t make same-sex marriage legal in the Lone Star State — yet. It appears that the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals will still have a say on that (although likely not the final say). But Saenz also repeated the well-worn lies that allowing LGBT people to marry will hurt children and somehow threaten religious freedom for everybody else:

“Redefining marriage comes at a high cost: it costs kids either a mom or a dad (who are not interchangeable), and it costs people of faith their First Amendment religious freedom rights as government imposes the new definition across all aspects of society.”

We find it remarkable that someone’s religious freedom could be dependent on government discriminating against other people. But that’s the “logic” Saenz offers.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz was also upset Monday, calling the court’s decision “judicial activism at its worst”:

“The Constitution entrusts state legislatures, elected by the People, to define marriage consistent with the values and mores of their citizens.  Unelected judges should not be imposing their policy preferences to subvert the considered judgments of democratically elected legislatures.”

That seems hypocritical, to say the least, considering that Cruz wants the courts to strike down Obamacare as unconstitutional even though that action would “subvert the considered judgment of democratically elected” members of Congress who passed the Affordable Care Act in 2010.

Of course, even if he didn’t want to, Cruz has to sound militant on this issue. That’s because religious-righters are insisting that Republican politicians take a stand against equality. Iowa-based talk show host Steve Deace, who apparently thinks watching two women kiss is a threat to liberty, said the Supreme Court’s non-decision on Monday threatens the “35-year marriage between Christians and the Republican Party.”

Former Texas Republican Party Chairman Tom Pauken seems to agree, calling out a supposed “lack of political courage on the issue of marriage by GOP leaders.”

We wonder how much courage it really takes for a Republican politician to kowtow to the anti-gay fanatics who dominate the GOP base, especially in Texas. It seems to us that the more courageous are those who stand up for equality, not against it. So who are those courageous politicians? Maybe we’ll finally get a chance to see — but don’t hold your breath.

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