Using Religion as a Weapon: The Truth Behind the Right’s Cynical Pro-Discrimination Campaign

It's been clear to observers over the last year that opponents of LGBT equality have cynically shifted their rhetoric from attacking same-sex marriage to promoting "religious liberty" as an excuse to discriminate. Now the website Five Thirty Eight details this shift. Read More

Well this is a bit of a surprise.

Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, speaking to Texas Tribune editor Evan Smith on Friday, pretty much said that if Kim Davis or someone like her doesn’t want to do her job, she can quit. In yet another surprise, Patrick added that, though he disagrees with it, the Supreme Court’s ruling allowing same-sex marriages is now the law of the land. The comments are a departure from his fellow Texas religious-righters who have spent months calling the ruling “lawless” and cheering for Davis to both keep her taxpayer-funded paycheck and the right to discriminate against committed same-sex couples seeking marriage licenses from her taxpayer-funded office.

Applause for the the lieutenant guv? Hold on. It may be he only said so because he painted himself into a rhetorical corner. Here’s how it went down.

Patrick’s comments came during a long conversation with Smith at the start of this year’s TribFest. The two were chatting about a law going into effect next year that will allow concealed handguns on the state’s college campuses. Smith pointed out that some professors have expressed opposition to the law. Here, according to the Austin American-Statesman,… Read More

Religious-right activists and politicians like Mike Huckabee and Ted Cruz have been scrambling over each other to proclaim their support for Kim Davis. But a new poll shows that an overwhelming majority of Americans oppose the Kentucky clerk’s refusal, on religious grounds, to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Released this morning, the ABC News/Washington Post poll includes a couple of key questions on religion and  marriage. The verdict: most Americans say one’s individual religious beliefs aren’t more important than equality under the law for all.

In general, when there’s a conflict between (someone’s religious beliefs) and (the need to treat everyone equally under the law), which do you think is more important?

Religious beliefs: 19% Equal under the law: 74% No opinion: 6%

As you may know, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that gay and lesbian couples have the right to marry. Nonetheless a county clerk in Kentucky has refused to issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples, saying she objects on religious grounds. Do you think this county clerk should or should not be required to issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples?

Required to issue: 63% Not required to issue: 33%… Read More

When it comes to Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk now in jail for refusing to federal obey a court order to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, even some of the folks at Fox News are getting it right. Here is commentator Gregg Jarrett speaking in a Fox News panel discussion he hosted on Monday:

“When she took the job she swore to uphold the law. We rely on government officials to do that. They can’t just pick and choose what laws they like and which ones they don’t. If they were allowed to do that, wouldn’t that lead to chaos, anarchy and so forth?”

Speaking on the same program, criminal defense attorney Sharon Liko dismissed the argument by a lawyer for Davis that the Supreme Court doesn’t have the constitutional authority to enforce its ruling on same-sex marriages:

“It’s just a ridiculously stupid statement. The Supreme Court does just that. They determine the constitutionality of issues; they resolve these kinds of disputes.”

(We should note that Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who is seeking the Republican nomination for president, has filed a proposed constitutional amendment and separate legislation that would roll back the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in favor of theRead More

Earlier today we saw this piece in the Dallas Morning News that observed how Sen. Ted Cruz had taken a more measured tone than his Republican presidential rivals on the case of Kim Davis, the Kentucky county clerk still refusing to obey the law and issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

But that was before Davis was held in contempt and jailed by a federal judge this morning. And now Cruz seems to be madder than his dad Rafael Cruz always seems to be. Cruz’s statement following the contempt finding:

Today, judicial lawlessness crossed into judicial tyranny. Today, for the first time ever, the government arrested a Christian woman for living according to her faith. This is wrong. This is not America.

No, Sen. Cruz, Davis was held in contempt and jailed not for her faith, but for her refusal to obey multiple court orders telling her to do, you know, the job she’s collecting a paycheck to do. A paycheck, by the way, that doesn’t bounce thanks to the taxes paid by some of the same people Davis is discriminating against.

But anyway, Cruz continued:

Those who are persecuting Kim Davis believe that Christians… Read More

Texas Freedom Network

Them’s the rules 🤷🏽‍♀️ Learn more and become an advocate at TFN.org/sex-Ed pic.twitter.com/wKmw…