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01/05/2015

In which Liberty Counsel's Harry Mihet defames equality activists everywhere

by Jeremy Hooper

As you've surely heard, some clerks in Florida have chosen to stop performing marriages altogether so that they won't have to marry same-sex couples. Which is perfect, according to the Liberty Counsel's Harry Mihet, who has been actively fighting for discrimination in the state. Because according to Mihet, we equality advocates are really just Screen Shot 2015-01-05 At 6.26.38 Pmout to destroy marriage anyway:

Clerks in the remaining 66 counties will issue the licenses but with a different twist in five of them.

Mihet explains: "They will stop officiating or solemnizing marriages altogether, although they cannot stop issuing licenses. So they will license homosexual marriages but they will not officiate any marriages in order to avoid being forced to officiate a homosexual marriage against their conscience."

“I believe marriage is between a man and a woman,” one clerk told a Florida newspaper. “Personally it would go against my beliefs to perform a ceremony that is other than that.”

Mihet says homosexual activists are likely very happy because the "destruction of marriage has been their goal all along," he claims.
FULL: Clerks in FL refuse to officiate homosexual weddings [ONN]

In addition to being crude and callous and defamatory to the millions of Americans (a majority, according to every credible poll) who stand in support of marriage equality, Mihet's insistence that we want "destruction" is just so childish. Only in a debate with one side that is so fundamentally broken and that so fully acts in bad faith—and has for decades—could these kind of ridiculous lines at all fly, even with fringe news outlets. Only within a movement so willing to say any and everything in order to put us on the defensive, in hopes of making their own years of rhetorical and public policy caca smell like roses, could the other team's push for *more* participation, with *no* penalties waged on current participants, be twisted into an apocalyptic act.

Besides, even if Mr. Mihet's overactive fantasies about the ulterior motives of his pro-equality neighbors did support his claims, I'm not sure how, exactly, a few clerks stamping their feet and cutting off marriages in the limited venues where their nose-thumbing holds any sway would be an act of destruction toward marriage itself. So they will no longer fulfill their duties? Okay. Whatever. There are countless other officiants throughout Florida, secular and religious, who will gladly take the job. The only thing these defiant clerks are helping to destroy is the goodwill and tolerant reputations of their communities. That's a shame—but it's on them, not us.

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