Thursday, April 23, 2015

Most offensive in Jindal's NYT Op-Ed is the notion that his beliefs are under attack

Bobby Jindal
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is presumably running for President of the United States. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal authored an Op-Ed in the New York Times titled “Bobby Jindal: I’m Holding Firm Against Gay Marriage” because his is presumably running for President of the United States.

According to Jindal, regarding his own state's effort to pass an enhanced RFRA known as the Marriage and Conscience Act:
Our country was founded on the principle of religious liberty, enshrined in the Bill of Rights. Why shouldn’t an individual or business have the right to cite, in a court proceeding, religious liberty as a reason for not participating in a same-sex marriage ceremony that violates a sincerely held religious belief?
What this is all about is nullifying local anti-discrimination ordinances. These exist in Jefferson Parish, New Orleans (city and parish), Baton Rouge and Shreveport. Jindal's idea of “participating” is utter nonsense (baking a cake is not participating in anything other than the business of baking a cake). More importantly the issue should be whether an anti-discrimination ordinance creates a substantial burden on the individual or business. The proposed bill in Louisiana is extremely broadly worded by design. It basically allows anyone to refuse to serve a gay couple simply by saying that it's against their religious beliefs (whatever that means). Maybe it is against their religious beliefs or maybe they are just ignorant bigots. The distinction becomes irrelevant.

Jindal goes on to write:
The bill does not, as opponents assert, create a right to discriminate against, or generally refuse service to, gay men or lesbians. The bill does not change anything as it relates to the law in terms of discrimination suits between private parties. It merely makes our constitutional freedom so well defined that no judge can miss it.
Come on Bobby. We're not all stupid. And then he writes:
I hold the view that has been the consensus in our country for over two centuries: that marriage is between one man and one woman. Polls indicate that the American consensus is changing — but like many other believers, I will not change my faith-driven view on this matter, even if it becomes a minority opinion.
The intent is to suggest that his religious beliefs are under attack. Nobody has asked Jindal to change his “faith-driven view.” While Jindal is quick to refer to free exercise of religion per the First Amendment he seems to overlook the fact that his is trying to impose a faith-driven view on the citizens of Louisiana which would violate the establishment clause which is enshrined in the same First Amendment.

What is most offensive about this is that Jindal and others would have people believe that their religious beliefs are under attack. That simply is not the case. Jindal is free to believe that marriage is only between a man and a woman. He has every right not to enter into a same-sex marriage — nobody is forcing him otherwise. However, what Jindal is really trying to do is to impose his viewpoint on everyone else.

As much as these folks like to wave the American flag (as they thump a Bible) what they are advocating is actually quite un-American. They want everyone to think the way that they think and our founding fathers never had that in mind. Never.

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