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In our opinion: Honoring religious conscience

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  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 1:01 a.m.

    Contemporary capitalism has advanced a widening gap between the super wealthy and the working class. This should be of some concern to you. What impact might the kind of religious liberty you advocate have on this widening gap and its potential to shred society?

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 4:31 a.m.

    The DN will certainly get posts from the standard politically correct crowd arguing that "they are tolerant and anyone who disagrees is a bigot": while remaining oblivious to the fact that such arguments merely prove that they are wrong on both counts.
    Religious freedom is not a negotiable item; it is a constitutional guarantee.

  • Apocalypse please Bluffdale, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 7:38 a.m.

    Please don't be prejudiced toward us, when we are prejudiced toward others.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Nov. 17, 2013 8:30 a.m.

    A man's religion is between God and himself; it is not between the man and the State on any level of government. The Declaration of Independence declares: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

    The founding fathers knew that government did not grant rights to us, but that our Creator gave us unalienable rights; then, to guarantee the right to worship as we pleased, without government dictating to us how we should worship or what our doctrine and covenants should be, the founding fathers added this to the Constitution: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;"

    Government cannot dictate to us individually how we are to worship or how we are to perform religious covenants. Government cannot dictate to an establishment of religion its doctrine or how it is to perform its covenants. Marriage is a sacred religious covenant. Government has no authority to define marriage. That definition belongs to God and to God alone.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 9:01 a.m.

    People of faith are not being denied their right to conscience. As individuals. But rights apply first to individuals, and people are recognising that religion no longer has the right to try to interfere with that process. Religions' desire to oppress others will have to take short shrift in favour of rights to those it wishes to oppress. That's ok, it's just religion after all. It doesn't have to like gay marriage, even though there really isn't anything to dislike about it.

  • spring street SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 11:30 a.m.

    Pacifists are not forced to serve in combat roles in the military - they are, however, required to serve and work with individuals who have and currently do serve in combat roles, in spite of the fact that combat violates their religious principles.

    There is no reason to treat those who oppose same-sex marriage any differently than we treat those who oppose war and killing - they can choose not to participate in it for themselves, they can teach their children that it is wrong and against their beliefs, but they cannot act out against those who hold a different viewpoint.

    You have the right to your beliefs - you do not have the right to punish those whose beliefs are different than yours.

  • spring street SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 11:42 a.m.

    So I have to wonder do those of you that agree with the DN and if the DN itself likes the fact that "counter intelligence," always places you in the box of being a victim?

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    Nov. 17, 2013 12:35 p.m.

    I'm always reminded of an old adage. Your right to swing your fist ends where my nose begins. Your right to religious freedom ends when it impacts my lawfully granted rights.

  • nonceleb Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 12:51 p.m.

    "... untold consequences for children." Children are already being raised by gay couples. Would not being recognized as a LEGAL family actually result in positive consequences for their children?

    Property tax exemption protects "entanglements" which could endanger religious freedom? The exemption is the trade-off for religion not imposing itself on the democratic political system - separation of church and state.

    The exemption helps to reduce "government expenditures"? It dramatically reduces tax revenues which causes smaller state budgets and larger federal deficits. Reduction in government expenditures is due to the need to cut spending because of a lack of this revenue source more than it is churches having more money for charity. If churches were taxed it would actually encourage more tax-exempt charity.

    "... to live according to one's conscience" does not mean you can impose your belief system on others and discriminate against them. You can still practice your beliefs unrestrained in your own personal life - which is what really matters.

    There is so much flawed logic in this article.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 1:28 p.m.

    The honoring of religion and churches has not come about because of the good that religion and churches do, but rather by the political power that religions and churches have over the governments of people.

    If the work in building a new nation was inspired by God, why did the founding fathers do it in secrete.

    To me the Bill of Rights was driven by the greed and corruption of the governments of the colonies many of whom were church controlled. It has been my observation that when people do the work of god, they tend to shout it our. The lack of concern for the individuals welfare in the Bill of Rights tells me that the motivation changed from the Declaration of Independence.

    I believe that religious, church, charity, and all such do not deserve the special accommodations that they claim.

  • Really??? Kearns, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 4:47 p.m.

    "We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may."

    I like this article of faith. If only we could live up to what it says.

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 5:54 p.m.

    The extreme left posting here once again show they have no understanding of the 1st amendment, and what freedom of religion and speech and assembly is ands means.

    If you deny religious people and religious groups access to the public square , a public voice in the affairs of this country, then you might as well tear up the first amendment.

    @pragmatistferlife

    Would care to show any example where you "rights" have been impacted?

    The government does NOT "lawfully grant rights".

    So, I take it your right to your beliefs and ideologies ends when it impacts my "lawfully granted rights"?

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 6:10 p.m.

    spring street

    Those who fight for religious freedom are only victims if they allow those who seek to deny religious freedom to get away with being perpetrators*.

    Saying NO to a perpetrator is the antithesis of being a victim.

    Although I do realize that it must be very frustrating for the left to have someone mock their game (but not my problem)

    (* a category that includes passive/aggressive politicos who perpetrate in the name of victims)

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 6:29 p.m.

    I'm sure that the Deseret News Editorial board is completely happy to allow Evangelicals to hang "No Mormons Served Here" signs in their windows.

    Bigotry, which is what this OP Ed promotes, harms people. You are not allowed to use your religion to harm others; that's why the government reserves the right to reign in religious excesses.

    Additionally, how much do you want to bet that these "conscientious objectors" to same-sex marriage and serving LGBT couples enjoy R rated moves that promote sex out of wedlock? How many of them watch TV and have nothing to say about all the pre-marital sex on these shows? That is what is called "hypocrisy", and I'm sure that these so-called "Christians" have read the passages in the bible where Jesus (as well as the OT) have nothing but condemnation for hypocrites.

  • spring street SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 6:33 p.m.

    @CI
    So how exactly did your comment stand up for religious freedom, al I see is a primitive strike to try to squelch anyone that may disagree with you by claiming they are attacking the DN and in the process make the DN out to be a victim. If you have a valid case to make for religious freedom why don't you do the DN a favor and just make it.

  • spring street SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 6:45 p.m.

    sorry that should be preemptive

  • Pagan Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 7:18 p.m.

    Your 'conscience'…?

    Stops, at my life.

    Focus on your OWN actions before trying to dictate the actions, of others.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 9:02 p.m.

    spring street

    Well comments by Hutterite, Ultra Bob, Pagan, RanchHand, Apocalypse please, pragmatistferlife, nonceleb, Marxist and yourself would seem to indicate that a preemptive strike was downright prophetic.

    And I did make a case for religious liberty - you were just were too busy feigning offence (aka I know you are but what am I) to grasp it - so let me repeat: Religious freedom is not a negotiable item; it is a constitutional guarantee

    Nothing else really needs to be said about it

  • intervention slc, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 9:27 p.m.

    @CI
    I have to wonder if you stopped to think that your first comment may set the tone for the way other respond? perhaps there is a reason you feel the need to set such a tome.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 17, 2013 9:47 p.m.

    intervention

    "perhaps there is a reason you feel the need to set such a tome"

    Yes there is; the most intolerant people I have experienced in my life are those that think they are tolerant because they perpetrate in the name of rescuing victims.

    therefore if my tone made perps uncomfortable - good

  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    Nov. 17, 2013 11:12 p.m.

    @ CI: "Religious freedom is not a negotiable item; it is a constitutional guarantee"

    Child marriages, polygamy, human sacrifice, child abuse and neglect, female genital mutilation, spousal abuse.

    We place many limits on religious freedom - limits you support and agree with. Are you suggesting these limits should be removed?

  • mark Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 1:32 a.m.

    "so let me repeat: Religious freedom is not a negotiable item; it is a constitutional guarantee"

    Yeah, that's not true.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 4:05 a.m.

    It is a real shame, then, that Michael Otterson of the LDS Church's Public Affairs Department would read, in purported behalf of the Church, a statement of support for an ordinance in Salt Lake City that would in fact strip religious PEOPLE of some of their private property and business rights of discrimination relative to their religious beliefs.

    Should have stuck to what was right instead of trying to win the praise of the world.

  • RanchHand Huntsville, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 5:11 a.m.

    @Counter Intelligence;

    Fighting against bigotry, even when it comes from religion, is not taking away your religious freedom. We are fighting the bigotry of the religious. The fact that you start a business means you agree to operate within the law; and the law says you can't discriminate against customers of a certain genre just "because". If your religion is telling you that bigotry is okay, than I suggest you find yourself a better religion because the one telling to that bigotry is okay is not a very good religion.

  • pragmatistferlife salt lake city, utah
    Nov. 18, 2013 7:51 a.m.

    There's a new book out that speaks directly to this squabble. I've only begun to read it but the premise is clear. The book is "Moral Tribes". It's premise is that we have evolved with moral principles to solve the problems of cooperation. However, the original evolution of morals was to solve problems in small groups, even between families. Unfortunately we haven't evolved beyond that ability but our problems and particularly our societal problems have gotten much bigger and more complicated.

    The authors thought is that we have to consciously develop new moral principles that encompass the needs of whole societies not just the few we know and care about.

    In other words "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" needs to somehow include all religions, non believers straight, gay, fortunate and unfortunate.

    Unfortunately as soon as you say "all rights are granted by God" or the government (society) does not grant rights that meta moral conversation is dead. You've shrunk back into your small group and denied the last 300 years of history.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Nov. 18, 2013 9:04 a.m.

    I just want to know WHY I was hammered and blasted DAILY on these DN comment boards for defending the rights of Muslims to build an Islamic Cultural Center in New York -- by "fellow" uber-conservatives Mormons?

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 9:31 a.m.

    Re: "You have the right to your beliefs - you do not have the right to punish those whose beliefs are different than yours."

    Apparently, however, disingenuous LGBT activists and callow liberals are OK with those whose beliefs differ from ours punishing US.

    That's the real problem, here. LGBT have always had the same rights as anyone else. But, unsatisfied with that, they now seek "rights" that place them in a special, privileged position, from which they can hurl, not just insults, but lawsuits and bureaucratic decrees, as well, against those of us that don't share their belief in what, for all but the tiniest fraction of human history, has been recognized as evil, frivolous, or counterproductive.

    In this brave new liberal world: Punishing them for their beliefs? Bad. Them punishing us for our beliefs? Good.

    That's great bizzarro-world logic.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 9:41 a.m.

    The Constitution guarantees religious freedom for churches not individuals.

    The only words about religious freedom are those found in the First Amendment:

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;”…

    The words “establishment of religion” can be taken two ways. First as a existing church itself and second as an official government religion. In either case the word “thereof” in the second part of the phrase, is taken to relate to the subject of the first part. The second part must be taken to be “or prohibiting the free exercise of an establishment of religion”.

    Therefore no protection for the individual person’s freedom of religion. If we are to have Constitutional freedom of religion for individuals, we must amend the Constitution by public referendum.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 9:47 a.m.

    Re: ". . . the law says you can't discriminate against customers of a certain genre just 'because'."

    So, a friend who is LGBT and who owns a T-shirt silk-screening business can, and should, be forced by the government to make T-shirts for an upcoming Traditional Family Symposium, in which traditionalists will discuss ways to maintain marriage laws in their traditional form?

    Or another who owns a court reporting business should be forced by government bureaucrats to take a stenotype transcript of their proceedings?

    How about my friend, a cancer survivor, who owns a catering business? Should government be enabled to force her into catering a cigar aficionado smoke-in?

    Or, how about forcing a holocaust survivor or family member to cater a KKK rally?

    I suspect our liberal and libertine friends would balk at all these. And, it should be noted that note of these cases involve government enacting a law "prohibiting the free exercise" of religion, as is the case with laws requiring religious-owned business to participate in LGBT ceremonies and observances.

  • glendenbg Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 10:45 a.m.

    Allowing same sex couples to marry does not post a threat to religious freedom - it does not infringe upon the rights of believers to worship as they see fit, to proclaim their morality, to believe as they wish to believe. Believers can refuse to invite gay people to their barbecues and churc potlucks.

    The question is whether or not businesses can legally discriminate. The longstanding answer is (generally) no. Businesses are public accommodations - open to and serving the general public. As long as the customer is not asking the business to break the law, they can't legally refuse to provide their good or service to the customer on the basis of race, religion, national origin, physical or mental ability, gender and increasingly, sexual orientation. A lesbian deli owner can't refuse to sell someone a sandwich because they're an evangelical Christian.

    To me, it's a question of asking business owners to make business decisions based on purely business reasons. If my check clears, why should you care about my race, religion, sexual orientation, national origin or physical ability?

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Nov. 18, 2013 11:07 a.m.

    Just curious --

    Why was I blasted and getting pasted DAILY by conservatives for defending Muslims seeking to build an Islamic Cultural Center in New York?

    And where the Deseret News back then?

  • Contrariusiest mid-state, TN
    Nov. 18, 2013 11:25 a.m.

    @procuradorfiscal --

    These are interesting questions. In order to answer them, however, you have to look a bit more deeply into the issues of legally proscribed discrimination and protected groups.

    From wikipedia: "A protected group is a group of people qualified for special protection by a law, policy, or similar authority. In the United States, the term is frequently used in connection with employees and employment.

    U.S. federal law protects employees from discrimination or harassment based on sex, race, age, disability, color, creed, national origin, religion, or sexual orientation. Many state laws also give certain protected groups special protection against harassment and discrimination, as do many employer policies."

    A group becomes "protected" for several reasons -- they constitute a minority or disadvantaged underclass of some sort, they have historically been discriminated against by the majority, and so on. Section 5 of the 14th Amendment gives the government the Constitutional right to protect such groups against the tyranny of the majority.

    Your hypothetical customers -- a Family Symposium, smokers, the KKK -- are not members of protected groups. Therefore, anti-discrimination laws do not apply to them.

    Nonetheless, in a *moral* sense you present an interesting thought puzzle.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 12:17 p.m.

    Re: "Your hypothetical customers -- a Family Symposium, smokers, the KKK -- are not members of protected groups. Therefore, anti-discrimination laws do not apply to them."

    In other words, LGBT activists are pushing this deranged interpretation of their brave new world of gender-indentity discrimination law, such that it punishes ONLY religious people, and benefits ONLY the LGBT community.

    Hmmmmm.

    Well, at least you're honest enough to admit the direction you're heading in this war against religion.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 12:35 p.m.

    It's nice to see the DesNews taking a more nuanced approach in their ongoing reporting and editorializing on religious liberty conflicts. Drawing on other faith traditions (like Quaker conscientious objectors) shows an evolving awareness of the breadth of the issue and is a refreshing change from their previous litany of Hobby Lobby and wedding cake bakers. Invoking conscientious objectors also works as a clever rhetorical move by hinting at a moral equivalence of homophobes with a cause dear to liberals.

    However, completely ignored once again by the DesNews are the many religious faiths that embrace same sex marriage who are prohibited by the government from the free exercise of their religious beliefs. Until this paper stands with those churches and fights as vigorously for their right to perform gay marriages in states where prohibited as it does for other faiths not to where allowed, then all of its talk of religious liberty is only self-serving posturing. If the paper genuinely stands for religious liberty and freedom of conscience for all, it must stand with and defend all faiths and their practices, no matter how repugnant or unpopular they may be.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Nov. 18, 2013 1:33 p.m.

    Mike Richards
    South Jordan, Utah

    Marriage is a sacred religious covenant. Government has no authority to define marriage. That definition belongs to God and to God alone.

    8:30 a.m. Nov. 17, 2013

    ========

    If that be the case - Mike -
    Then Government should have nothing to do with marriage at all.

    No "legally and lawfully wedded".

    And if 2 gay want to get married,
    They can go down to any little white church along the Vegas strip and call it good?

  • airnaut Everett, 00
    Nov. 18, 2013 1:37 p.m.

    Lagomorph
    Salt Lake City, UT

    Agreed.

    Blue Ribbon Winner - Best arguement.

  • ConservativeCommonTater West Valley City, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 2:56 p.m.

    Religions have been trying to force their individual beliefs upon Americans since the Reagan years.

    When a "religion" is engaged in commerce, it should be treated as any other business and not be privy to the protections of "religion."

    Our Constitution was set up as the standard for ALL Americans and that means the "equal opportunity" clause should not be challenged by religious dogma.

    Just as religious people have the freedom to practice their religious beliefs, as granted by the Constitution, the people not of their belief system have the right to "Freedom from religion" in our government.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 3:19 p.m.

    I've been thinking about this one a lot lately, because I encounter a lot of returned Mexican Mennonites from time to time, everywhere from walmart in Taber, Alberta to walmart in Phoenix. Aside from the fact that many of them seem to be mixed up in drug cartels, the reason they left for mexico in the first place was to avoid service in the second world war, for 'religious' reasons. I do not look upon this act with favour, nor upon their return from their 65 year mexican vacation. It may be something of a generalisation, but to me their religious objections may have been real at the time but now just seem like an excuse of convenience and avoidance.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 4:55 p.m.

    To those who think religion should be only allowed behind closed doors, look in the mirror. Do you keep your anti-religion behind your closed doors or do you spit it in other people's faces? (hint: it is the latter)

    With regard to homosexuality, do you keep it in the bedroom? Hardly! You parade your sexuality around, literally, while demanding that religious people hide any semblance of who they are from your sight.

    I realize it is a Biblical word, but oh ye intolerant hypocrites!

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 6:51 p.m.

    ToBadgerbadger 4:55 p.m. Nov. 18, 2013

    I am a "straight" woman in her 60s. I have been married for over 44 years to an equally "straight" man who is now in his 70s. And guess what -- we parade our sexuality around all the time -- when we hold hands in public, or sit walk with our arms around each other, or lovingly (not get-a-room) kiss in public, or when we have our family's picture on our desks at work. We parade around the fact that we enjoy sexual intimacy with each other when we talk about the fact that we have two children and have had four pregnancies that self-terminated in the second trimester. We do not keep, or hide, our sexuality in our bedroom. And NOBODY has ever demanded that we hide our sexuality from the world.

    I see no reason to deny people who happen to be homosexual the right to do in public the things that are totally acceptable when people who happen to be heterosexual do them in public.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Nov. 18, 2013 9:59 p.m.

    Counter Intelligence - you are in great form on this thread!!! Too bad your allotted posts are gone. I would have loved to see more, although I am glad to see you abide by the posting rules, unlike many other posters here.

    Furry1993 - Thank you for taking the bait. Yes people do exhibit who they are in public, just by being who they are. This article is about an effort by some to require those who are religious to pretend they are not when in public. My religious convictions shape who I am and are exhibited in the way I live every day, including the time I am at work/in public. I would never hold a job that required me to check my religion at the door. To be asked to mask the religion in my life is a violation of my constitutional right to freely exercise my religion.

    But I do wonder, have you ever marched in a heterosexual pride parade or participated in a heterosexual pride festival to get the press to promote heterosexuality?

    I haven't either.

  • Furry1993 Ogden, UT
    Nov. 19, 2013 5:38 a.m.

    Badger -- I have never been told I lack worth because I'm straight or that I was deserving of discrimination because I'm straight; therefore I see no nee for affirming my worth through a pride festival, and the press already promotes heterosexuality. Your comment is without value or purpose.

    Nobody is being asked to "leave their religion at the door" -- they are always free to believe what they want and worship as they choose (and hold whatever animus they choose for whatever reason). The only thing they are being asked to do is treat everyone equally in the public marketplace. They are being asked to render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's -- in other words, to refrain from unreasonable discrimination. The arguments you try to make are those used against mixed race marriages, which were negated and held unconstitutional by the US Supreme Court in Loving v Virginia. As a person of faith, I have no problem treating ALL by brothers and sisters in a manner free of prejudice. It's said that others don't do the same.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Nov. 19, 2013 6:57 a.m.

    Badgerbadger says:

    "My religious convictions shape who I am and are exhibited in the way I live every day, including the time I am at work/in public. I would never hold a job that required me to check my religion at the door. To be asked to mask the religion in my life is a violation of my constitutional right to freely exercise my religion."

    And yet you tell homosexuals to check their "sexuality" at the door when they leave their homes (violating our constitutional rights as well) so that they don't offend you when you see us holding hands or whatever it is that offends you about us.
    Heterosexual parades? Have you ever witnessed Mardi Gras?

    To use your own words: "O ye intolerant hypocrite".

  • Contrariusester mid-state, TN
    Nov. 19, 2013 7:26 a.m.

    @procuradorfiscal --

    "In other words, LGBT activists are pushing this deranged interpretation of their brave new world of gender-indentity discrimination law, such that it punishes ONLY religious people, and benefits ONLY the LGBT community."

    Nooooooooooope. I dunno how you got there, but you're completely wrong.

    In fact, as I quoted above, "U.S. federal law protects employees from discrimination or harassment based on sex, race, age, disability, color, creed, national origin, religion, or sexual orientation. " Those protected groups INCLUDE religions, in case you missed it the first time.

    The KKK is not a religion -- it's a political group.

    The Family Conference is also not a religion -- it's a political group.

    Smokers are not a religion -- they're addicts.

    And please remember that many many religious people, including quite a few Christian denominations, SUPPORT gay marriage.

    Now, if you asked me whether a gay business owner should serve a Southern Baptist customer -- well, sure, of course he should.

    But that's not what you asked.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 19, 2013 6:12 p.m.

    Badgerbadger: "But I do wonder, have you ever marched in a heterosexual pride parade or participated in a heterosexual pride festival to get the press to promote heterosexuality?"

    No. Because heterosexuality is the dominant paradigm and enjoys the privilege of hegemony. It has no need to promote pride in itself because it owns pride. EVERY day is straight pride day. It is promoted in every movie, sitcom, billboard, Cialis ad, school, and church. Everywhere you look is the message "straight is good." Straight needs no festival.

    On the other hand...

    Have you ever not put a family photo in your workplace because it would betray your heterosexuality?

    Have you ever removed your wedding ring because people would know you were straight?

    Have you ever not taken your spouse to a social function because he/she is of the opposite sex?

    I suspect you have never done these things because there is no penalty for being straight in today's society. You never have to fear losing a job or housing or friends or getting beaten because you accidentally gave a clue about your sexual orientation.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Nov. 19, 2013 11:27 p.m.

    Ranch, you missed the part about furry taking the bait.

    You want all H(omosexual)TB people to come out of the closet so you have room to stuff all the religious people into that closet. If being in the closet was so bad, why would you want to stuff your fellow man into it? That's hypocritical part. This is an article about religious freedom, how it has been protected and how it is threatened with destruction.

    BTW children hold hands. It isn't sexual or objectionable. Eating each other's face (and many other things that would get my post denied), that is sexual, and repulsive in public no matter what kind of couple it is, (no prejudice, no hypocrisy, just equality). Wouldn't be caught dead at Mardi-gras. I don't worship any kind of sexuality, or attend any type of festivals/shows celebrating it.

    People can get arrested for having sex in public. Sex is a private matter.
    People cannot be arrested for praying in public. The Constitution protects the free exercise of religion, and free speech. 226 years have shaped the laws and they are as they should be.

  • Coontrariusester mid-state, TN
    Nov. 20, 2013 7:17 a.m.

    @Lagomorph --

    "Have you ever not put a family photo in your workplace because it would betray your heterosexuality?

    Have you ever removed your wedding ring because people would know you were straight?

    Have you ever not taken your spouse to a social function because he/she is of the opposite sex?

    I suspect you have never done these things because there is no penalty for being straight in today's society. You never have to fear losing a job or housing or friends or getting beaten because you accidentally gave a clue about your sexual orientation."

    Wonderful post!

    When straight people actually have to refrain from holding their spouse's hand in public for fear of getting straight-bashed, THEN they may have a point about straight pride.

    When straight people can actually get fired for merely saying "I'm going to the movies with my wife", THEN they may have a point about straight pride.

    Until then, they have no point at all.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Nov. 20, 2013 8:32 a.m.

    mcbillay - No employer has ever dictated what health care their employees can have. NEVER!

    Go buy any health care you want. Your employer won't stand in your way.

    I want to be your employee, and then demand that YOU BUY ME the car I want!

  • Jamescmeyer Midwest City, USA, OK
    Nov. 20, 2013 4:46 p.m.

    When a rainbow flag is flown in a military installation while a chaplain's tent can't put a cross on the door, it's difficult to convince any reasonable person that freedom of religion isn't under attack.

    When socialized medical reform takes taxpayer and business owner dollars to pay for immoral things and same-sex couples are leveraging ultimatums against Catholic orphanages, it's difficult to convince any reasonable person that freedom of religion isn't under attack.

  • RFLASH Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 6:45 a.m.

    It is amazing how so many people start talking about their religious freedom and it would never even occur to them that the same religious freedom belongs to us! I didn't stop believing in God because I am gay and my belief in God is not any less important because others don't seem to think it exists! God is not something that is owned. He is the God of us all and we all have the right to worship him including me, the gay man! Why do people have such a need to degrade others. We have a right to stand up and we don't have to accept the degrading role that so called good Christians seem to throw on us! we are good people and we come from good families and is pathetic to watch others insist that we are anything less than they are!