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08/21/2014

The marriage debate per anti-LGBT, pro-discrimination activist

by Jeremy Hooper

After spilling more ink pretending that the Liberty Ridge Farm owners are simply "farmers" when they are in fact business owners, and once again attempting to conserv-splain why religious people should be free to flout fairly enacted nondiscrimination laws that apply to LGBT people (an impossible carve out), Ryan Anderson, Heritage Foundation thinker and man who has admitted he thinks gay people are called to be celibate, wrote the following about this debate and its supposed break down:

Screen Shot 2014-08-21 At 9.23.46 Am
[Ryan Anderson]

Free to live how they want? Except, you know—if they want to marry their beloved under civil law. Ryan and his deeply Catholic beliefs are doing all they can to ban such marriages in both state and federal law. And as I already stated, Ryan is someone who simply doesn't believe we should be gay, which obviously informs every shred of his advocacy (even if he tries to false-witness away that reality).

Free to live how they want? Except, you know—if they want to secure a cake, flower arrangement, or other consumer good from a vendor who offers the items to straight people but not gay people. Ryan thinks it's perfectly okay for business owners to deny, embarrass, and turn away such couples simply because of who they are. And yes, such denials are because of who they are and not what Ryan claims spins:

Screen Shot 2014-08-21 At 9.32.43 Am

That "action" was simply the act of marrying while gay. If the business owners (again, they are not just "farmers" any more than Knot's Berry Farm owners are just famers) gladly serve people who marry while straight but deny couples who marry while gay, then the denial is, in fact, because of who they are. I'm not surprised that the anti-LGBT far-right refuses to own this truth, considering this movement has never owned any of the discriminatory realities that they have pushed upon us. But most people don't need to be told what situations like these are all about. It's glaringly obvious.

Fairly serving gay customers does not mean celebrating or even liking, frankly, said customers. Since when is every act of business a "celebration"? I actually know a few people who work in the wedding industry. Trust me when I say they don't even kind of like some of the Bride and Groom-zillas that come into their doors. But they do the job that they set up a shingle to do.

Look, no one is telling people like Ryan that he has to "celebrate" same-sex marriage. In fact, he's not even invited to. It's not for him. If he wants to do such harm to both the debate and the decent American taxpayers involved, then his presence is not requested at our happy celebrations of our inevitable victory. He can send a gift if he wants, but his RSVP is a pre-marked no, at least until he has a great epiphany coupled with even greater remorse.

But he will accept the reality of civil marriage that includes same-sex couples, the same way he accepts the reality (and fair accommodation) of civil marriage that includes any other kind of couple he might find objectionable. He can spend the rest of his days "tsk-tsk"-ing at us. His church can deny religious ceremonies to anyone it wants. He can crudely condemn any gay person in his life who plans his or her wedding. Even if he goes into some sort of wedding business, he can talk as much shit about the couple behind their backs as he wants (or even turn us away, if he's a good enough actor to hide the real reason). But he cannot cultivate an America where the gay dollar is less valid, as policy. That is not a "religious freedom"—it is chosen discrimination. People like Ryan have simply backed into the 'religious freedom" box in order to justify their preconceived desires.

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