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Today in bad advice & even worse historical comparisons

by Jeremy Hooper

StaverIn a far-right twist on ambulance chasing, anti-LGBT lawyer Mat Staver is encouraging employees who are tasked with marrying same-sex couples to simply refuse to perform the duties of their job. Staver's Liberty Counsel will represent these modern day Rosas and Martins in court, he insists:

Orlando, FL – Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver is urging people in states affected by same-sex unions to stay: “Stand your ground. Do not voluntarily resign your post when confronted with this intolerant agenda.”

Staver made these comments after several magistrates in North Carolina resigned because they refused to preside over a same-sex marriage. “I appreciate the conviction of these magistrates, but rather than resign they should remain at their post. Liberty Counsel will represent them, but once they resign there is not much we can do to help,” said Staver.

In 2004 after the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court imposed same-sex marriage on the Commonwealth, Catholic Charities ceased its adoption ministry because it refused to place children in same-sex households. “The commitment to Church teachings and conscience is commendable, but Catholic Charities should not have voluntarily ceased its adoption ministry. If the government wants to impose an intolerant agenda on people of faith and trample their religious convictions then let it happen in public for all to see. I cannot believe the American people will long tolerate an intolerant agenda,” said Staver.

“Where would the Civil Rights movement be if Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., voluntarily went home when he faced opposition? Where would we be today if Rosa Parks had voluntarily moved to the back of the bus? The quest for religious freedom was the reason American was born. We cannot voluntarily give up this unalienable right,” concluded Staver.
Stand Your Ground [Liberty Counsel]

Liberty Counsel will represent them? So what? When was the last time Liberty Counsel won anything involving LGBT rights? Representation is not the same thing as victory, actually.

The truth is that all of these folks will lose in court because civil employees can't just up and refuse to perform their jobs. Obviously. Everyone knows this, including Staver. But Staver also knows that he can build a far-right "victim" campaign around these sorts of cases, so he's surely hoping to reel one or more in to his auspices so that he can exploit the situations for his own fundraising and profile-raising purposes. It's not about an ability to actually win the case; it's about crude "culture war" opportunism.

Those who think they're going to become the next Rosa or Martin by signing up for Staver's team should know this before they utterly destroy their careers.

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