Did Kim Davis have right to not issue same-sex marriage licenses?
The elected County Clerk, a government official in Kentucky, refused to issue marriage licenses to those who had met all the requirements under law if they were same -sex couples. She was eventually jailed for violation of the law, and the oath of office she took to uphold the law when she was installed as the County Clerk of Courts. She says that she is following 'God's Law', and that is her legal right. No, it is not.
As a private citizen, she can advocate against same sex-marriage, she can certainly not recognize the marriage of a same sex couple, etc., as that is her right of freedom of religion in America. However, she does not own the Clerk of Court's Office, and she has no right to refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, as that is the law in the United States of America.
As an example, she was divorced at least three times, if she went to the appropriate office in the same court house, the prothonotary's office, to pick up her divorce decrees, and the prothonotary was against divorce on "religious grounds", and refused to issue to her the divorce decree, it would be against the law. Ms. Davis would be outraged.
The presidential candidates, Governor Michael Huckabee, and Senator Ted Cruz, know the Law, but used Ms. Davis to emphasize their positions against the law which grants same -sex couples the right to get married in America. They made this into a spectacle or a circus, and they both well-know the law.
How about if ALL of us decided which laws we would follow, and which ones we would not on religious grounds? We know there would be chaos. We are a nation of laws. Without laws that must be followed, we would be living in a lawless land.
This was NOT a religious persecution case. If Ms. Davis is against same-sex marriage, outside of her government job, she may say and do as she please on religious grounds, but if she breaks a law on religious grounds, she must face the consequences. Accommodations can and should be made even as an elected government official and one of her deputies can issue the marriage licenses.
But, on Friday she broke the law again, now that she is back at work, and she, on her own, altered all the licenses for same sex couples and removed her name as the elected Clerk of Courts and the name of The County, thus making the licenses The Clerk's Office was legally obligated to issue. Again, Governor Huckabee, and Senator Cruz are backing her and saying she can do what she wants on religious grounds, even though this is a violation of law and of the Federal Judge's Court Order. Frankly, Ms. Davis again would be outraged if the prothonotary in her same courthouse did this to any one of her four divorce decrees, making her Divorce decree invalid.
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