Wednesday, November 12, 2014

CBN claims that marriage equality "forced" a magistrate out of his job

logo of the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN)
According to a CBN story, Gay Marriage Ruling Forces Magistrate Out of His Job. They are referring to a magistrate in North Carolina. Before I go further, a magistrate in NC is not a lawyer. In fact they can qualify for the job with only a two-year degree. Magistrates function as low-level judicial assistants and earn, on average, about $42,000/year. CBN's Heather Sells writes:
John Kallam, who worked as a magistrate in rural Rockingham county for over a decade, is one of them.

During that time he watched the growing momentum of gay marriage closely and wondered what it might mean for him.

"I told some of my co-workers, 'if it ever gets down to that, where I'm asked to perform same-sex marriage, I'm not going to be able to do it,'" Kallam told CBN News.

Really? It is civil marriage at issue, right?  And of course this fuckwit asks couples if either participant is divorced or if they have had premarital sex. Why is it that these idiots all have bibles with the gay stuff italicized or yellow highlighted? Do some versions come that way?

The supply of morons is endless including Mr. Kallam's pastor:
For Kallam's pastor, the situation has provided a reality check.

"I tell our congregation that if they can tell a magistrate last week that you have to perform a ceremony, what's to prevent them from telling me next week I have to do it?" Pastor Steve Griffith, with Osborne Baptist Church, explained.
Needless to say, Pastor Griffith is wrong. He has First Amendment protection. Moreover, he is paid from the contributions by members of the congregation. Mr. Kallam is compensated by the taxpayers — all of the taxpayers. Mr. Kallam performs civil marriages. Pastor Griffith performs religious marriages.

And, of course, some Christianist legislator has a solution in the form of a license-to-discriminate law:
North Carolina Senate leader Phil Berger believes the state courts can accommodate workers like Kallam. He's working on legislation that would protect religious beliefs and lead the courts to change their policy.

"There's a reasonable way to deal with this," Berger told CBN News. "I think North Carolina got off on the wrong foot in terms of trying to deal with what was admittedly a very fast-moving situation where the federal courts stepped in and in essence overruled the will of better than 60 percent of the people."
No Mr. Berger. There is no “reasonable” way to allow a civil servant to discriminate on behalf of the state. If an employee of the state cannot do their job because people are Muslims, Jewish or gay or [fill in the blank] then they should find another job. What would Mr. Berger do if someone claimed that, according to his or her sincerely held religious beliefs, they would be unable to marry an interracial couple? Or a Christian to a Jew? Why, exactly, is the treatment of gay people any different? I guess that Mr. Berger also has one of those special edition bibles.

Nationwide marriage equality seems inevitable. Now we have to push-back against legislation that would permit people to discriminate. No gay couple should ever be told “we don't serve your kind here.” Never.

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