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September 03, 2015

Judge Orders Non-Dissenting Deputies to Issue Gay Marriage Licenses

This is what I've been contending should be done since last night -- but along the way I heard from a lot of people on the right who are pro-gay-marriage that this is either impossible or unworkable or will cause our system of government to devolve into chaos.

And yet, that's what was done.

This was always the obvious solution -- if you think it is worthwhile, at all, to accommodate this woman's apparently-real religious objection while also finding a way to get this gay couple their Anthony Kennedy decreed license.

If you do not think that it is worth even the slightest deviation from standard procedure to make a minor tweak in order to protect someone's religious conscience, then I can see why you'd come down on this woman like a huge pile of government-coercion bricks.

A freedom-championing person should make coercion the last resort, not the goddamned first. *

And "because these are the rules!" is not a good enough answer when a different important consideration is at stake as well. Yes, "following the rules" is important, but only a moral cripple could possibly believe it's the only thing that matters, or that following the rules is an absolute in all situations.

And in fact almost no one believes that.

But people are quick to yell "We must follow All the Rules!!" without giving consideration to tweaks and work-arounds when they simply do not have sympathy for the person facing the hammer of coercion.

It's my belief that we should always try to avoid the hammer of coercion, and not just swing away "Because it's the rules!" (you wouldn't say that about someone you had sympathy for) without thought.

And that extends to people we don't necessarily have sympathy for.

And that includes this Muslim flight attendant who has been suspended for refusing to serve alcohol. I'd look for a way to accommodate her, and I wouldn't spring to the "fire the dissenter!" position.

However, I have to say: I've been thinking about this last night, and I don't see how she can be accommodated while still doing her job, because, from my observation of flight stewards, pretty much all they do once the plane is in the air is ferry drinks to passengers. I just cannot see how she can be excluded from this part of her job while still doing her job at all; unless, say, she agrees to serve almost every non-alcohol request (pillows, blankets, etc.)

And I'm not sure that would work.

It seems to me that drink service is pretty much what the flight attendants do.

But I think the company should try to think of an accommodation. If none can be conceived, then she'll have to find some other job.


* So gay marriage has gone from something that was illegal to something you can now be thrown into prison for opposing.

Do gay marriage opponents not wish to give the rest of us the slightest amount of time to evolve on this?

I can guarantee you that throwing people in jail willy-nilly is not convincing skeptics of the benevolence of the gay rights movement.



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posted by Ace at 05:27 PM

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