Gay Marriage

North Carolina Legislature Bypasses Governor, Allows Clerks to Refuse to Perform Gay Marriages

Courts would be required to make sure somebody will pick up the slack.

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It'll be a cold day in hell before I agree to recognize that pinstriped jacket as a good choice.
Credit: EnriqueMéndez / photo on flickr

County workers in North Carolina have been granted permission to refuse to not just perform gay marriages, but to refuse to actually issue marriage licenses to gay couples under a new law passed despite a veto from the state's governor.

What the law actually says is that magistrates can recuse themselves from performing or handing out marriage licenses to anybody on the basis of a "sincerely held religious objection." The law itself does not mention gay marriages, but that's obviously what it's for.

But the law wouldn't let magistrates or registers of deeds just pick and choose. The individual would have to recuse himself or herself from performing all marriages or issuing all licenses for at least six months. It would be up to the courts to make sure that each jurisdiction has somebody who will be willing to preform marriages and issue licenses for "at least a total of 10 hours per week, over at least three business days per week."

These government clerks who recuse themselves cannot be disciplined or charged with failing to discharge duties under the law. Gov. Pat McCrory, a Republican who opposes same-sex marriage recognition, nevertheless vetoed the bill, arguing "no public official who voluntarily swears to support and defend the Constitution and to discharge all duties of their office should be exempt from upholding that oath." Today, the state's House joined its Senate in overturning the veto.

There are obviously concerns that this recusal will cause delays for any couple trying to get married, not just same-sex couples. My concern is that the solution to such a problem would be to hire even more paid government employees at taxpayer expense in order to accommodate everybody. I am somewhat sympathetic to anybody who doesn't want to be forced to perform a marriage, even a civic one, for religious reasons. I am completely unsympathetic toward anybody who wants to use religion as reason to avoid handing out marriage licenses, which are government acknowledgments of contractual relationships and whatever benefits and obligations that may follow and have nothing to do with God.

The Supreme Court will be ruling any day now whether the 14th Amendment obligates states to recognize same-sex marriages. States are grappling with how to deal with an outcome in favor of the gay couples, which seems more and more likely. A new poll has 65 percent of Americans believing the Supreme Court will toss out bans on gay marriage recognition.

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  1. This law is a disgrace.

  2. These government clerks who recuse themselves cannot be disciplined or charged with failing to discharge duties under the law.

    But, I assume, still get paid even though they’re not doing the job they were hired to do? Good veto, stupid override.

    1. Yeah, while I suppose at least hopefully it won’t lead to anyone not getting a license, sounds like a pretty sweet deal for people who get hired and then refuse to work.

      1. No, it means they focus instead on their main job, which in the case of magistrates is to carry out various types of judicial business, and in the case of assistant registrars of deeds, managing vital records (real estate, deaths, etc. as well as marriages).

        It would be like a company having an employee deal solely with IT issues, without having to interact with customers. Hardly the same as not working.

        1. Sure, and if it can be accommodated without problem because there’s enough other work for them to do then that seems a reasonable thing to do and best practice. Depending on the county, though (and there are 100 counties in North Carolina), there may not be enough workload that it makes sense.

        2. It’s one thing where it’s Mecklenburg County (home of Charlotte) with over a million people.

          The counties with fewer than 10,000 people, like Tyrrell or Hyde, that’s a different issue. And what if every assistant or deputy registrar of deeds wants an exemption, which again could be pretty common in places like Tyrrell, where they only have a single assistant at most.

          1. We were fortunate here in Hyde because our two anti-gay magistrates resigned before this ridiculous bill was introduced.

            1. The new law will let them apply to get their jobs back at the next available vacancy.

              1. Gee, great.

        3. To use your company analogy, it’s one thing to have a large company have a few employees in the back. It’s completely different if you’re a mom and pop retailer with exactly one employee outside the family, if that employee insists he can’t interact with customer.

          1. Like the article says, the law provides for sending in extra magistrates if the magistrates in a particular county don’t want to do marriages, and indeed there have to be people available 10 hrs per week.

            1. “Yeah, you’ll have to come back later–the non-bigot guy only comes in for half days on Thursdays and Fridays”

      2. So they differ from blue flu cops… how?

        Refusing to work is one of the most valuable things a government worker can do.

        Especially if they happen to be a Assistant U.S. attorney. Actually, those people should specifically tour the North Dakota region with all the extra time they would gain not working.

        1. I don’t think that blue flu or what the Baltimore cops are currently doing is best, either. Sorry, more of a night watchman state than an anarchist.

          1. But even if I were, I’d rather fire the cops than keep them on the payroll.

    1. Asking government employees to do their job is usually a bad idea.

      1. Agreed..

  3. Butt sex. Check!

    Weed?

    Mexicans?

    1. There was a Richman and a Chapman article today too.

  4. I am completely unsympathetic toward anybody who wants to use religion as reason to avoid handing out marriage licenses, which are government acknowledgments of contractual relationships and whatever benefits and obligations that may follow and have nothing to do with God.

    Because nothing says “Libertarian” like “lets get the government more involved in personal relationships”. And of course government marriage is bad, which of course means we must work to make sure it applies to more not fewer couples.

    1. Does every marriage thread have to have a disclaimer?

      Should the government be involved in marriage? No.
      To the extent government is involved in marriage, should it be allowed to discriminate? No.

      That’s really fucking simple, Red Tony. Something about gay marriage threads makes your Red Tony side shine.

      1. If it shouldn’t be involved in marriage, why then should you want it to be involved in more relationships not less? Should the government regulate prescription drugs? No. The solution to that problem is not to expand the number of drugs that need a presrcition is it? If not, then why is the answer to government marriage to expand the number of relationships it controls?

        Ending government marriage makes people more free. So why do you want to make gay couples less free in the name of equality? If they were throwing straight couples in jail, would you want to throw gays there too just to be equal?

        1. D+ work, John.

          1. Or in other words true and something you have no answer for but just don’t like it. God damn it you are going to social signal and nothing anyone says is going to stop you.

            1. You’re argument is of course correct, John. And I agree with you.

              However, in the real world when two gay dudes who are regulars at my local bar get married, I buy them a round of drinks and pretend the government’s piece of paper is the most awesome thing ever. It may be social signalling, but it makes life a little easier.

              1. I have plenty of gay friends and have attended gay weddings. I couldn’t give a shit less about who gets married to whom. My only problem is when the government stomps on anyone who dissents. And that is what is going on with gay marriage.

        2. Ending government marriage makes people more free.

          True, but only if the special “rights” conferred by the government are freely available to all persons via private contract. Many, such as death bed visitation, are not.

          So why do you want to make gay couples less free in the name of equality?

          Because said “rights” are not freely available to persons not recognized by the state as being qualified for said “rights” (i.e., “married”). Damn you are thick.

          1. True, but only if the special “rights” conferred by the government are freely available to all persons via private contract.

            Not true at all. What makes you more free is that you are no longer subject to the government mandated terms of your relationship. You no longer have to split your property in two if you don’t want to. You no longer have a judge tell you you are married via common law marriage. You no longer automatically give your spouse a share of your retirement. You are free to negotiate what you like. That is the freedom angle.

            But that angle has been totally lost. Now the argument against government marriage is framed as a mean spirited “give up your shit you welfare queen” language.

            But hey, don’t worry about freedom, just worry about being fashionable and your Proggy friends liking you.

            1. John, does it change your opinion of this issue at all that you can only contract a common law marriage in nine states at this point?

              1. No. The problem with common law marriage is that it allows a judge to declare a couple married even though one of the parties doesn’t agree they are and there was never any kind of contract or ceremony. This means that common law marriage allows the government to enforce marriage terms even on couples who never get a license. It makes the government system mandatory.

                And there is also palimony, which also allows judges to effectively declare a couple married and enforce terms on the dissolution even though they were never married. Before gay marriage, gays were in no danger of that happening. They were totally outside the system. Gay marriage puts them inside the system and makes them much less free.

                1. That’s what I’m saying, though, John. Common law marriage is dying out in the US. Most states no longer allow it to be contracted. If the government system is not mandatory for anyone anymore, do you still have the same objections?

                  1. It is not dying out Nikki. They don’t allow you to contract it because they want people who are married to get a licenses. But courts can and still do declare couples married over the objection of one of the parties. So you can’t get married and duck out of the system.

                    1. Can you give an example of this? If a state doesn’t recognize common law marriage, how can they suddenly declare it? Palimony requires some kind of contract, written or oral. You mention the Lee Marvin case, but palimony was not awarded. Because there was no contract, and CA had abolished common law marriage.

            2. This continues to be a lame argument. If getting legally hitched is beneficial a couple can choose to do it and if it isn’t beneficial they can choose not to. Nobody is forcing couples (gay or straight) to get married. You’re literally arguing that gay people having fewer choices for how they can arrange their personal and financial lives is more freedom.

              war is peace
              freedom is slavery
              ignorance is strength

              1. Yeah, apparently I didn’t notice when I got automatically married.

                1. Apparently, I wasn’t automatically invited to the gay wedding.

              2. If getting legally hitched is beneficial a couple can choose to do it and if it isn’t beneficial they can choose not to.

                No they can’t Jessee. As soon as one of the parties doesn’t like the dissolution of the marriage, they will go to court and a judge will via common law marriage or palimony declare them married and enforce terms on the relationship.

                So it is not a lame argument. Moreover, if it were, which it is not, there wouldn’t be an argument against government marriage at all. If you could just opt out, which of course you can’t, then government marriage wouldn’t be an imposition on freedom and Libertarians would not have a reason to object to it. Of course it is and Libertarians have, until gays became sacred, always known that.

                1. palimony

                  Wait, you’re using palimony as your argument against gay marriage? It’s a case of the courts arbitrarily dicking someone over in a scenario where they hadn’t opted to set the terms of their relationship before-hand. Most of the notable palimony cases are LESBIANS and pre-date gay marriage as a hot topic by at least a decade.

                  1. No Jesse, the first case of palimony was the Lee Marvin case. Go look it up. Palimony is a direct out growth of government marriage. The doctrine arose because wealthy men were not marrying their wives in order to avoid the draconian aspects of community property. So courts stepped in and said “no you can’t avoid the terms of government marriage that easy”. To the extent that it has been applied in cases involving gay couples, it has been applied because courts desire to bring gay couples under the umbrella of government marriage. Before the movement for government recognized gay marriage, courts didn’t apply the doctrine to gay couples.

                    You are less free by this Jessee and you know it. You just don’t care because you want to ability to force other people to recognize your relationships.

                    1. First of all, fuck off, John. Your interpretation of my motivations is a load of horse shit. I never said lesbians were the first so your argument that I’m wrong there is also horse shit.

                      If you can’t see that the best avoidance for palimony would be for income disparate couples to get married with a well drafted prenup then you’re dumb. And to claim that not having gay marriage would prevent gay couples from being caught up in palimony cases is even dumber.

                    2. If you can’t see that the best avoidance for palimony would be for income disparate couples to get married with a well drafted prenup then you’re dumb.

                      Yeah Jesse, you can avoid the problems by just getting married and going along with it. That is a real pro freedom argument. How about we leave gays outside the system so they don’t have the problem to begin with? And of course drafting a detailed prenup is just no big deal but below you are telling me how getting a medical POA is just so offensive.

                      You are dumb Jesse. You don’t know anyting about family law and got caught with your ass showing and now are whining about it.

                      And you can fuck off. Just because you are gay doesn’t mean you can’t be expected to think and have principles. I know plenty of gay people who see this for what it is and don’t support gay marriage. What is your excuse for not doing the same?

                      Sorry but you just want your fucking pony and want to be able to step on people you don’t like. And if that truth offends your delicate sensibilities, too fucking bad.

                    3. John, when are you getting divorced?

                    4. Guys, I’m starting a fund. We all need to pitch in so we can rent a Bobcat and get all of that sand out of John’s vagina.

                    5. Sweet Jesus. You’re a disingenuous ass.

                      You’re the one who is wrong about family law. As multiple people have noted common-law marriage is almost extinct in the US, and you haven’t directly answered that. You made up something about me being offended about POAs, which isn’t even remotely what I’m talking about there. Bringing palimony into the discussion directly invalidated your position, and you’re too retarded to realize that saying I’m just looking to trample on other people’s freedoms is the same as me arguing that you’re a crazy christian who hates gays. It requires you to completely ignore my position and argue with a cartoon version of me.

                      You can seriously go fuck yourself, John, you’re an insufferable cunt.

            3. How the fuck are gay people made less free by allowing marriage equality? They’re not being forced to marry.

          2. “death bed visitation”

            What does the government have to do with this?

            1. It’s come up a few times, but the most notable case was when a hospital in FL denied a lesbian the right to visit her spouse even after the appropriate paperwork was sent over from their home state including durable medical power of attorney and the woman died alone because the hospital didn’t recognize her as a spouse, while the wife sat in the waiting room freaking out

              There was specific executive action that any hospitals taking federal money had to respect power of attorney paperwork regardless of the composition of the couples about a year after this all went down.

              1. Then the solution to that is laws that say hospitals have to recognize medical powers of attorney. Would it have been any better if the case had involved an unmarried straight couple?

                Sorry, those cases do nothing to justify gay marriage.e They just mean we should change the law and make hospitals recognize POAs.

                1. It’s come up a few times, but the most notable case was when a hospital in FL denied a lesbian the right to visit her spouse

                  The case that was dismissed?

                  [sic]A *priest* escorted Ms. Langbehn into the trauma area, where Ms. Pond lay alone. The priest administered last rites, with Ms. Langbehn present. Ms. Langbehn was escorted out of the trauma area at 6:55 p.m., once the last rites had been administered.

                  Not to say that the hospital is/was fully compliant to the best of their abilities, but the case (like most of them) is far more nuanced than the picture you painted. The hospital in question (like most all of them) already had a policy against discrimination *and* in favor of recognizing power(s) of attorney. It could *easily* be argued that a social (justice) worker provided a “disadvantaged” woman an “I’m a victim!” card in a time of grief and the social justice system went to work from there (a la Henry Louis Gates, George Zimmerman, and a laundry list of modern ‘Civil Rights’ cases). Even the Wikipedia entry quotes the conditional apology in the Order to Dismiss as though the judge were indicting the hospital.

                  But hey, if you want social justice done and important legislation to pass, gotta do it on the backs of innocent dead people, right?

                  1. Your quote misrepresents why the complaint was dismissed and ignores that the court felt she was not kept apprised of her partners status or was allowed to see her even with the appropriate paperwork filed…for 8 hours. I’m sure if you spent 8 hours kept largely in the dark about your partner’s well being during a critical medical emergency you would just shrug it off.

                    But hey, it’s easy to call her an SJW and just roll with it because she’s on the other team, right?

                    1. Jesse, I called the social worker at the hospital a SJW.

                      Allow me to more accurately represent the court’s decision;

                      [sic]that conclusory allegation is contradicted by more specific allegations in the amended complaint. For example, as noted earlier,
                      at 5:20 p.m. doctors spoke to Ms. Langbehn about the need for a brain monitor, and she agreed to
                      the placement of such a monitor. And at around 6:10 p.m. doctors consulted with Ms. Langbehn
                      about Ms. Pond’s condition and surgical options. During a speaker phone conversation between the
                      doctors, Ms. Langbehn, and Ms. Pond’s parents, the doctors learned out that Ms. Pond’s condition
                      had deteriorated and that surgery was not advisable. At that time, Ms. Langbehn, apparently
                      recognizing that Ms. Pond would not recover, told the doctors that Ms. Pond was an organ donor.
                      In short, the more specific factual allegations in the amended complaint, which govern over more
                      general ones, demonstrate beyond any doubt that Ms. Langbehn was not denied the right to make any
                      medical decisions on behalf of Ms. Pond. Count VI is therefore DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE as to all defendants.
                      IV. C ONCLUSION
                      The defendants’ motion to dismiss is GRANTED . Counts I-IV are DISMISSED WITH PREJUDICE
                      as to the individual defendants, and are DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE as to the Public Health Trust.
                      Counts V-VIII are DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE as to all defendants.

                    2. So, does the story end there? Not according to Lambda Legal;

                      -September 2009 Court dismisses the suit. Lambda Legal has until October 16 to consider all legal options.
                      -April 2010 Jackson Memorial Hospital announces improved policies that are more responsive to the needs of the LGBT community but do not provide as much protection as may be needed in critical situations. Lambda Legal urges Jackson Memorial Hospital to enact a full grievance procedure and also to issue an apology to the Langbehn-Pond family.
                      -April 2010 President Obama issues a memo directing the Secretary of Health and Human Services to take steps to address hospital visitation and other health care issues affecting LGBT families. The President calls Langbehn from Air Force One to inform her of the memo and to express his sympathies for the tragic loss of her partner Lisa Pond and the treatment she suffered.

                      So, libertarian right up until it comes to supporting gay people against prejudices that may or may not have happened and, even if they did, weren’t/aren’t illegal. Then you’re all for phone and pen, right? Principals, not principles, eh?

          3. I found this on Wikipedia:

            While a number of U.S. states recognize either same-sex marriage, or domestic partnerships with the same legal incidents, as marriage, no U.S. state except Iowa and Rhode Island, where the law is untested, currently recognizes same sex common-law marriages.

            So for 48 states, and possibly the other two as well because the law has never been tested there, this idea that the courts will declare same-sex couples married when they never considered themselves married appears to be complete hogwash.

            1. Gay marriage is not a constitutional right yet. So the states can do whatever they want. When and if it becomes a right and must be treated just like straight marriage, then common law marriage will be applied to gay couples just like straight ones.

            2. Yeah. Common law marriage also only exists at all in 9 states, so the idea that straight people could be coopted into accidental marriage like this is also mostly hogwash. And palimony awards require a written or oral contract.

              1. Nikki,

                You are misunderstanding the doctrine of common law marriage. Just because the state says you can’t contract for it does not mean an aggrieved party cannot go to court and claim the doctrine and get a judge to declare them married. It is two separate uses of the doctrine. It is not hogwash. You can’t just opt out of being married once the government recognized your relationship.

        3. To use an argument I’ve seen from you: isn’t it their right to get a marriage license, even if it means restricting their liberty? Who are you to tell a gay couple that they can’t get a marriage license if that’s what they want? Blah, blah, blah. Insert righteous indignation where appropriate.

          1. o use an argument I’ve seen from you: isn’t it their right to get a marriage license, even if it means restricting their liberty?

            No because them doing so reduces other people’s liberty because other people can no longer refuse to recognize their marriage. There are two coercive aspects to government marriage. First the government coerces the couple dictating the terms of their relationship. In return, the couple gets the benefit of being able to force other people to recognize their relationship. So it is not just their liberty that is infringed upon.

            Libertarians have been making these arguments for decades. They just forget them when gays were declared sacred.

          2. Also, MJ, because of palimony and common law marriage, they don’t get to choose. Courts will declare them married even if they never actually got married. Once you put them under the yoke of government marriage, they no longer have the option of opting out.

            1. Their “right” to marriage stops at the point that I have to pay for it. Not having seen an exhaustive list of rights it seems like the majority involve government bennies, e.g SS spousal benefits or compelled commerce. How does that go again, “fuck off, slaver?”

              1. The bargain is, you get to tell other people they have to recognize your marriage and get things like immigration and spousal SS benefits and such and in return the government determines the terms of your relationship should you ever divorce.

        4. “Ending government marriage makes people more free. So why do you want to make gay couples less free in the name of equality? If they were throwing straight couples in jail, would you want to throw gays there too just to be equal?”

          John, let me spell this out for you: The state has unilaterally determined that only people who are married are given certain rights such as death bed visitation. It would be better if the state made no such law and people were allowed to enter into contractual agreements regarding things of that nature, but since the state has interjected itself and decried that only certain people have such rights, the state should not then be allowed to discriminate between citizens.

          1. The state has unilaterally determined that only people who are married are given certain rights such as death bed visitation.

            So rather than just amend those laws to make any person have that rightr, your solution to create gay marriage making gay couples less free? Yeah, that makes sense.

            And BTW the death bed visitation issue is a fucking myth based on very few anecdotes. Moreover, to the extent that one has to be married, unmarried straight couples are just as harmed. So why not change those laws and help everyone?

            Irish, this is obviously an emotional issue for you. You need to get over your emotions and stop pretending.

            1. Irish, this is obviously an emotional issue for you. You need to get over your emotions and stop pretending.

              First, I… But then I serious’d.

              Was it hard to say that with a straight face, John?

              1. I am having a hard time keeping a straight face because you keep saying comical shit like “the other spouse automatically gets custody” and “Libertarians never object to government marriage except in the context of gay marriage”. That is some comically stupid shit.

                1. I don’t keep saying anything.

                  This is the only thing I’ve said the entire thread.

                  Do we all look the same to you? Do you have a thousand-yard stare from arguing so passionately with…uhm… everyone?

    2. I think that there’s a fair argument that if you’re going to have something governmental, it should be administered without prejudice.

      But even aside from that, this law supposedly won’t prevent anyone from getting a marriage license. It’s about letting someone completely avoid their work. When employee desires can be accommodated without problem that’s one thing (and employers on a personal level should strive to do so), but mandating it is another thing altogether.

      1. I think that there’s a fair argument that if you’re going to have something governmental, it should be administered without prejudice.

        Even if that thing is bad? So if say they were throwing Mexicans in jail for drugs but not whites and blacks, you would be okay with extending it to whites in blacks and view that as a good thing, though not as good as stopping throwing Mexicans in jail?

        Either Libertarians no longer see government marriage as a bad thing or they are happy to see gay couples made worse off and less free by being subject to it. Since clearly they have nothing against gay couples, Libertarians have pretty much forfeited any standing to claim government marriage is bad.

        1. Even if that thing is bad?

          No, of course not. Nobody suggests otherwise. Comparing the equitable granting of spousal rights to throwing people in jail is childishly illogical.

          1. No Les, what is childishly illogical is your inability to understand that if government marriage is by its nature a coercive and freedom reducing institution, then expanding it to include more couples is never a good thing.

            The logic is simple. I am sorry if your child like mind can’t comprehend it.

    3. Okay, and what are gay couples today supposed to do while we wait for government to get out of marriage? Do you think it’s fair that government gives the relationship you and your wife have more legal rights and privileges than that of a gay couple in a similar situation?

      1. They are supposed to live as married people and make the terms of their relationships as they see fit via contract. Without gay marriage, they have no worries of common law marriage, community property, having to get a divorce or any of that. They get to do what Libertarians used to claim to want everyone to be able to do, make the terms of their own relationships instead of having the government do so.

        I have a former co-worker who is gay and lives in Texas. He is totally against gay marriage. Why? Because he doesn’t want the government telling him that his partner of like 20 years has a claim on his civil service retirement if they ever break up. With gay marriage, he no longer gets to decide how much of his retirement he shares with his partner. The government tells him.

        That kind of thing is why Libertarians used to object to government marriage. They should be arguing to make sure contracts between gay couples are enforced. Instead they are going for government marriage and screwing people like my friend because God damn it supporting gay marriage is cool.

        1. Without gay marriage, they have no worries of common law marriage, community property, having to get a divorce or any of that.

          Nor do they get the bevy of benefits the government hands out to married couples. D+ Red Tony. We’re tired of this spiel you should have a random freak-out over body armour or something. Shake it up.

          1. Nor do they get the bevy of benefits the government hands out to married couples.

            For sure. And what are those benefits? Using government power to coerce people into recognizing their relationship; So your support of government marriage not only makes gays less free, it also gives gays the power to make other people less free. This is why government marriage is bad and why Libertarians used to object to it.

            Thanks of playing Cytoxic. And your screaming Red Tony is of course sufficient to show that you know you are have lost the argument.

            1. Using government power to coerce people into recognizing their relationship

              They already had that. Try harder Red Tony.

              your screaming Red Tony is of course sufficient to show that you know you are have lost the argument.

              How perfectly pathetic. Perfectly Red Tony.

              1. They already had that.

                Gays most certainly didn’t. That is why they want government marriage you fucking half wit.

                Again, thanks for playing. You don’t always scream red tony. You only do it when you are losing the argument badly, like you are here. It is your move. We all know what it means and it gives you a way of admitting you lost while at least in your mind keeping some of your dignity. So I guess it works.

          2. So you are advocating for an expansion of the welfare state. How libertarian.

            1. No I’m not, not anymore than those arguing against miscegenation laws. Equalizing welfare =/= expanding it

              1. Equalization through expansion is not expansion. Yes, that is impeccable logic.

        2. They are supposed to live as married people and make the terms of their relationships as they see fit via contract.

          Which the judge is now free to ignore because of his religious convictions.

          1. No he wouldn’t be nor should he be. If you there are laws that say courts should not recognize contracts between gay couples, they should be repealed.

      2. Well apparently from the.. reasoning above the gay couples are already more free than the straights so perhaps they should be doing advocacy work and outreach to free heterosexuals from the awful yoke that binds them.

        1. Woodchippers, they are. And indeed, many homosexuals like my friend don’t support gay marriage for that reason. Moreover, gay marriage was initially rejected by the gay community. It was only when they figured out that they could use it as a club to force acceptance that the gay rights activists embraced it.

          And how can you say they are not more free without gay marriage? If they are not, then why the hell do you support ending government marriage?

          1. A few years ago, Penn Jillette said that the only reason he got a government marriage license was to make sure he got custody of his kids in case his wife died.(yes, our family court system is that fucked up) I agreed with that completely, because I’m in the same situation. Then, somehow, government marriage became the most important issue of our lifetime.

            1. Want to hear some fucked up family law story? Earlier today I got a call from a grandmother, who at this point has been caring for her grandson for about 2.5 years, crying that the other grandmother came and took the child and just gave him to some other couple because that grandmother thinks the kid should be adopted by these other people. I call DSS since there is an ongoing case related to these people and the lady who called me has temporary custody. According to DSS they will not do anything because the other grandmother claims the daughter gave her consent, despite the previous order. You might be wondering what the dad says…it’s SC, fuck him.

              1. Jesus. I hope the people who came up with this shit are in a special wood chipper in hell.

        2. free heterosexuals from the awful yoke that binds them.

          Now this is some activism I can get behind.

  5. “Upholding their oath”? baaahahahaha….that guv, what a card!

  6. Sorry, clerks, you got your cushy jobs to perform a service to the people, and do the business of government. Don’t like it? Down to the private sector with you. This isn’t a private company, you’re there to serve the people, some of whom are gay, and some of whom want to get married.

    With this logic, petty clerks could shape government policy with no voter input.

    Imagine if I couldn’t get a carry permit because no clerk in Seattle would issue me one.

  7. “Gov. Pat McCrory, a Republican who opposes same-sex marriage recognition, nevertheless vetoed the bill”

    Then he doesn’t oppose same sex marriage.

    He wants to purge people from public office for holding the same position the governor supposedly holds – the same position the voters of the state upheld at the polls – in order to accommodate the demands of federal judges. Of course, I am aware that federal judges are all-wise and benevolent 99% of the time, but 1% of the time they can make mistakes, and this is a mistake.

    If the governor wants a purge of officeholders who disagree with gay marriage, OK, then he can drop the claim that he “opposes” gay marriage.

    1. “If the governor wants a purge of officeholders who disagree with gay marriage, OK, then he can drop the claim that he “opposes” gay marriage.”

      He’s not supporting a purge of officeholders who ‘disagree’ with gay marriage, he’s supporting a purge of government employees who refuse to do the work for which they were hired. If gay marriage is legal in a state, be it from a public referendum or a judge decision, then employees of that state cannot refuse to do work they are paid to do.

      If I run a business, for example, and I say “you have to bake cakes for anyone who comes in here” and my employee says “hey, I’m not gonna bake cakes for gay people and I’ll pawn that responsibility off on someone else” then firing that employee is not a ‘purge’ of people I ‘disagree’ with, it’s the elimination of an employee who refuses to do his job.

      1. SoCons do love their Persecution Complex.

        1. Because the gay-rights folks managed to convince some lawyer with a 2-digit IQ to proclaim a right to same-sex marriage, we’re supposed to punish the public by depriving them of the services of conscientious public servants who share the public’s views on marriage?

      2. “refuse to do the work for which they were hired”

        I’m afraid that begs the question. The statutes of the state, and the constitution as specifically amended by the voters, says nothing about a duty of assisting gay marriages – quite the contrary.

        “If gay marriage is legal in a state, be it from a public referendum or a judge decision, then employees of that state cannot refuse to do work they are paid to do.”

        Hold on…(a) gay marriage was already legal, there’s no penalty for it, (b) there’s a difference between legalizing gay marriage through legislative process and legalizing it through the whim of some lawyer with a two-digit IQ who is trying to gain brownie points from all the cool people by undoing the results of elections and inventing “rights” nobody knew existed before, and (c) the taxpayers who pay officials’ salaries have *already spoken* on the issue of gay marriage, and they don’t want it recognized – if they don’t think a magistrate is doing his job, the voters/taxpayers can simply elect someone else.

        Federal judges don’t get to concern-troll about the taxpayers after specifically overruling the decisions of the taxpayers.

  8. Alabama may have unintentionally replaced marriage licenses with contracts.

    http://legalinsurrection.com/2…..contracts/

    Hopefully, the wave of the future.

    1. If you really hope that, then why do you want gay couples to be subjected to government marriage? Is it some kind of plan to destroy government marriage like Obamacare destroying private health care?

      1. I’m not sure what you’re asking.

        It appears like AL was being forced via the Supremes into recognizing gay marriage and in an attempt to by pass that the legislature passed a law turning “marriage” into a contractual relationship. Of course, long term, that’s a much better outcome.

        1. If your point is that the government via the court system shouldn’t arbitrate contracts then you’ve lost me.

        2. I wish more spite legislation had hilariously unanticipated but positive outcomes like that.

          1. “What, we have to recognize gay marriage? Well then we won’t have marriage at all! See, no marriage for anyone! All you can have is a binding contract! Huh? Wait. Wut?”

            Friggin hi-larious.

          2. I wish more spite legislation had hilariously unanticipated but positive outcomes like that.

            That’s how I like my libertarianism; not out of any sort of high virtue, mutual recognition, or regular and widespread trust but, infrequent and accidental races to the bottom.

            Just like every other pragmatic libertarian basking the the unending glow of the Libertarian Moment!

      2. “If you really hope that, then why do you want gay couples to be subjected to government marriage? Is it some kind of plan to destroy government marriage like Obamacare destroying private health care?”

        Because under current law there are all sorts of idiotic privileges only granted to married couples, such as a guarantee that the children will go to the other spouse, hospital visitation rights, etc. and although I would prefer total contractual freedom when it comes to marriage terms I don’t believe gay people should be denied benefits given to everyone else.

        I oppose welfare. If the government said ‘we’re only going to give welfare to white people’ I’d oppose that policy even though it would result in fewer people on welfare rolls because the government should have no right to discriminate between citizens. Avoiding governmental discrimination is, in the long term, of greater importance than most individual policies.

        1. Because under current law there are all sorts of idiotic privileges only granted to married couples, such as a guarantee that the children will go to the other spouse,

          Not true. The guarantee is that children go to the other parent. If you are married and your wife has kids from another man and she dies or you get divorced, you are not getting those kids. They are going to the father. There is no guarantee that it goes to the other spouse. You guys are just fucking retarded on this subject. You just make shit up.

          hospital visitation rights Yea because a medical power of attorney is so fucking hard to get. And there are tons of unmarried straight couples out there who seem to somehow survive this incredible oppression.

          Why do you tell yourself these fairy tails? You want to believe so badly that you change reality to fit your desires.

          1. Yea because a medical power of attorney is so fucking hard to get.

            Doesn’t matter shouldn’t have to do it. Calling the well-documented privileges of marriage a fairy-tale does not make it so Red TOny.

            1. Doesn’t matter shouldn’t have to do it.

              Why?: Since when is taking responsibility for your affairs something people shouldn’t have to do? You are arguing that the government should step in so gays don’t have to manage their own affairs.

              Again, thanks for playing. Now yell Red Tony and let the adults talk for a while.

    2. Yup, hope this catches on.

  9. Is getting a blowjob while passed out grounds for divorce in a gay marriage?

    1. Annulment

  10. I’ve been looking to apply for a baptism license for my cat, but I can’t find the relevant state law, so I’m starting to think that his soul might just be damned. And my flossing and shoelace-tying licenses are up at the end of the month, but I’ve yet to hear back from the clerk’s office on how to renew those. Any ideas?

    Maybe one of the red-ass states will finally erect a partial wall between marriage and the state out of spite and we’ll see accidental libertarianism in action.

    1. See above. AL has done just that.

      1. That bill died last week.

        1. If we’re talking about the Albritton legislation, that is. There may be more.

        2. Awwwww. Too bad. So, you’re saying I’m slow?

          *must have been the lead*

  11. -2015
    -Not liking pinstripes

    ISHYGDDT

  12. Isn’t there a straightforward equal protection violation here?

    1. Isn’t there a straightforward equal protection violation here?

      Equal protection, probably. Straightforward isn’t so clear.

      Generally, the question of whether the equal protection clause has been violated arises when a state grants a particular class of individuals the right to engage in an activity yet denies other individuals the same right. There is no clear rule for deciding when a classification is unconstitutional. The Supreme Court has dictated the application of different tests depending on the type of classification and its effect on fundamental rights

      Cornell Law School Equal Protection

  13. Equality under the law is paramount. As long as governmental entities confer benefits upon legally married couples, those benefits must necessarily be applicable to anybody choosing to seek a marriage license. Obviously, the only benefits I refer to herein are ones that are exemptions from state-imposed byrdens of any sort, not positive perks that encumber third parties for the gain of the couples in question.

    Ideally, such burdens would exist for nobody, and government would be entirely uninvolved in marriage.

  14. The landscapers next door are using a wood chipper!!!!! Heeeelllllllllpppp mmmmmeeeeee!!!!!!

    1. A real one, or one of the goofy-ass little ones? The big ones are SWEET. You can grind all sorts of stuff up in them.

      1. It’s a big fucker. Hitched to a big ol dump truck.

      2. Gillespie closes his office door and sobs as softly as he might into his futon cushion.

  15. Why do I never see any libertarians declaring that the institution of marriage is horribly authoritarian when they aren’t using that as an excuse to argue against gay marriage?

    It’s weird – it’s like when anyone other than a gay person gets married they say ‘congratulations’ but when a gay person gets married they say ‘why are you yoking yourself to this fascist institution.’ Can’t quite figure out why that is.

    1. And is it just me or would it be more believable coming from an unmarried person?

    2. And a good number of them shackled themselves. Obviously a youthful indiscretion they will soon remedy with a divorce on principle.

    3. Why do I never see any libertarians declaring that the institution of marriage is horribly authoritarian when they aren’t using that as an excuse to argue against gay marriage?

      Because you haven’t been paying attention or don’t know much. Libertarians have been against government marriage for decades. They have made these arguments for as long as there has been libertarians. They only stopped when people like you decided gays were cool.

    4. It’s weird – it’s like when anyone other than a gay person gets married they say ‘congratulations’ but when a gay person gets married they say ‘why are you yoking yourself to this fascist institution.’ Can’t quite figure out why that is.

      Who’s ‘they’? I always say, “I’m sorry”. Gay or straight.

  16. OT

    hackers took it all.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/…..nance.html

    The union said it is basing its assessment on internal OPM briefings. The agency has sought to downplay the damage, saying that only limited personally identifying information was breached.

    “We believe that Social Security numbers were not encrypted, a cybersecurity failure that is absolutely indefensible and outrageous,” the letter said.

    “Based on the sketchy information OPM has provided, we believe that the Central Personnel Data File was the targeted database, and that the hackers are now in possession of all personnel data for every federal employee, every federal retiree, and up to one million former federal employees.”

    Well that’s just a darn shame. Imagine all those put upon DOJ employees having to signup for fraud and credit check protection. Maybe they should issue a subpoena!

    1. OPM? Office of Pimp Management?

    2. On a serious note, this is why we desperately need a cyber-security omnibus bill.

      1. Are you suggesting this was a false flag?

        1. No, I’m suggesting we act before yet another crisis goes bad, sitting in the fridge.

  17. I religiously object to all aspects of my job. Now I’m going to go home and watch Netflix for the next 60 years and I’ll thank you for delivering my paychecks on time.

    1. Even an incremental improvement in American productivity is a good thing.

  18. John, Jesus is the omnipotent creator of the cosmos. If everyone on this thread can see straight through your bullshit, I’m pretty sure He can too. And I’m also pretty sure He had something to say about bearing false witness. Nobody buys this quasi-libertarian “logic;” everyone knows you just have a boner for Christ and fat angry men who tell you He hates gays, so just fucking say so. You’d make less of a fool of yourself.

  19. We already have an ironclad protection against issuing marriage licenses with which you disagree: don’t have a job as the county employee responsible for marriage licenses. I’ve yet to be asked even once to issue a marriage license, so anecdotally I can attest that the system works.

    1. And now, thanks to t his law, the dissenters’ jobs also don’t involve marriages – so no problem, I suppose?

    2. What if it’s the 1100 benefits conferred on couples by marriage that I disagree? Am I free to do my job or pay my taxes while disregard those?

  20. Really, Scott? So, Michigan today said that adoption agencies can refuse to grant adoptions if it violates religious beliefs. You sympathetic toward that as well? Or do you draw line for the right of religious objections just at marriages? Better think it through.

  21. I am a beta male. My ‘wife’ is an alpha female. This isn’t sounding so good already… but I have to stand up. I asked her to marry me a few months after we met. She said ‘No’. A few months later she asked me to marry her. I said ‘No’. I’m beta, not omega, fer chrissake! She could tell you the exact date of when this started. It started sometime in the 1990’s, is all I can remember. It’s mostly calm now and getting close to the twilight of our years.

    Just FYI, is it still possible for a couple to live their lives privately, even with kids. I am proud of this relationship we have. I search for no others. I seek no approval or authentication for it from the government or anyone else. She would be tepid about this statement, frankly. I speak only for myself.

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