Gay Marriage

What Does Today's Gay Marriage Ruling Mean for Religious Organizations?

Could Christian schools and other groups lose their tax status for treating same-sex couples differently?

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People rally outside the Supreme Court after SCOTUS handed down its gay marriage decision
Patrick Klinetobe / Reason

Religious types have long worried a ruling in favor of nationwide same-sex marriage could lead to the revocation of rights and privileges for religious organizations. During the arguments in Obergefell v. Hodges—the case in which the Supreme Court today ruled that gay couples "may exercise the fundamental right to marry" in any state—there was an exchange that lent some credence to those fears.

Justice Samuel Alito cited Bob Jones University vs. the United States, a 1983 decision allowing the federal government to strip a Christian university of its tax-exempt status for discriminating against interracial couples.

"In the Bob Jones case, the Court held that a college was not entitled to tax­exempt status if it opposed interracial marriage or interracial dating. So would the same apply to a university or a college if it opposed same­-sex marriage?" he asked.

Responded the solicitor general: "You know, ­­I don't think I can answer that question without knowing more specifics, but it's certainly going to be an issue. I don't deny that. I don't deny that, Justice Alito. It is going to be an issue."

Today, some wonder whether the Court just opened the door for the government to withhold tax or other benefits from private, faith-affiliated organizations that refuse to perform gay weddings, offer housing to gay couples, etc. From a recent article in The New York Times:

Conservative religious schools all over the country forbid same-sex relationships, from dating to couples' living in married-student housing, and they fear they will soon be forced to make a wrenching choice. If the Supreme Court this month finds a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, the schools say they will have to abandon their policies that prohibit gay relationships or eventually risk losing their tax-exempt status…as a violation of a "fundamental national public policy"…

In a recent letter to congressional leaders, officials from more than 70 schools, including Catholic high schools and evangelical colleges, said that a Supreme Court ruling approving same-sex marriage would put at risk all schools "adhering to traditional religious and moral values."

Critics allege this is merely panic-mongering on the part of gay marriage opponents, noting that "there are religious denominations that ban women's ordination, and still have tax-exempt status."

But it's not clear that precedent is precisely relevant. By elevating marriage to a "fundamental right" in its ruling, the Court today gave it a special status that may not apply to, say, the right to be ordained a Roman Catholic priest.

The Supreme Court justices themselves disagree about what this decision means for religiously affiliated organizations. Writing for the majority, Anthony Kennedy offered assurances that people of faith would still be allowed "to advocate with utmost, sincere conviction that, by divine precepts, same-sex marriage should not be condoned." But John Roberts, the chief justice, warned in his dissent that protecting a right to "advocate" is not necessarily the same as guaranteeing one's freedom to "exercise" religion without reprisal.

Relevant sections from three of the opinions are below the fold.

From the Opinion of the Court:

Many who deem same-sex marriage to be wrong reach that conclusion based on decent and honorable religious or philosophical premises, and neither they nor their beliefs are disparaged here. But when that sincere, personal opposition becomes enacted law and public policy, the necessary consequence is to put the imprimatur of the State itself on an exclusion that soon demeans or stigmatizes those whose own liberty is then denied. 

Finally, it must be emphasized that religions, and those who adhere to religious doctrines, may continue to advocate with utmost, sincere conviction that, by divine pre- cepts, same-sex marriage should not be condoned. The First Amendment ensures that religious organizations and persons are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths, and to their own deep aspirations to continue the family structure they have long revered. The same is true of those who oppose same-sex marriage for other reasons. In turn, those who believe allowing same- sex marriage is proper or indeed essential, whether as a matter of religious conviction or secular belief, may engage those who disagree with their view in an open and search- ing debate. The Constitution, however, does not permit the State to bar same-sex couples from marriage on the same terms as accorded to couples of the opposite sex. 

From Roberts' dissenting opinion:

Federal courts are blunt instruments when it comes to creating rights. They have constitutional power only to resolve concrete cases or controversies; they do not have the flexibility of legislatures to address concerns of parties not before the court or to anticipate problems that may arise from the exercise of a new right. Today's decision, for example, creates serious questions about religious liberty. Many good and decent people oppose same-sex marriage as a tenet of faith, and their freedom to exercise religion is—unlike the right imagined by the majority— actually spelled out in the Constitution. Amdt. 1. 

Respect for sincere religious conviction has led voters and legislators in every State that has adopted same-sex marriage democratically to include accommodations for religious practice. The majority's decision imposing same-sex marriage cannot, of course, create any such accommodations. The majority graciously suggests that religious believers may continue to "advocate" and "teach" their views of marriage. Ante, at 27. The First Amendment guarantees, however, the freedom to "exercise" religion. Ominously, that is not a word the majority uses. 

Hard questions arise when people of faith exercise religion in ways that may be seen to conflict with the new right to same-sex marriage—when, for example, a religious college provides married student housing only to opposite-sex married couples, or a religious adoption agency declines to place children with same-sex married couples. Indeed, the Solicitor General candidly acknowledged that the tax exemptions of some religious institutions would be in question if they opposed same-sex marriage. See Tr. of Oral Arg. on Question 1, at 36–38. There is little doubt that these and similar questions will soon be before this Court. Unfortunately, people of faith can take no comfort in the treatment they receive from the majority today. 

And from Clarence Thomas' dissenting opinion:

Numerous amici—even some not supporting the States—have cautioned the Court that its decision here will "have unavoidable and wide-ranging implications for religious liberty." Brief for General Conference of Seventh-Day Adventists et al. as Amici Curiae 5. In our society, marriage is not simply a governmental institution; it is a religious institution as well. Id., at 7. Today's decision might change the former, but it cannot change the latter. It appears all but inevitable that the two will come into conflict, particularly as individuals and churches are confronted with demands to participate in and endorse civil marriages between same-sex couples. 

The majority appears unmoved by that inevitability. It makes only a weak gesture toward religious liberty in a single paragraph, ante, at 27. And even that gesture indicates a misunderstanding of religious liberty in our Nation's tradition. Religious liberty is about more than just the protection for "religious organizations and persons . . . as they seek to teach the principles that are so ful- filling and so central to their lives and faiths." Ibid. Religious liberty is about freedom of action in matters of religion generally, and the scope of that liberty is directly correlated to the civil restraints placed upon religious practice.7

Although our Constitution provides some protection against such governmental restrictions on religious practices, the People have long elected to afford broader protections than this Court's constitutional precedents mandate. Had the majority allowed the definition of marriage to be left to the political process—as the Constitution requires—the People could have considered the religious liberty implications of deviating from the traditional definition as part of their deliberative process. Instead, the majority's decision short-circuits that process, with potentially ruinous consequences for religious liberty. 

NEXT: John Roberts Urges Judicial Deference to Congress on Obamacare, Judicial Deference to State Legislatures on Gay Marriage

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  1. Let’s hope so.
    Social clubs have no legitimate claim to special tax treatment.

    1. So says the statist.

    2. If you think a religion is not more than a social club, I suggest that you are a historical illiterate.

      I’m not saying they are more than a social club in an exclusively GOOD way, mind?.

      1. It’s not historical illiteracy to call it a “social club,” any more than it is historical illiteracy to call marriage a “contract.” It’s just an attempt to distill religion down into its most basic form in order to determine its tax treatment. I can’t see why religion should be treated differently than a social club for the purposes of taxation.

        1. In a perfect world, and where the subject is taxation ONLY I might agree with you. In the real world, there are inequalities I would like to tackle a lot sooner.

          1. What are these inequalities of which you speak? I’m not being a smart-ass. I’m just not following and I am genuinely curious.

            1. I’m not being a smart-ass

              Then wtf are you doing here?

        2. yes. but the entire article is a red herring.

          the problem with gay marriage isn’t religion losing tax exempt status. they shouldn’t have it to begin with.

          the problem is that we don’t have freedom of association and this will compel a confrontation between religious liberty and (lack of) freedom of association.

          gays who push for ssm are mendacious scum. its not complex. they want guys with guns to force culture to accept them. its that simple.

          that is what this ruling is about, not taxes.

        3. social clubs are where you go to get drunk with your kin. the business os for profit, although it may offer insurance and other benefits to it’s members

          a church is a non=profit institution devoted to the public good. the money they bring in is for overhead (salaries, utilities, mortgage/rent) with the rest going to charity, mostly for non-members. that’s why it’s tax exempt

          1. That’s why it was tax exempt…

      2. Brooks is totally fucking illiterate. You didn’t know that?

    3. Let’s just give everyone the special tax treatment. Equality under the law!

      1. But then what good is marriage?

        /Leftie kid with his broken toy

    4. Social clubs have no legitimate claim to special tax treatment.

      So much for separation of Church and State.

      I expect to see your shocked face when removing that separation winds up leveraged by a Santorum of Huckabee.

      1. Wait, isn’t giving churches special tax status degrading of the principle of the separation of church and state?

        1. Yes.

          1. No. It only is if the government gives one religious group tax-exempt status and not another one.

            1. L Ron thanks you for your wisdom.

        2. Indeed it is. I don’t see why it isn’t a textbook example of “establishment of religion”, myself.

          1. It certainly helped establish Scientology.

        3. Actually, no, it isn’t. The reason churches do not pay taxes is that they are separate from the state. The very act of taxing them involves the state in their internal affairs.

          1. But “separation of church and state” is shorthand; sometimes useful, sometimes misleading. 1A says Congress shall make no law establishing or prohibting the free exercise of religion.

            Are you saying taxing a religious org would prohibit the free exercise of religion? It’s an argument, I guess. But “separation of church and state” is not a legal doctrine.

            1. you can’t tax a right like you cant tax a person to vote and you should not be able to tax guns and ammo but that doesn’t matter to the nitwits in charge. taxing something is the taking away of a right.

            2. I’m just theorizing here but certain radical religious organizations might practice some sort of ‘god’s love is free so were not going to take your money’ doctrine. I assume those exist or something of the like. I can also imagine taxation would have some sort of detrimental — possibly far reaching effect — on the way they currently ‘exercise’ their religion.

            3. removing tax-free status from a church or church org -because- it didn’t do what the State demanded IS “prohibiting the free exercise of religion”,since the church/church org was acting based on their religious precepts. the State is using it’s tax power to coerce the church into complying with it.

              1. THIS

    5. Social clubs have no legitimate claim to special tax treatment.

      Like it or not, they actually do. That’s what a non-profit org is, regardless of its purpose. Once upon a time libertarians weren’t so much into the whole corporate income tax thing, so this was kind of a non-issue as a topic of discussion. I guess when you can use the tax code as a cudgel to fuck the people you don’t like, principals become a lot more important than principles.

      1. Seeing a lot of that from many self-proclaimed libertarians here who, as it appears, would love to rake all religious institutions over the coals.

        1. It’s not raking religious institutions over the coals, it’s treating them the same as any other institution. The only thing that tax exempt status does is allow the institution to retain untaxed revenue that exceed their expenditure – ie income. The discrepancy between their status and others, including individuals, is inherently distortionary.

          1. I agree its distortionary.

            The problem with taxes isn’t that churches aren’t. It’s that others are.

            Lower taxes entirely, but don’t be preferentially about it.

          2. If we are going to have tax emempt status for non profits then religious non profits should also get the same treatment

  2. It doesn’t matter anymore.

  3. Mu question is how is this going to be enforced? There isn’t any federal law supporting their decision. If a court clerk refuses to issue a license to a same sex couple what law is he breaking? Will the Feds arrest him? How can the federal government force a state to issue any kind of state license? Is this the death of the tenth amendment?

    1. The 10th has been as dead as the 9th for some time now.

      You can always get a court order/mandamus from the Feds – if not obeyed, contempt follows.

    2. Why would a clerk need to be arrested? He’s a government employee. Reprimand and re-train him or fire him. You don’t carry your personal moral objections in your briefcase with you to work. Unless you work for yourself, choosing whether to issue a license isn’t your call. You’re a representative of the government and you shouldn’t get to discriminate. If you can’t handle that, work somewhere else.

      1. *Edit: I can’t think of a case when a self-employed worker would issue a license. Maybe a fake one that’s laminated in the home office that entitles you to a free juice with your purchase.

      2. I thought he meant more in the terms of, say a County Clerk refuses (and forbids staff from doing so)….does the State intervene, or the Feds. Either State or Fed court would likely issue an order.

        1. It all depends on how it’s handled, but probably the state first unless the state refused to enforce the law.

          But IceTrey did say “arrest,” which I just think is silly.

          1. That’s because you’re an idiot.

            Ultimately all government involves the threat and use of deadly force.

            It may take several steps to get there in this hypothetical case, but get there it must or the SCOTUS’s ruling is irrelevant.

            So in this case, local county clerk refuses to issue marriage liscence.
            Offended person sues for violating his rights as expressed by SCOTUS
            Judge issues ‘order’ to force the issue of the lisence.
            Clerk ignores judges order.

            Then what? Everyone shrugs their shoulders and says oh well?

            Or does the judge engage the coercive power of the state to enforce his opinion?

            1. It would be shocking, wrong, and just unprecedented, but the clerk could be fired. Of course, she would retain full benefits, pension, etc.

              1. If the clerk were in SEIU that union would first kick that person out for not taking a pro-NAMBLA position and then the state could fire that person.

                Also, the offended person could sue for damages. Urban areas cirrently accept paying out large sums of cash to folks bein mishandled by police. Dunno if they want to pay same sex couples that weren’t issued marriage licenses the same. Also, you can’t really choose to be brutalized by police whereas thousands of unmarried same sex couples could descend on the refusing court house opening up a tobacco-like payout class action suit.

      3. He’s a STATE government employee. If the state government doesn’t support this ruling why would they do anything? It’s like how state cops in Colorado don’t enforce federal drug laws.

        1. This isn’t fed statute. Most judges would feel like they were bound to uphold a SCT ruling.

          1. Yes, and this. Courts would almost certainly side with the Supreme Court.

        2. He might be a county employee, not a state one. And what if the clerk is just acting alone, not in deference to the wishes of his county or state? His personal moral beliefs prevent him from issuing the license. In that case, he’d be reprimanded or fired, wouldn’t he?

          If the state won’t do anything, that’s what federalism is for. It’s not just unidirectional, as in deference to the rights of states. The federal government also exists to check the power of states (in theory, anyway).

          1. I would be interested to know how many county clerks have refused to record a divorce because of their religious convictions.

        3. likely a county employee, perhaps elected, who does his/her job as described in state law

      4. You don’t carry your personal moral objections in your briefcase with you to work.

        Tell that to Lois Lerner.

      5. Freedom of association can not extend to government employees in the exercise of their job functions. Since government is supposed to stem from everyone, and paid for by everyone. In theory anyway. Same thing with emergency services.

        1. Which is precisely why government should only be allowed to do very limited things in well defined areas.

    3. What do you mean? The IRS or some other bureaucracy decides they will no longer extend the tax benefit. The targeted party can try to fight it, and likely bring it back to the Supreme Court.

    4. If a court clerk refuses to issue a license to a same sex couple what law is he breaking?

      After today’s ruling, the civil rights laws.

    5. How can the federal government force a state to issue any kind of state license?

      They aren’t. They are simply saying that if they do, they must not discriminate.

      1. Read the opinion again.

        1. The state still has the option to stop issuing marriage licenses to EVERYONE, which is the correct solution to begin with.

          1. We can only hope that such thinking will catch on.

          2. The state still has the option to stop issuing marriage licenses to EVERYONE

            That’s a whole other SCOTUS ruling, but it’s very possible (probably likely) based on this ruling that states would actually not be allowed to do that. Marriage is a “fundamental right” tied to a lot of federal benefits; by failing to issue licenses, the states would probably be in violation of the constitution by restricting access to that “fundamental right” and the federal benefits it entails.

            1. you’re probably right.

              this issue has a lot to do with money, that’s how the DOMA case showed harm to gain standing.

              if federal & state benefits were agnostic on marital status, they wouldn’t need to know, and people couldn’t show monetary harm because of being treated differently because of their marital status

              without that happening first, it would be hard for states to stop issuing licenses.

              BTW, my home state of Pennsylvania didn’t issue marriage licenses until 1885. There was a law that said anyone under 21 had to get parental permission, but other than that people only needed to find a clergyman or justice of the peace to do the ceremony

          3. That is not what the majority opinion holds. If the majority opinion had limited its reasoning to the Equal Protection clause, then your scenario you would lawful. But the majority also found a substantive Due Process right to marry. The states, having established a right to marry, cannot take it away.

          4. Exactly. The proper response of many states would be to note that this SCOTUS ruling has invalidated their existing law.

            1. When Montana’s “reasonable and prudent” daytime highway speed limit was invalidated the people did not lose their ability to drive on the highway, the highways lost their daytime speed limit until the legislature was able to pass a new one.

              Same principle holds here.

    6. Mu question is how is this going to be enforced?

      How can you force someone to bake a cake?

      1. Yes, there will be LOTS of SJW’s out there acting as little helps to those progressive state AG’s crusading for social justice. My state of WA is full of them. And our AG is a real SJW piece of shit/work.

        1. For abortion, the test is if there’s a substantial burden. not everyone is required to provide abortions, the right is satisfied as long as it’s reasonably easy enough to find someone who will

          with gay rights as a civil right, it has been implemented as EVERYONE MUST ACCOMMODATE. If 9 of 10 bakeries on a street will provide a cake for a gay wedding, that’s not good enough – the 10th must be sued out of business by an administrative law judge (who’s not even a real judge, because he works for the executive branch).

          I fear this is what’s in store for churches and religious schools. People will sue for damages, when they ask the church or school to provide them with a service they know will not be forthcoming. COMPLIANCE IS REQUIRED or else they will bring down the wrath of the state.

      2. SCOTUS will be setting up concentration camps.

  4. Nope there is no way this won’t turn into a witch hunt to root out the unbelievers.

    1. Given the way things seem to escalate these days, I give it a week before lawsuits are filed.

      1. That long?

        1. Exactly. We went from “SC statehouse, take down that flag” to Civil War video games being taken off the shelves in about 72 hours.

          1. Zombies don’t even need to bite anymore to pass along the virus that kills most brain activity…

  5. “Religious liberty is about freedom of action in matters of religion generally, and the scope of that liberty is directly correlated to the civil restraints placed upon religious practice.”

    Exactly, and it’s worth noting that the discussion in this article and the Supreme Court’s opinion don’t even touch on the question of business owners with scruples about baking gay wedding cakes, making gay T-shirts, including same-sex couples in tours, etc., etc. (to cite some cases which have *already* arisen).

    1. And here’s the footnote which Justice Thomas applied to the quoted passage:

      “Concerns about threats to religious liberty in this context are not
      unfounded. During the hey-day of antimiscegenation laws in this
      country, for instance, Virginia imposed criminal penalties on ministers
      who performed marriage in violation of those laws, though their religions
      would have permitted them to perform such ceremonies. Va.
      Code Ann. ?20?60 (1960).”

      So it seems that arguments based on the miscegenation laws aren’t the treasured monopoly of the gay-lib side!

      Obama’s spokesman gave the game away…asked a direct question in the Supreme Court, his dedication to ethical full disclosure superseded Obama’s policy of concealing the full implications of his own policies.

      Recall that the IRS, without Congressional approval, revoked the nonprofit status of Bob Jones University because it wouldn’t allow interracial relationships. The Supreme Court backed the IRS because public policy.

      So unless we’re going to say that gay marriage is somehow different from interracial marriage, then nonprofits which give privileges real (man/woman) marriage will be treated just like Bob Jones.

      1. real (man/woman) marriage

        That is like Bo-level trolling. And of course I fall for it.

  6. It’s amusing to read the mocking “omg Scalia is pissed!” articles on huffpo from today and yesterday and note how somewhere around half the comments are wishing horrible things would happen to him. Sounds like threatening a judge to me!

    1. But did they say anything about woodchippers?

      /DoJ – SDNY

    2. Huffpo sucks obo dick so they get a pass

      1. And after today the can atempt to marry The Publically Great Felated Phallus. In all 50 states!!

    3. Yep. Where’s the subpoena now??

  7. I think, regardless of the ultimate outcome, the newly empowered gay activists are going to be more aggressive in pursuit of their enemies, and will have more “process-as-punishment” options in their toolkits as a result of this.

    Its a day for Iron Laws, so let me just put this one out there:

    Foreseeable consequences are not unintended.

    Nice of Reason to put up an article that, garsh, maybe a SCOTUS mandate on gay marriage isn’t an unalloyed good. The day the decision is handed down. Reminds me of all the furrowed brows on network news shows after Obama was elected: “Geez, we really don’t much about this guy.”

    Maybe you should have said something earlier?

    1. Foreseeable consequences are not unintended

      LOL Libertarians claim even though they knew this was going to happen it is not their fault. They hoped it wouldn’t and that is good enough.

      Libertarians don’t care about religious liberty and can’t be counted on to defend it. When this happens and people literally start being bankrupted and unable to run a business for their religious beliefs, Reason will rub its chin and say that is too bad but not give a fuck. And at least 50% of its readers will be happy about it.

      1. That’s a broad brush you’ve got there, John.

        1. Sometimes it fits. Do you honestly think Reason or Cato will do anything? I don’t.

          1. I wouldn’t judge this entire commentariat one way or the other. Way to many opinions in both directions.

            I agree with you that some people are missing the forests for the trees in this decision but I wouldn’t even begin to attempt to judge 50% of the opinions here.

          2. Reason and Cato don’t represent me. I do.

      2. On the rag today, John?

        1. Sure. I happen to think this happening is a bad thing. Since you don’t, I can understand why you are happy. I find the idea of religious freedom ending in this country pretty bad. But a lot of people on this board are excited by it and think it is a right and good thing. Apparently you are one of them. Don’t let my concerns ruin your day. You got what you wanted. People are no longer going to be able to live lives and express views you don’t like. Be happy and enjoy it.

          1. Did you even read this article? Nowhere did it say that religious people and religious schools can’t continue to discriminate against homosexuals, and certainly nowhere did it say that religious people can’t “express views” others don’t like. This article mainly concerns tax-exempt status for institutions that discriminate.

            1. Oh you are an illiterate fascist too. No shit head. it is about the ability of being able to run a school or any kind of a public accommodation without getting sued. And being able to say it isn’t good enough you fucking half wit. You have to be able to act on it or you are not free to hold the belief.

              I get it dude. You won. you are drunk wiht joy over shoving a boot on your enemies’ face. Go enjoy and let the adults talk about this issue for a while.

              1. You are unbelievably stupid and there’s not a lot of point in talking to you, but once again: this merely concerns tax-exempt status for religious schools. And regardless of your position on that, you would be the fascist if you believed that homosexuals should be treated unequally under the law simply so that a religious school can receive this tax treatment.

              2. He’s got the bit in his teeth and away he goes.

            2. Yesterday, nowhere in the US was any gay couple prevented from living together or from engaging in any consensual sexual activity. Nowhere were they prohibited from having a party and a ceremony (assuming they found willing participants but that should be understand by libertarians). This ruling mainly concerns their ‘right’ to now receive (compel) they labor of others in the form of government benefits or through accommodations laws.

              See how easy that was?

              As I see it the only rights they received that do not impose on others are POA for medical decisions, joint adoption, and possibly inheritance although the latter has other externalities.

              1. Your beef is with the benefits and accommodation laws, then, not the right of homosexuals to marry.

                1. Bueller? Bueller? Tell me what ‘right’ was granted today then if not benefits and accommodations? Don’t just mumble about equality, get specific. What does being married even mean?

                  Living together: check
                  Screwing: check
                  Wearing black clothing in the sun in a late Texas spring: check
                  Tax status: ah, now it’s interesting
                  SS spousal benefits: winner!
                  Health insurance: *ding*
                  Adoption: OK, this is an easy call but individuals could always adopt anyway
                  POA: already law but more paperwork required (but is it really any more than the marriage license itself?)

                  1. Tell me what ‘right’ was granted today then if not benefits and accommodations?

                    The right to be treated equally under the law.

                    1. In what regards? It’s clearly uncomfortable for you to spell them out. You’re OK with expanding the entitlement state as long as it’s done ‘equally’ (payers vs. takers excepted, of course). Just admit that that is a trade off you are willing to make.

                    2. Not uncomfortable at all. The government’s involvement in marriage gives special privileges to married people. The spouse gets custody of children in the event of death. The spouse inherits all the property and debt, by law. You may not be forced to testify against your spouse. You can make medical decisions for an incapacitated spouse…

                      I am completely against the government’ involvement. This could and should all be done contractually. And there should be no government subsidies…to anyone.

                      That said, the government granting said privileges to one group and not another is a fucking abomination. It’s immoral AND it is clearly unconstitutional under 14A (as are most things government does for its cronies).

                      If you are going to make a law, that law needs to apply equally to everyone (despite the law being bad).

                    3. That said, the government granting said privileges to one group and not another is a fucking abomination

                      Such an absurd claim. They already had the same rights as everyone else, they just did not wish to practice them.

                      “You can marry someone of the opposite sex just like every, single, other person.”

                      “But I don’t want to marry someone of the opposite sex so I don’t have that right”?

                    4. Such an absurd claim. They already had the same rights as everyone else, they just did not wish to practice them.

                      Respectfully MG, of all the arguments I’ve heard, people repeating on this issue, this is the most stupid attempt to justify treating people like shit that I’ve ever heard. You should really be ashamed. It’s beneath you.

                      I suppose if Congress defined marriage as “a union of two people with similar hair color”, you’d be fine with that then?

                      14A says government doesn’t get to define marriage as between a man and a woman.

                2. And using this ruling as a pretext for government to force itself on religious institutions. Which is the ENTIRE point of this. As if Obama gives a fucking shit about gays, blacks, or anyone else for that matter. He’s already fucking the blacks, who suffer massively greater unemployment, by stepping over them to let millions flow skilled laborers in from Mexico and central/South America.

                  All to get more voter for the Marxist Democrats. Which is the only thing that matters. I’m convinced that Obama and progressivekind would gladly reinstitute black slavery and forced neutering of gays if they thought it would successfully complete the transformation into a neo-Soviet/Maoist hybrid with him in charge.

            3. This article mainly concerns tax-exempt status for institutions that discriminate.

              So, you’ll give special treatment to the religions that are willing to toe the lion. Have you really thought beyond the immediate?

              1. If you read my other comments, you’ll see that I don’t support the tax code being used to manipulate human behavior, good or bad. So no, I don’t want to give special treatment to a church that does support gay marriage, either. But we’re not talking about an affirmative giving-out of special treatment; we’re talking about *LOSING* a privilege that’s already in place and written into the tax code. The fact that anyone would argue this treatment is religious liberty is utterly deluded.

                1. So, just to understand:

                  A state that chooses to issue marriage licenses can’t recognize any distinction between straight and gay marriages, but

                  A state that chooses to issue tax exemptions, perfectly well can make a distinction between straight and gay marriages?

                  A little help here?

                  1. A little help here?

                    Now you’re getting it.

                    Tax exemptions in and of themselves violate 14A.

                    Government is writing law that favors one group or individual over another. Yes that is a very strict interpretation of 14A and such an interpretation is VERY libertarian.

                    All laws should apply equally to everyone and if the law can’t be written as such, it probably doesn’t fall under a legitimate function of government and shouldn’t be passed to begin with.

                    1. Bingo – and this should have been (or still could) be the key challenge to ACA.

                      Regarding the religious tax-exemption quarrel, I favor elimination of non-profit/tax-exempt status, and a rewrite with specific accounting/tax code criteria. Public accommodation laws, and the inner workings/beliefs of the organization should have no bearing.

                    2. “Tax exemptions in and of themselves violate 14A.”

                      We’ll eagerly await the result of the lawsuit you are bringing.

                2. It’s written into the tax code because the act of taxation involves the state in the affairs of the church in question. As your willingness to use it to penalize those churches whose opinions you disapprove of amply demonstrates.

                3. Great you “don’t support” but you certainly will tolerate.

          2. So John, I think the plain language of the 14th says the every level of government must treat my brother’s marriage to his husband the same way it treats my marriage to my wife.

            A fundamentally different problem is that 95% of the population believes that government is a tool for imposing their will on other people.

            So yes, I am pleased that every jurisdiction must now recognize my brother’s marriage.

            And I am also appalled that private individuals can be crushed by lawsuits for refusing to do business with my brother and his husband.

            1. You are not that appalled. You are willing to see it happen so your brother’s marriage gets recognized. The world isn’t perfect. The price of getting your brothers’ marriage recognized is those people getting crushed. That doesn’t bother you very much or you would think getting your brother’s marriage recognized wasn’t worth the price.

              It is that simple.

              1. You are not that appalled.

                Bullshit John. I know you are more reasonable than this.

                There are two problems. I want both problems fixed. One is now fixed. The other one is going to be very hard to fix.

                That doesn’t bother you very much or you would think getting your brother’s marriage recognized wasn’t worth the price.

                Go fuck yourself. Seriously dude. Fixing government is actually first priority.

                1. The world isn’t perfect Kinnath. Your brother’s marriage is now legal. That comes with this price. There is no way around it. You think that price is worth paying. If you don’t, why do you support gay marriage? Sorry but “I am going to pretend the world is otherwise” doesn’t cut it.

                  Maybe your brother’s marriage is more important than those people. I don’t know. But don’t lie to me or your self and say that isn’t the decision you made. It is.

                  1. Sorry but “I am going to pretend the world is otherwise” doesn’t cut it.

                    What the fuck are you talking about?

                    I have been posting here for years. I have always opposed bullshit suits that force business owners to violate their beliefs. I have argued in support of Catholic organizations refusing to provide abortion services or birth control to employees.

                    To repeat myself. There are two fucking problems. I want both problems fixed. SCOTUS fixed one of them today. I am not happy that fixing this problem will exacerbate the other problem. We need to all work to fix the fucking legal system and the body of judges that let these bullshit lawsuits go through.

                    1. then accommodation must be scrapped in favor of unreasonable burden

                2. Are you sure he’s more reasonable than this? I haven’t seen any evidence of that.

                  1. This is the hill that John has been waiting to die on for at least a couple years now. Maybe if he lets it all out of his system now he’ll be more rational later.

                    1. There’s a hill out there for all of us, each must choose. *stares off unblinking at the horizon*

              2. The price of getting your brothers’ marriage recognized is those people getting crushed.

                The price of supporting the internal combustion engine is tens of thousands of road deaths every year. That doesn’t bother you very much or you would never have supported the internal combustion engine in the first place.

                1. The price of supporting the internal combustion engine is tens of thousands of road deaths every year. That doesn’t bother you very much or you would never have supported the internal combustion engine in the first place.

                  Yes I, as a travel enthusiast, acknowledge that the freedom provided by autos comes at the cost of tens of thousand of deaths a year and an order of magnitude more serious injuries.

                  So now, will supporters of SSM, in turn, acknowledge that their pet project comes at the cost of a loss of freedom of association and other freedoms?

                  1. Autos and internal combustion engines, like guns, don’t kill people. People kill people. Autos, however, certainly should come with silencers inside and outside.

            2. And yet, you are curiously silent on plural marriages. Very sad.. And hypocritical.

              1. Woodchipper.

                I have posted many many times over the years that every conceivable collection of consenting adults should be allowed marry. I even posted that in an earlier thread today.

          3. I, too, am concerned by the threat to religious liberty that exists in the US today, especially under the Obama administration. That does not, however, change my opinion that laws preventing homosexual couples from marrying are discriminatory and deny the Constitutionally guaranteed Equal Protection under the law.

            You can hold both opinions there. Many (probably most) libertarians do.

            1. You are willing to sacrifice the religious liberty of others to see gays get the right to marry. How noble of you.

              1. Sacrifice the religious liberty of others to… what, exactly? Get a special exemption from taxes?

                Fuck that. The more people that get gored by that ox, the more people will want to see it put down.

            2. You don’t care about those people. Gay and their right to marry are more important. You knew giving gays the right to marry was going to crush those people and you supported it anyway. You may not like it but it is still a price you are willing to pay. So you are not that appalled or even concerned. You just say you are as a way to rationalize what you have done.

              1. Um, no, dude. You’re making a lot of assumptions about me that you have no basis for here.

                1. You knew it was going to happen and supported it anyway. Foreseeable consequences are foreseeable.

                  1. @John – I’ve been supporting gay marriage as long as I’ve been politically conscious, around age 15 back in the late 1990’s. The insane derpery of the left, while it has perhaps always existed, has gotten worse only in the last 5-10 years with the advent of social media.

                    The fact that ending one injustice might give rise to another type of injustice doesn’t mean that we should tolerate the first. Or the second.

                    Marriage equality is a victory for liberty. If and when religious freedom comes under threat, I will defend that too.

                    *With all that said, my support/opposition to any issue has very little impact on the course of world events. Yet I apparently am at fault for the Obama’s Justice Department’s mistreatment of religious organizations.

                    1. It has not gotten worse only i the last 5-10 years. It was always like this. Now the muzzle is coming off. It’s like when politically obtuse friends of mien tell me Obama can’t be as bad as I say he is because he has not turned the country into a Soviet dictatorship in one fell swoop. I tell them they are confusing his inability to do so with a lack of ambition to make it happen.

                  2. John, you are right. I knew the foreseeable consequences and yet I supported gay’s right to marry even though I also want to protect religious liberty. I was willing to ‘pay the price’ — I suppose because I think that the truly religious will have the strength to endure unjust treatment by the state, it’s a noble quality of the theirs.

                    I believe that all free Americans should be entitled to the same freedoms and rights as their fellow countrymen. If religion must suffer, then God forgive me, but I will pay that price.

                2. Life is about choices. People are judged by their actions. If some Congress critter introduced a bill to cut the NSA budget by 2%, but also ban private gun ownership, I doubt you would support it. Even though you’d probably love to cut the NSA budget. The cost is just too high. But what if someone introduced a bill to legalize all drugs, but ban guns? If you supported it, you could claim to care about gun rights still( and that could be true) but you would have to admit that you valued legal drugs over legal guns.

                  1. What if someone introduces a bill to legalize SSM? Oh. It wouldn’t pass? Then get SCOTUS to override it. Why bother having Congress at all?

              2. Yes, straight up. I am exactly what you think these other guys are.

                The right of homosexuals to marry is absolutely more important than the privilege of the religious to get special tax exemptions for being religious.

                1. the tax exemption isn’t my primary concern. it’s the existence of the churches themselves. people offended by lack of accommodation sue the churches. people attending church are shamed as bigots, etc. look to Canada to see clergy prohibited from preaching against homosexuality.

            3. I’d find you more believable if you held the same views of polygamist marriage.

              But you, like Reason, have been silent.

              1. Is this directed toward me? I have no problem with polygamist marriage

                1. I’m with you at least as far as marrying two hot bi babes. Especially if they make it all about me.

            4. Getting government out of marriage altogether would be the best solution.

              1. Bingo. As this decision is a 10A violation, period. The constitutional alternative is to unravel marriage from government action. That ultimately satisfies everyone.

              2. That’s not going to happen. Too much opportunity to manipulate benefits to buy votes.

          4. Further, the opinion today could not have come out any other way, what with the Full Faith and Credit Clause.

            How could one state allow gay marriage but not have it recognized by the neighboring state? That’s unworkable.

            If someone were gay-married in Maryland, then moved to Alabama, is the marriage invalidated entirely, or just in Alabama? If he then marries a woman in Alabama, would he be a polygamist if he went back to Maryland? Or is that hetero-marriage only valid in non-gay-marriage states? What if he’s legally gay-married, but dies while in a non-gay-marriage state? Does his property go to his next of kin?

            FF&C alone could have decided this.

            1. How could one state allow gay marriage but not have it recognized by the neighboring state?

              The same way one state can allow concealed carry but not have it recognized by the neighboring state?

              1. Not really analogous….

                1. Why not?

                  Both are state licenses. One (for CCW) is not recognized across state lines without specific action by the state.

                  Why should the other be? If a state can refuse to recognize my CCW license, why can’t it refuse to recognize my marriage license?

                  1. Well, for one thing, marriage is a legal status that carries with it a bundle of rights and legal consequences, particularly with respect to property ownership. The examples I listed in my question above are just a few issues that arise. Those issues don’t apply to carrying a firearm. You can stop carrying your firearm when you enter another state. Can you stop being married? Maybe, but does that mean you can then go get married again while you are in the non-SSM state? That’s nothing at all analogous to CCW.

                    I don’t disagree with you that concealed carry should be allowed in all states, but I don’t really get the point you are trying to make.

                    1. Well, for one thing, marriage is a legal status that carries with it a bundle of rights and legal consequences, particularly with respect to property ownership.

                      CCW is also a legal status that carries with it a bundle of rights (concerning carrying a weapon) and legal consequences (regarding how police searches are conducted, etc.), particularly with respect to property (gun) ownership.

                      You’re making R C Dean’s point for him.

                      You can stop carrying your firearm when you enter another state. Can you stop being married?

                      Irrelevant… it’s not about carrying the firearm… it’s about the license. You don’t lose your CCW license when you go into a different state. However, the other state does not recognize your CCW license from your home state.

                      Maybe, but does that mean you can then go get married again while you are in the non-SSM state?

                      Again, like above… it’s about the license. You don’t have to reapply for your CCW license every time you have to cross state borders. Similarly, you don’t have to reapply for a SSM license every time you cross state borders.

                    2. I still don’t see what his point is, though. CCW laws are crap. I agree. That doesn’t have any bearing on my observation that the hodge-podge of SSM vs. non-SSM states was an unworkable state of affairs.

                  2. You don’t even need to take it to CCW. Just owning a gun (and having a license for it) should be guaranteed by the 2nd Amendment if the right to marriage (and SSM) can be found in the 14th. However, states have varying degrees of gun ownership laws.

              2. Sounds like something that should be brought to the attention of the Supreme Court.

              3. but existing hetero marriage already enjoy full faith & credit. it’s hard to say one type of marriage will be recognized and another isn’t.

                For example, 100 years ago in Pa people under 21 who wanted to marry had to get their parents’ written permission. or, they could take the train to Maryland, where there was no minimum age for consent, and be back in the afternoon, a married couple. Nothing Pa could do about it.

            2. I see this as a precedent to have other licenses cross state boundaries. Like a C&C license. Oh, how the progtards will writhe in agony should that come to pass. Which it won’t with the current cunt court.

        2. As opposed to every other day?

      3. I’m with you that there will be bad consequences. But how is this the fault of Libertarians? We aren’t in power. Are you arguing that the ruling would have been different if Libertarians had opposed it?

        1. It is not that it is their fault, it is that in their support of gay marriage, they showed they really don’t consider those consequences that bad. If they did, they wouldn’t have supported gay marriage.

          1. Let me ask you a simple question – why do you think it is not possible to have gay marriage and to not mandate anyone’s support. It seems to me that you’re taking statism as a given and assuming all decisions have to be around which variety of statism one chooses.

            1. This decision is a 10A violation and is horrific on that basis alone.

          2. LOL Libertarians claim even though they knew this was going to happen it is not their fault.

            Sorry, I took that as meaning that you see it as the fault of Libertarians.

      4. Cat and Reason (particularly Reason) are hostile to religious liberty. Kinda like their progressive, hippy brethren, always siding with the ‘little guy”. Religion is seen as coercive.

        And I am an apatheist who finds Reason to be appallingly anti-faith.

        1. I’m not a huge fan of evangelical solons, but given a choice of them or the Progressive Orthodox assholes, I’ll truck with the evangelicals any day.

          1. ‘SoCons’, not solons.

      5. Libertarians don’t care about religious liberty and can’t be counted on to defend it.

        What a load of shit!

        I think religion is idiotic…but I’ll fight to the death for your right to practice it.

        It’s called having principles, John.

        1. You think rights matter unless sacrificing them his necessary to get gay marriage

          Take your rationalizations elsewhere Frank. We are all full up on self justifying bullshit today.

          1. So you’re calling special tax exemptions for the religious a “right”, now? Well. That’s a thing, I guess.

            1. As long as we have this broken tax code it is. Have you even considered the consequences of removing the tax exemption from religious organizations? You’re not going to reduce the deficit. It will only enable massive short term growth of the leviathan. It will also cripple the good charitable work these organizations do. Creating further need. Thus further enabling progressive run government.

              And just in case you try to peg me as a religious zealot, I’m not. I am agnostic for the most part.

          2. You think rights matter unless sacrificing them his necessary to get gay marriage

            Non sequitur.

            There are solutions to the cake baker problem that don’t involve discriminating against gays, and are completely moral. No one’s rights are violated. You are just unwilling to embrace such solutions. I hope I’m not right, but I believe it’s because you are a bigot and like discriminating against homos. But that’s what all the evidence you’ve presented in support of discrimination points to.

            There is no catch 22. Allowing homos the liberty to marry doesn’t mean you gotta make a gay cake. But you are being a typical fucking lawyer building bad law on top of already bad law. GET RID OF THE BAD LAW and you will have no need to discriminate against gays. (But that’s not what you really want, is it?)

            The CRA is the enemy of liberty, not homosexuals.

            1. A better argument would be that the marriage ruling doesn’t necessarily lead to the outcomes John says. The ruling doesn’t add sexual orientation as a protected class to the state or federal CRA’s. The persecuted bakers were being persecuted before the ruling based on a completely different set of laws. The effect of the ruling will be primarily contained to the intersection of the federal government and religious institutions, which is mostly taxation and government contracts.

              In terms of balancing support for two presumably equally bad laws, I don’t think there’s any doubt which side Reason and the vast majority of the commentariat fall on. If the ruling expressly called for the jailing of preachers and forfeiture of their assets, the amount of fucks you would give would be close to nil. There’s nothing wrong with that per se, but you’re being extremely disingenuous if you claim otherwise. Thankfully, the ruling does not expressly call for those things.

              1. A better argument would be that the marriage ruling doesn’t necessarily lead to the outcomes John says.

                That argument has been made many times. John says I’m wrong and wouldn’t understand because I’m not a lawyer and apparently I’m too stupid for him to explain it to me without having paid tens of thousands of dollars for the secret decoder ring that allows understanding of written words.

                If the ruling expressly called for the jailing of preachers and forfeiture of their assets, the amount of fucks you would give would be close to nil.

                Respectfully, that’s bullshit. And I gotta say, I’m a little put out that you think that little of me. Telling private citizens who they must associate with flies in the face of every libertarian principle there is.

                Pretty sure it was homosexuals who actually filed complaints and lawsuits based on the state-level CRA’s where that has been an issue (sexual orientation is still not protected by the federal CRA).

                And those homosexuals are equally contemptuous as those who would prevent gays from marrying. This isn’t about choosing sides. It’s about applying principle.

              2. now the complaints will be
                1. they refused to marry me
                2. they refused to serve me because I’m already married

            2. Also:

              The CRA is the enemy of liberty, not homosexuals.

              The CRA has no agency. Pretty sure it was homosexuals who actually filed complaints and lawsuits based on the state-level CRA’s where that has been an issue (sexual orientation is still not protected by the federal CRA). Doesn’t mean *all* homosexual are the enemy of liberty, but at least a few are.

            3. I’m no fan of gay marriage, but I agree. Make the plaintiffs prove harm greater than merely being offended by someone. If there’s no substantial burden to getting their cake, photo, whatever, there’s no harm, case dismissed.

              1. The harm is that the prog gays can’t ahove their beliefs down the throat of someone that they know doesn’t share that with them. And that is the point of the state – use force to make others pay for and do things with which they disagree but you support.

        2. “I think religion is idiotic…but I’ll fight to the death for your right to practice it.”

          LOL.

          I guess it is a good thing you weren’t old enough to buy a gun back then, otherwise you might have gone all Tom Cruise to whoever was Bob Jones U’s George C. Scott.

          Or by “practice it” do you really mean “practice it the way I think you should practice it?”

    2. I think, regardless of the ultimate outcome, the newly empowered gay activists are going to be more aggressive in pursuit of their enemies, and will have more “process-as-punishment” options in their toolkits as a result of this.

      Historically when the long persecuted finally get a modicum of power they always persecute in kind to those that kept them down. I think it’s a shameful, base, human quality; I do think the cycle can be broken but not today, not on this issue. The union of atheists, SJW, LGBT, ethnic minorities, will respond in kind against the ruling class in America: whitey and religion (big business is basically untouchable); in the end it all amounts to same shit different day for humanity.

  8. Can’t we all agree to come together and hate Scalia in our own way?

    1. I’m ashamed to be an Italian American today.

      1. Just today?

        1. Well, I have really nice hair. On good hair days, I’m thankful.

    2. Well, we can be happy at the results, but to be honest, Kennedy’s opinion is built on a lot of fluff.

  9. It’s inevitable. I’m glad to see gay marriage legalized, but there’s an ever-present rule with progtards: Give them an inch and they go from zero to full derp immediately.

    They’ll be crying for Christian churches to be labeled “hate groups” by the end of the weekend.

    1. Yes they will. And what are Libertarians going to do about it? I bet they stand by and do nothing. The people who go to those churches are unfashionable. They are in the words of Postrel “unglamorous”. So why worry if their rights are taken?

      1. “Justice Samuel Alito cited Bob Jones University vs. the United States, a 1983 decision allowing the federal government to strip a Christian university of its tax-exempt status for discriminating against interracial couples.”

        Is this the “right” you’re speaking of? The right to tax-exempt status for your religious university or school?

        Basically, you’re angry that schools receiving government privileges won’t continue to receive those privileges if they refuse to stop discriminating. I’m terribly upset by that news. You’re right: libertarians just don’t give a shit about your “religious liberty.”

        1. Some religions object to homosexuality. That is their right, or at least it was. Now they can’t do that. Good little fascists like you think it is great. But be sure to call anyone who thinks this might be a bad idea the RACIST. It is how fascists like you roll

          1. This article concerns the tax treatment of organizations (specifically, schools) who receive tax-exempt status. Religious schools that practice discrimination against homosexuals might one day lose their tax-exempt status if they don’t change.

            This isn’t “fascist.” You’re arguing that your religion is so special that it deserves to be given special consideration in the tax code above and beyond what a normal organization of non-religious people would receive.

            This is a government PRIVILEGE, not a government right.

            I know some religions object to homosexuality and I have absolutely no interest in policing them for their bigotry. I also don’t object to private business and private schools discriminating based on any reason now matter how much I may find it abhorrent. My objection is that you’re conflating religious *liberty* with government privilege for religion and they are not, not even a little, the same.

            1. This is a government PRIVILEGE, not a government right.

              So, any “privilege” that the government conveys can be denied on any basis? Is that the argument here?

              You realize that having a driver’s license is regarded, legally, as a privilege, yes?

              You sure you want to say that, as long as we call it a privilege, there are no constitutional implications to how the government doles out that privilege? That you would have no principled objection to the government saying “We aren’t going to extend the privilege of driving to women? Or to Muslims? Etc.?”

              1. I’m actually arguing the opposite.

                There are constitutional implications whenever the government acts. Like in this case, the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause.

                I know subtlety and fine distinctions probably aren’t your wheelhouse, but I made the case that the government shouldn’t extend special privileges to discriminatory organizations, that it has no business discriminating or financially endorsing discrimination or privileging discrimination in its laws. That would be perfectly in keeping with constitutional principles.

                The government also shouldn’t be using the tax code to encourage and discourage certain behaviors. What are the constitutional principles behind extending special privileges to religious organizations in the tax code?

                1. they’re a non-profit doing charitable work that otherwise the govt would have to provide, and because they’re govt, they’d do a worse job of it

                  non-profit usually equals no tax

            2. The same can be said for most marriage benefits. Spousal benefits aren’t a right. Tax brackets aren’t a right.

              1. Agreed. My complaint goes well beyond religious privilege.

                1. And yet that is exactly what you got in this ruling.

                  1. No, we got a statement from the Feds that they’ll treat homosexual couples the same as heterosexual couples. If they take away every last granted privilege to married couples, and do it equally, this is not an issue.

            3. “This isn’t “fascist.” You’re arguing that your religion is so special that it deserves to be given special consideration in the tax code above and beyond what a normal organization of non-religious people would receive.”

              Well, there is the whole separation of church and state thing. That’s why they are tax-exempt in the first place. Not because they are special, but because the Founders feared the establishment of state religion, like what happened with the Church of England, which further empowered King Henry.

        2. I don’t think that’s what John is saying, but I won’t speak for him.

          What I will speak to is what many others are saying in that this game of tolerance is a two way street, and I have ZERO reason to believe that the left is prepared to tolerate businesses and religious organizations refusing to be involved in Gay marriage ceremonies.

          The left is not built to behave in moderation or tolerance. The entire progressive foundation is built on fascist statism.

          1. Of course they’re not. They do not draw the distinction that libertarians do between government discrimination and private discrimination. But since I do, I don’t feel even a little bad saying that organizations that receive government-protected status aren’t entitled to those privileges in the tax code or anywhere else. I don’t think they should be taxed, but it’s not because they’re a house of god. They shouldn’t be taxed because nobody should. Tax-exempt status made special for religion is not a religious liberty issue; it’s an issue of the tax code being used to manipulate the choices of individuals and reflect the moral worldviews of the people who write the code.

            1. I would agree with you about tax-exempt organizations in that I don’t believe one religious organization should be favored for said status over another, and I sure as shit don’t trust the IRS to grant said status equitably.

              But you and I both know that this ruling is going to open up a flurry of lawsuits over private businesses refusing to provide services for same sex marriages.

              That actually started already, but it’s about to get WAYYYYYY worse now that we have “achieved equality in the eyes of the law”.

              1. Of course, there will be lawsuits. Death, taxes, lawsuits.

                But I just can’t support a ban on gay marriage just because there will be lawsuits. Gay marriage is a liberty issue fundamentally, even if assholes in the world think the government has an obligation to enforce state-sanctioned morality on private actors.

                1. Gay marriage is a liberty issue fundamentally, even if assholes in the world think the government has an obligation to enforce state-sanctioned morality on private actors.

                  Someone proposes a new amendment outlawing entitlements. It also requires that we shoot one person. Do you support it? It is expanding liberty to the tunes of millions of lives a year at the cost of just one. Let’s make it less inflammatory. We don’t shoot the person, we just bankrupt them. Is it worth it?

                2. Gay marriage is a liberty issue fundamentally, even if assholes in the world think the government has an obligation to enforce state-sanctioned morality on private actors.

                  It’s a balancing act with the CRA in place. You can’t just wave away the inherent consequences that come from today’s decision plus the CRA. This ruling on gay marriage will merely shift the liberty from one group to another… no liberty has been gained, only shifted.

            2. Tax-exempt status made special for religion is not a religious liberty issue; it’s an issue of the tax code being used to manipulate the choices of individuals and reflect the moral worldviews of the people who write the code.

              And just what do you think marriage grants you?

              1. I’m not married, so marriage is granting me nothing.

                I think you’re trying to out some sort of hypocrisy in me, like I support marriage and child benefits in the tax code, but I don’t support religious ones. The opposite is true. I oppose both.

                1. Being a pedant and failing to understand idiom really strengthens your case. Tell me again exactly what rights SSM now has that it didn’t before.

        3. And…some candor finally emerges from behind the fog of words.

          Yes, just as the Obama attorney knows, religious schools and other nonprofits will lose their tax exemption if they don’t recognize gay marriage.

          You talk about “subsidies,” as if it isn’t a problem for freedom-lovers that the government uses subsidies to promote activities it likes and punish activities it doesn’t like.

          (And this assumes that declining to slap huge taxes on someone isn’t a “subsidy”)

          And if the Bob Jones decision is anything to go by, the IRS is entitled to raise taxes of nonprofit institutions, without approval from Congress, because the IRS doesn’t think a nonprofit organization is social-justice-y enough.

          This is the Libertarian Moment!

          1. *is* a subsidy

          2. The government shouldn’t use the tax code – good or bad – to encourage certain behavior. I don’t think churches should be paying taxes, but I also don’t think I should be paying taxes.

            1. I don’t think churches should be paying taxes, but I also don’t think I should be paying taxes.

              The latent question is: do you support liberty (for some) or equality (for all)? Do you find maintaining the status quo more offensive than imposing greater taxes on churches?

              1. Yes, that is the key question that everyone is answering whether they realize it or not. A corollary would be: do you support the expansion of liberty for some if it costs any liberty for others.

            2. kbolino –

              That’s actually a good question.

              There are competing principles here. The liberty to not pay involuntary taxes. Government coercion of human choice through the tax code. Equal protection and non-discrimination under the law.

              I don’t believe churches should have to pay taxes, and so I am reluctant to withdraw tax-exempt status for that reason. But in principle, I object that churches are treated favorably under the law in the tax code. I also object to the notion that rejecting a privileged tax status to a discriminatory organization somehow constitutes a violation of religious liberty. (Please.)

              As a pragmatic matter, though, I think taxes would be much less popular if married people, people with children, and religious organizations didn’t receive so much tax shielding. These tax shields create weak public support for reform of the tax code.

              Really, I’m arguing that involuntary taxes shouldn’t exist, but I am making the other point that the tax code isn’t just economically devastating, but that it’s also a form of social control through the endorsement of certain behaviors and choices.

              1. I also object to the notion that rejecting a privileged tax status to a discriminatory organization somehow constitutes a violation of religious liberty. (Please.)

                I am starting to come to the conclusion that throwing an adjective in front of “liberty” is just as antithetical to the true meaning of the word as throwing an adjective in front of “justice”. Let’s concern ourselves with liberty and avoid the focus on specific forms.

                Really, I’m arguing that involuntary taxes shouldn’t exist, but I am making the other point that the tax code isn’t just economically devastating, but that it’s also a form of social control through the endorsement of certain behaviors and choices.

                I would say that, unless we are talking about refundable tax credits or similar mechanisms that can return more money than was ever paid (i.e., subsidies not deductions), then the encouragement flows the other direction. It is not that the government is encouraging certain behaviors (per se), it is that the government is discouraging other behaviors. This might not seem like a meaningful distinction to you, but if you understand that “not taking” and “giving” are distinct concepts then you should be able to understand this as well.

                Yet the latent question remains unanswered; given the choice between keeping the status quo and imposing taxes on churches, which would you choose? Your “reluctance” is weaselly.

                1. I can’t speak for Trevor, but I would impose taxes on churches. Actually, I would remove tax-exempt status from everyone. People have very little incentive to protest something that doesn’t hurt them personally.

                  1. I can’t speak for Trevor, but I would impose taxes on churches. Actually, I would remove tax-exempt status from everyone. People have very little incentive to protest something that doesn’t hurt them personally.

                    You understand that most narrowly tailored exemptions came about because specific groups protested, right? What kind of precedent do you think it would set to say that people can be penalized because they failed to vote the “right” way?

      2. I will speak up for religious liberty. I always have. It won’t make a damn bit of difference, but I suppose if the churches lose it will still be my fucking fault, eh?

        1. Same here.

      3. Yes they will. And what are Libertarians going to do about it?

        Cato may file amici curiae briefs and IJ may represent some of the people harmed. I’m not really sure what more you might expect, since that is about as much as libertarians ever contribute to these things.

        1. And, of course, Reason will write articles (mostly) in defense of freedom.

      4. True. I hear constant bitching and whining here. What I have never seen is a plan of action to make ANYTHING happen. And let’s face it, things are going down the tubes at an accelerating rate. It is likely going to take drastic action to fix things. And I don’t see most of the people here willing to get their hands dirty to make it happen.

  10. The best remedy for a problem created by government is additional government intervention.

  11. Fucking libertarians.
    They ruin everything. They should be rounded up and given the Ludovico Treatment.

  12. Seems to me that the main concern is lettin’ them nasty gay folks into married student housing (sarcasm, people; unclench!).

    The obvious solution for the school is to no longer married student housing to anyone at all.

    1. I agree. I went to a branch campus of Pitt that had dorms, lodges and townhouses. I don’t believe there were any specific “married” housing. The townhouses were much like those off campus, and I believe had three bedrooms, room for six people. If two of the people in one room were sleeping in one bed instead of two, who would care as long as they are paying their rent?

  13. It was obvious from the beginning that calling SSM a civil right was to be used as a weapon for aggressively initiating force through lawsuits against those who commit the thoughtcrime of disagreeing.

    It appears that libertarians who support SSM don’t really give a shit about the NAP, as long as the aggression is applied to religious organizations and other people they don’t like.

    Principals once again trump principles. Only this time it’s the cocktail-party libertarians who are playing that disingenuous game.

    1. I don’t get where all this libertarian hate is coming from today. I, as well as most people on this site that I’ve encountered, have been consistently pro-SSM and pro-religious liberty. We were among the most vocal in support of Indiana’s religious freedom law.

      1. The fact that there needs to be a special law to protect certain organizations from aggression by SSM thought police says it all.

      2. I, as well as most people on this site that I’ve encountered, have been consistently pro-SSM and pro-religious liberty.

        I am, too. My disappointment has been with people who refuse to understand that going to the courts to get SSM imposed on states was going to have other, completely foreseeable consequences that were going to be anti-liberty.

        You were warned, and you went ahead anyway. It does you no good to say “But I didn’t want that!” You knew you were going to get that, but you went right ahead. Own it, at least.

        Stand up and say “Yeah, it sucks that businesses are being closed, people are being fined, that freedom of association and contract and even religious freedom has been damaged because I got exactly what I wanted on gay marriage, but it was worth it.”

        1. ^This*this

      3. Agreed. Overall, it has been a very depressing month on Reason.

    2. The tax code shouldn’t reflect an endorsement or a rejection of religion. Special status in the tax code for god is ridiculously on its face. It’s not an initiation of force to end government privilege.

      Ideally, the government would take itself out of marriage, as it doesn’t have the right to regulate this choice at all (in my view, anyway). But if the licensing isn’t going away, then why shouldn’t homosexuals have this ability, too?

      Bans on homosexual marriage are a form of government force, just like mandating a private school or business to admit or serve homosexuals would be wrong. Libertarians make this distinction; the left doesn’t.

      1. ridiculous*

      2. The vast majority of churches are charitable organizations that do great good in their communities and around the world, which is why I support their tax exempt status. And that’s coming from an atheist (not to be confused with anti-religionists who give atheists a bad name).

        1. Well I would say many of them do what they think is good, but that doesn’t make them any worse than nonreligious “charities” and other “nonprofits”.

          1. When I was homeless, the government wouldn’t do shit for me because I was working two jobs trying to save money for a place to live. They won’t help anyone who refuses to be completely dependent upon them. Meanwhile churches were kind enough to provide me with food to eat.

            1. I didn’t mean to discredit legitimate charities, and I sure as shit would never uphold the government as some kind of charity, but there are lots of churches and religious groups whose work at home and abroad is of dubious benefit and often outright harmful (from a humanistic perspective, anyway).

              1. So let’s punish them all and subject the to Obama’s taxes?

        2. The vast majority of churches are charitable organizations that do great good in their communities and around the world

          Churches like to pretend that. But in reality, they are no different from other “charitable” organizations and non-profits: they have become rent seekers, for the benefit of the people controlling those organizations.

          Tax exempt status shouldn’t exist. With tax exempt status, the government gets into the business of deciding that this activity is socially more valuable than that activity, and it creates massive incentives for rent seeking. If we eliminate tax exempt status, these organizations will suddenly become allies in keeping all government activity down.

      3. You realize all nonprofits are tax exempt right? Including the Reason Foundation.

        1. You realize all nonprofits are tax exempt right?

          Not really. Non-profit status is a state incorporation thing. Tax-exempt status is a federal thing. The two aren’t synonymous.

          There are non-profits that don’t qualify for tax-exempt status. Not many, but they are out there.

          1. There are non-profits that don’t qualify for tax-exempt status. Not many, but they are out there.

            I’m curious: do you know of some examples? The only things I can think of would be illegal to operate anyway.

          2. I thought “non-profit” just meant that nothing went to any shareholders or ‘owners’, but rather were plowed back into the organization; that there *can* be profits, which would certainly be taxed.

      4. The tax code shouldn’t reflect an endorsement or a rejection of religion. Special status in the tax code for god is ridiculously on its face. It’s not an initiation of force to end government privilege.

        Except it is. You’re laboring under the delusion that church’s tax exempt status is a “gift” or privilege from the government. It isn’t. It’s there because, if the government can tax something, it can control it. Making churches taxable institutions means the government now controls them. Hell, the very discussion we’re having centers around the question of whether the government can penalize churches for having ungood opinions.

        1. Except it is. You’re laboring under the delusion that church’s tax exempt status is a “gift” or privilege from the government. It isn’t. It’s there because, if the government can tax something, it can control it. Making churches taxable institutions means the government now controls them.

          Tax exempt status isn’t about government going in and micromanaging a church’s affairs, it is mainly about people being able to donate money and take it off their income tax. How does that “control” churches?

          Tax exempt status exists for organizations that provide a benefit to society as a whole. Churches don’t. They should never have gotten tax exempt status in the first place, and the sooner they lose it, the better for everybody. Maybe they will then finally unanimously join us and call for a general lowering of taxes and decrease in government regulations, instead of pushing their social engineering agendas.

    3. Re: sarcasmic,

      It appears that libertarians who support SSM don’t really give a shit about the NAP, as long as the aggression is applied to religious organizations and other people they don’t like.

      It may be the case for libertarians who are anti-religious but I see this ruling in a different light: The SCOTUS decision was a step forward for personal liberty, and any intention of using this decision to FORCE private parties to provide is a violation of the NAP.

      In one instance, I celebrate. In the other, I will vehemently condemn and fight actions that purport to trample on another person’s property. The act of marrying (i.e. entering into an agreement) is a fundamental right that is corollary to the right to Freely Associate. However, a marriage ceremony is NOT a right; it is a service provided by someone else.

      1. any intention of using this decision to FORCE private parties to provide is a violation of the NAP.

        And totally foreseeable.

      2. [In one instance, I celebrate. In the other, I will vehemently condemn ]…yadda

        This is as pathetically amusing as if Dr. Kevorkian had manufactured a jig in which the depressed fuck could wrap his fingies around a revolver pointed at his head, assisted him in positioning his fingie, and applied a bit of pressure to his elbow.

        “I celebrate his freedom to end his sordid life but I’m not responsible for all that shit on the wall!”

        1. Re: Harvard,

          This is as pathetically amusing as if Dr. Kevorkian had manufactured a jig in which the depressed fuck could wrap his fingies around a revolver pointed at his head, assisted him in positioning his fingie, and applied a bit of pressure to his elbow.

          Grow up, H.

          We’re talking about people’s actions against others. If Kevorkian had limited himself to inventing suicide machines, he would not be committing an act of aggression against anybody.

          1. Bullshit OM, as much as growing up we’re talking about foreseeable consequences.

            God or mammon Mex, what’s it going to be? He told us there would be days like this and it wasn’t going to be easy.

      3. The SCOTUS decision was a step forward for personal liberty

        Science, RC, really? Benefits/recognition =/= Liberty.

      4. It may be the case for libertarians who are anti-religious but I see this ruling in a different light: The SCOTUS decision was a step forward for personal liberty

        The SCOTUS decision is irrelevant for personal liberty. It changes one set of coercive government rules into a different set of coercive government rules. It’s mostly is concerned about whether large amounts of government benefits, financed by coercive taxes, are handed to one subset of people or another.

        Having said that, given that I think organized religion is evil, I think if they get screwed by government coercion like everybody else, that’s a good thing. Too long have they been sitting on the sidelines thumbing their noses at everybody else, pretending to be morally superior.

      5. and any intention of using this decision to FORCE private parties to provide is a violation of the NAP

        Father: Hey, kid, you get ice cream if you clean up your room.

        Son: I don’t wanna go clean up my room.

        Father: Then you don’t get ice cream.

        Son: You are being aggressive to me, you evil violator of the NAP! [cries]

    4. It appears that libertarians who support SSM don’t really give a shit about the NAP, as long as the aggression is applied to religious organizations and other people they don’t like.

      The “aggression” you are talking about here is taxation. Libertarians didn’t create that aggression and they don’t support it. However, selectively exempting rent seekers like churches and their donors from that aggression isn’t “aggression”, it’s support of rent seeking.

      Principals once again trump principles.

      And it is high time that we end the special treatment certain politically powerful “principals” (churches) receive.

      I’m for ending all tax exempt status. But I certainly believe that churches shouldn’t be treated differently from other non-profits by not having to comply with the law of the land, including non-discrimination and worker protection laws.

  14. How long should you wait before seeking help if your hateboner won’t go away?
    Inquiring minds, et c.

  15. Ten bucks says this is it for gay rights. Of course there will be progs pushing for more acceptance-by-compulsion, but most of the foot soldiers in this movement have what they want. The more grandiose fears going around will not bear fruit, just as the other fears of the week about Confederate memorials being torn down will not come to pass.

    …But this is obvious, I guess.

    1. Of course there will be progs pushing for more acceptance-by-compulsion, but most of the foot soldiers in this movement have what they want.

      You’re more optimistic than I am.

      Plus, what makes you think that a handful of progs pushing acceptance by compulsion aren’t more than enough?

      1. It takes one person to bring a lawsuit and five robed morons to agree with it. Numbers are not an obstacle.

    2. Honestly, most of the foot-soldiers packed up and went home after Lawrence v. Texas. We wanted to fuck without going to jail. After that, a lot of the other stuff (visitation, wills, etc.) was already gaining greater cultural acceptance and really didn’t have anything to do with marriage.

      1. Clarification: most of the gay foot soldiers packed up and went home. The leftists, ever noble in their unending crusade, helpfully picked up the mantle and continued soldiering on in our name.

      2. Fair point, my own experience comports with that. Still, gay marriage is a simple, unifying issue that had a certain swell of support. The gay folk I’ve known the past 10 years have not been activists, but most still had some passion about it. Marriage is a pretty universal issue, even for those who don’t think they want to get married. Recognition by a religious university is a limited issue that few people think or care much about.

        And hopefully, with this out of the way, the appeal of signaling how OK you are with gays will lose some of its luster.

        1. And hopefully, with this out of the way, the appeal of signaling how OK you are with gays will lose some of its luster.

          It’s a small consolation. I don’t know if this will be more like Brown or Roe in terms of how people treat it (i.e. settled law widely accepted vs still a matter of active debate), though.

    3. but most of the foot soldiers in this movement have what they want.

      I really do not think that this is true. There is at least another 20 years of an ever leftward shift of the gay rights movement.

      It has been my personal experience that even in the last 15 years of great advancement in gay rights and acceptance, that most gay men and women have become more progressive.

  16. Writing for the majority, Anthony Kennedy offered assurances that people of faith would still be allowed “to advocate with utmost, sincere conviction that, by divine precepts, same-sex marriage should not be condoned.”

    Unfortunately this is nothing more than a meaningless affirmation. The important question left unanswered is if this decision will serve as the justification for further intrusions on individual’s Property Rights by the state under the guise of protecting marriage rights. What will the government do now concerning the right of gays to marry? Will it now utilize the full force of government to compel others to provide?

    The confusion that this issue is generating stems from a misunderstanding of the nature of rights. Positivists (and Marxians) believe that marriage is a right bestowed by the state to us mere mortals. Those of us who subscribe to Natural Law believe the right of marriage is an extension of our right to contract, which is a negative right (the negative connotation pertaining to the responsibility each of us has of not committing acts that violate these rights, not to something we’re supposed to provide.)

    1. OM-
      “Positivists (and Marxians) believe that marriage is a right bestowed by the state to us mere mortals.”

      From Roberts’ dissenting opinion:

      “Federal courts are blunt instruments when it comes to creating rights.”

      So apparently Roberts has concluded that beyond bestowing, the SCOTUS creates rights, however bluntly.

  17. This article is useless and the title is misleading. You haven’t provided any new information on what is going to happen for religious groups.

    1. I agree. It posits the question but it is clear the author has NO clue what will happen either.

  18. I’m a gay marriage supporter and this decision really pisses me off. It goes way to far in specifically defining a state institution and even further in declaring a new unenumerated right. In another more important way, however, it didn’t go nearly far enough.

    In my opinion, the most libertarian decision possible would be the simple recognition that all human beings must be treated equally as humans in every law in the US. This would instantly turn every state law stating that “marriage is between a man and a woman” into “marriage is between a human and a human.” Any libertarian that disagrees with that concept needs to change their goddamn label. (churches can still do whatever they want)

    The problem (feature!) with a decision of that nature is that it would immediately nullify all title IX, equal pay, and affirmative action legislation nationwide. If all humans are just humans, the government needs to get out of the discrimination business.

    1. No, the most libertarian thing possible is for government to be untangled from marriage altogether. Let it be a private function. Any social contract can be handled by just that. A contract.

      1. The government can still provide a template or package of legal rights that anyone can sign with anyone else. There was no reason we couldn’t just say gays can only have a Civil Union, but that it would involve the same rights, privileges, and obligations given to or incurred by people in a Marriage (legal). No. That was not enough. It was absolutely necessary to use the same word even. However, I suspect a state *can* have something called a Civil Union (or anything else) like this and it would still be considered “marriage” for legal purposes.

  19. “In the Bob Jones case, the Court held that a college was not entitled to tax?exempt status if it opposed interracial marriage or interracial dating. So would the same apply to a university or a college if it opposed same?-sex marriage?” he asked.

    When are people going to figure out it’s the CRA that’s evil and not teh gheyz?

    You are making bad law based upon bad law.

    What? You painted yourself into a corner? No shit?!

    1. oh yeah! i forgot to mention that a ruling stating that for legislative purposes, “humans are all equal humans”, would also eviscerate the CSA.

      damn, they missed an opportunity to be real heroes

      1. *CRA dammint

        1. Do they have a flag too?

          1. Perhaps if it is determined that the rainbow flag representa discrimination similar to the confederate flag then it too would be banned in public…

        2. Nice malapropism – I was scanning through comments and thought “why the heck are we talking about Community Supported Agriculture” in this stream?

    2. When are you going to admit that this just extended its reach? That pretty much was the whole point! You’re willing to make that trade off. Just admit it.

      1. When are you going to admit that you are willing to discriminate to not expand government?

        Doing something immoral to accomplish something moral isn’t right. Especially when there is a simple alternative, where you don’t discriminate to stop the expansion. This entire argument is moot without the existence of the CRA. The CRA is the enemy. Fight the fucking enemy.

        That’s why I’m ALWAYS suspicious of anyone making this argument. I suspect they use it because they are actually bigots who want discrimination against homosexuals to continue.

        Treat homos like everyone else and do away with protected classes. Both those solutions/actions are moral. AND it ensures Religious cake bakers don’t need to bake cakes for people they disapprove of.

        AND I’ll gladly embrace a solution that takes ALL government out of marriage.

        I’m trading nothing. I’m applying libertarian principle to BOTH issues and coming up with a moral solution where no one is discriminated against.

        1. If you would gladly embrace a solution that takes all government out of marriage then do so. Don’t sit here and celebrate the government expanding even further into an area they have no business in thats going to end up hurting a lot of people.

          The government not recognizing your marriage doesn’t hurt you, I don’t give a fuck what the government thinks of my marriage it’s none of their business. But the government suing people out of business because they won’t bake a cake that does hurt people. That really hurts people, and shame on you for being willing to make that trade.

          1. I’m NOT celebrating the government expanding. I’m celebrating equal protection under the law for gay people. Why aren’t you?

            On the completely separate issues of the CRA and government involvement in marriage we are in complete agreement.

            Repeal the CRA!
            Get government out of marriage!

            1. I’m NOT celebrating the government expanding. I’m celebrating equal protection under the law for gay people. Why aren’t you?

              On the completely separate issues of the CRA and government involvement in marriage we are in complete agreement.

              To me, it certainly doesn’t look completely separate. It looks like the government moving the definition of the poverty line. Fuck if that doesn’t mean that more people get welfare benefits!

            2. I’m NOT celebrating the government expanding. I’m celebrating equal protection under the law for gay people. Why aren’t you?

              On the completely separate issues of the CRA and government involvement in marriage we are in complete agreement.

              To me, it certainly doesn’t look completely separate. It looks like the government moving the definition of the poverty line. Fuck if that doesn’t mean that more people get welfare benefits!

              1. To be clear… I think that — assuming that marriage MUST be administered by the State — gay marriages should be recognized by the State. However, I don’t pretend to think this is anything better than a Pyrrhic victory.

                A law cannot be judged outside the context of its application. Sure, this decision may be great for equality when viewed in a vacuum. In reality, the CRA mixes with this decision like vinegar and bleach.

            3. I’m not celebrating because I know the government is going to hurt a lot of fucking people over this. They are going to hurt people, people are going to lose their businesses. I’m not happy when I know people are about to be so completely fucked over.

              How could any moral decent person celebrate knowing that? Unless of course they really didn’t give a fuck about the people that are going to be hurt.

            4. I am willing to discriminate (and by discriminate I mean deny someone positive rights) to not expand government. Your turn.

              Bullshit. You support a decision that grants some liberties and takes away others. Yes, you’re fine with eliminating the CRA but in the meantime you’re OK with any damage being done with it. That is the trade off you’re willing to make. I’m always suspicious of people willing to make that trade because history has shown that we never get a rollback of the entitlement state.

              1. So you’re fine giving positive rights to some but not all? So you’d be fine with the government saying Fd’A has the right to a trial by jury of his peers, but NAS doesn’t because Fd’A is pink and NAS is purple?

                You support a decision that grants some liberties and takes away others.

                NO! THAT IS COMPLETELY FALSE! This decision does not take rights away from others (aside from the money stolen to provide the positive rights)…THE CRA takes the rights away from the cake bakers, NOT gay marriage.

                Cause and effect…how does it work?

                but in the meantime you’re OK with any damage being done with it.

                That’s a false statement as well. I’m not okay with it. It too is an abomination. But I’m certainly not willing to oppress people so the government won’t build upon immoral legislation. ESPECIALLY when there is a legitimate moral alternative.

                1. No, I’m fine with not EXPANDING positive rights. You want equality even at the expense of positive rights.

                  NO! THAT IS COMPLETELY FALSE! This decision does not take rights away from others (aside from the money stolen to provide the positive rights)…

                  Yeah, about that…

                  THE CRA takes the rights away from the cake bakers, NOT gay marriage.

                  It wasn’t the gun that killed him, it was the bullet!

                  That’s a false statement as well. I’m not okay with it.

                  It comes with it. You cannot separate the two today and since the decision was made in today’s environment, you get it for free. If you accept this, embrace it, then you have to accept everything that comes with it. I accept that ice cream tastes good, but I reject the calories! Sticking your fingers in your ears doesn’t change the real consequences.

                  I’ll ask the question I posed in another thread. You obviously oppose the CRA and entitlements. Would you accept dismantling it one protected class at a time as long as I promise to ultimately remove it for everyone? Or is equality so precious that you would not permit even a temporary inequality to evolve?

                  1. It comes with it.

                    Horseshit!

                    Equality is not precious. Equal rights are. It you can’t see the difference you are being willfully obtuse.

        2. This isn’t like slavery. There was no urgency (except in the rhetoric of the far Left). SCOTUS did not get us time to thrash this out democratically. It just had to be forced.

  20. Doesn’t this mean, for certain religious organizations, that polygamy is back within five years tops!

    1. No, polygamy is misogynistic.

      And polygamists probably don’t vote Democrat, so don’t expect Justice Kennedy to be writing really shitty poetry for them anytime soon.

  21. I remember that the communists generally outlaw or limit religious practice as one of the first orders of business when they start their re-education programs.
    Independent thought outside of the narrative is a threat to the agenda.

    Things around here are shaping up eerily similar to the downfall of other countries into Marxism. Hitler took a long time to gain the Nazis the ability to oppress the masses.

    If I were gay, I would more concerned now that the FEDs can intrude on your life now via the tax man. careful what you wish for.
    What gay men do is gross. Is that racist?

    1. If I were gay, I would more concerned now that the FEDs can intrude on your life now via the tax man.

      That concern doesn’t seem to be stopping many M/F marriages.

  22. Most churches wouldn’t show a profit on their income statement each year, so they wouldn’t pay income taxes anyway. Perhaps they’d have to pay property taxes, which in many governmental entities equates to a user fee for cops, firemen, sewer, libraries, road maintenance.

    1. Not about the money, but the ‘control.’ You don’t get that?

    2. Should the church be paying for “My Two Daddies” at the local prog library?

      Many places have sewer fees instead of wrapping that service into property taxes.

      Road maintenance is typically handled thrpugh the gas tax; I’m not sure if church staff have a means to gave this removed when purchasing but churchgoers driving to and from their place of worship are paying that tax.

      We mostly agree that it is best to (almost) never call the cops.

      So this boils down to firefighters.

  23. I came into this discussion a little late, but I really don’t see how this is a net gain for liberty. We now have gained a government recognizing gay marriage, even though most Libertarians here agree that government shouldn’t be involved in marriage whatsoever, and all it cost us was religious freedom and free speech, because now the government can take away your tax exempt status if your church doesn’t support the party line.

    It might not be gulags, and firing squads, but it’s still government coercion to force religious groups to their way of thinking, and it’s wrong.

    Was the sacrifice really worth it? It’s not like gays were being sent to prison, or cops were busting up gay weddings. The gays were still free to do what they want, the government just refused to recognize it.

    I’m sorry but this will not be a win for liberty.

  24. This is part of the whole point in forcing a redefinition of marriage on the entire country, control over religious conduct in society. Religious organizations will probably not loose their tax exempt status, but they will have their power to conduct legally binding marriage ceremonies revoked. Those who desire to have a religious wedding will be forced to conduct two ceremonies to make it legally binding as well.

  25. Yup. Obama has set the standard for lefty activism in the executive branch. Even in the odd chance that a conservative occupies the oval office again, the beltway mandarin class that runs the IRS and other creepy organizations has free reign over tax exempt groups with politics they don’t like.

  26. Or, unlike what John thinks, maybe this is God’s Divine punishment to the Churches for standing idly by as government time and again ruined the good name of “marriage”. After all, good Christians in these United States decided that “marriage” was best administered by government – contrary to everything the Bible says.

    Perhaps this time of testing will prove to hammer into their heads the error in government worship; it breaks the 1st and 2nd commandments.

    1. I think you read my facebook comment this morning… it was a little lighter on the sacrilege (being that I’m Christian), but I made the same point.

      1. I don’t Facebook, but great minds and all that…

        Oh, and I’m a Christian too. I’m not sure how anything I’ve said is sacrilege. It just seems like the most likely answer. God allows us (Christians) to suffer for our bad behavior. He “scourges those he loves”.

  27. Militant homosexualist Kennedy and his 4 liberal accomplices have declared sexual license their highest priority, above all those picayune rights actually enumerated in the Constitution. Currently, they’re willing to allow (or to pretend to allow) churches to believe that homosexual marriages are against the Bible — but they show no evidence of being willing to allow anyone to act on that basis. Today, the Hodges 5 have (as leftists always do) declared war on their own citizens, or at least those who still have any respect whatsoever for traditional morals.

    Sic Semper SCOTUS.

  28. We are now living Without Rule of Law.
    This (secret laws, laws written by the supreme court, presidential Executive Orders, no accountability for federal employees) is not the form of government that the Founders gave us, and that our men and women fought and died for for over 239 years.
    The United States of America federal government is an illegitimate occupying force now in our country.

    http://christianstatesofamerica.blogspot.com/

  29. Everyone here is missing the point.
    This has been a step by step government conspiracy from the beginning.
    1. Give government control over marriage
    2. Make gay marriage legitimate
    3. Now have documents on who all the gay people are
    4. Build a camp and call it the Alternative Inclosure For Dick Sucker or A.I.D.S. For short.
    5. Round up all the gay people and put them in AIDS

    1. I have news for you; the gays are in charge. Gird your loins.

      1. Exactly. If God didn’t approve of homosexuality he would have sent a plague to kill gays.
        – Jimmy Carr

  30. This is exactly what I was worried about. In an ideal libertarian society, of course gays should have the right to marry — nobody’s business but their own.

    But we don’t live in an ideal libertarian society, and the writing has been on the wall for a long time that once gay marriage was enshrined as a fundamental right it would be wielded as a club against those who dissent.

  31. “Religious types”? Seriously?

  32. Either ‘All men are created equal…’ – or they aren’t. We either have a Bill of Rights which applies equally to all – or we do not. Whether we should have a Bill of Rights or not is a legitimate libertarian question but the decision today was consistent with one.

  33. Question: how will this affect the tax exempt status of Islamic institutions that apply Islam to gays?

    My $20 is that they won’t need to make any changes.

  34. “It will never happen” is the refrain of people who secretly want “it” to happen and will be celebrating and defending “it” when “it” does happen.

  35. One solution to the matter of tax exemptions…eliminate exemptions from income taxation by eliminating the income tax.

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  37. The most recent precedent was Hobby Lobby and contraception.

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  40. Churches should be required to perform all marriage ceremonies. Their religious beliefs do not allow them to violate another person’s civil liberties. If the church and or pastor will not conform or rehabilitate, then the pastor should be thrown in jail for contempt of court, the church’s funds, possessions should be seized and given to the LGBT community, and the couple who was refused to marry should be able to sue in civil court each and every member of the church.

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