Sharee is trying to be fair to all parties concerned by stating that "there needs to be a middle-ground"...but who is to decide where the middle-ground is? Each side wants to occupy the whole ground. On one hand, the LGBT community does not care as much about marriage - statistics prove it - as they do about erasing any kind of difference between males and females -- they already tried that with ERA more than 30 years ago. On the other hand, Christians and members of other faiths, and many agnostics, believe in the sanctity of marriage as it has always been defined throughout the history of mankind, that is, the union of a man and a woman with the purpose of having children and raising them together. There cannot be such a thing as a middle-ground in this, only mutual respect that keeps each party from resorting to forceful/scare tactics against the other one in order to gain full control of the whole territory.
Interesting stance... But does it make sense? How about the person behind the register at your local supermarket that believes that the bag of coffee I want to buy will harm me and so s/he refuses to sell it to me? Isn't that the same as the one refusing to perform the marriage for two people that have chosen to live together because they love each other? The gay couple getting married, that is THEIR decision. The religious person has no right to force others to live by their religious convictions. That is where this is wrong. How does it infringe on the religious person who eats their cake? Can you require a guest list by all customers to make sure no gays will partake of sold cakes? Why should a photographer be able to refuse to take pictures of a gay couple just because the photographer happens to not approve? How does that harm the photographer? Can another photographer refuse to take photos of the LDS couple because there is no access to actual wedding in the Temple? And he objects to family members having to sit outside because they were too young to enter and witness the wedding? Does that sound fair? How about the LDS church lives by their own doctrine..: 11 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.
Thanks you for your perspective. There is a difference between simply selling goods and creating something that intimately involves the seller in the event, and rely on an additional element of special skill and engagement by the seller. When someone is looking for people to decorate their wedding reception, to take photographs, to provide music and entertainment, they are asking for the seller to give their best effort. If the buyer is asking for creative services that conflict with the conscience of the seller, and the seller explains that to the buyer and the buyer persists, the buyer does not really care about getting the best work of the seller. If a seller does not want to be associated in the mind of the public with an event, being forced to be there means they will not do their best work. Does an honest buyer really want to pay someone to do second class work, under duress? Only a sadist who enjoys making others suffer would want to coerce another person into such a condition of servitude. Why should government aid and abet sadism?Anyone who declines to provide personal creative services is already being punished by losing the customer's business, not only on that occasion but also future ones. How is the buyer hurt? He may feel offended that the seller does not endorse his chosen lifestyle, but that should not be a surprise to any adult who recognizes the great diversity of human viewpoints about what is moral and virtuous. Unless the seller has organized some kind of boycott against the buyer (which would be a different case), the buyer is free to purchase the services from someone else who will be more enthusiastic about it, and do a better job. The buyer thus has not suffered in any material way, while the seller has lost business, perhaps a lot of income in the long run. If the seller is willing to pay that price for what he or she believes is his integrity, why not leave it at that as a just and fair outcome?We have a well established precedent in America, which came into being when compulsory military service existed, to allow men who held a sincere belief in pacifism due to their religious beliefs, such as Quakers and Seventh-Day Adventists, to be excused from military service that would require them to harm other humans. In some cases, alternate means have been provided for them to support our nation's defense, such as work providing medical care to the wounded. The harm to our nation's defense from their declining to serve as fighters has long been regarded as more acceptable than the alternative, of coercing people to fight, who are unlikely to be very effective warriors in any case.If American society can afford to have conscientious objectors to dealing violence, which created increased risk for our nation, can we not afford respect for conscientious objectors to participation in same sex wedding receptions? They buyers can get alternate suppliers who will do a more enthusiastic and probably better job at no greater cost, while the sellers who decline are immediately punished by losing business and long term customers. No one who wants to hold a same sex wedding will be prevented or harmed, and they will be able to say that they respected the conscience of their neighbor, who would have done a lousy job anyway.
I do not believe in gay marriage. Neither do I believe in Judaism or Buddhism. But if I were a florist or a baker, I would not refuse to supply flowers or a wedding cake for a gay marriage any more than I would refuse to supply them for a Jewish or Buddhist marriage. That's taking one's beliefs a little too far. However, I do believe that physicians have the right to perform abortions, that Christian lawyers in Canada have a right to employment, that judges in California should not be barred from being affiliated with the Boy Scouts and that no one should not be bullied out of their jobs because they do not support the gay agenda. There needs to be a middle ground.
The author feels that forcing a landlord or creative/artistic business (bakery, photographer, etc…) to do business with someone is wrong, if by doing said transaction the vendor’s religious beliefs would be offended. This is a very dangerous position to take.There are White Supremist churches whose members could be able to refuse to rent a house or bake a wedding cake for Blacks. Evangelicals could refuse the same to LDS due to their animus to LDS people/beliefs. Muslims could refuse to rent to a single woman and could require the rental agreement be signed by her father or brother who is in charge of her. There are other bakers and landlords who may be willing to do business so the individuals discriminated against aren’t really harmed…per the author’s logic.I am sure that the Deseret News would print any above listed discrimination against LDS on the front page and cries of “persecution” would ring through the Salt Lake valley. I guess the author feels that discrimination is AOK…as long as you are the one doing the discriminating and not on the other end.
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