There's a certain sadness connected to the recent flaps concerning the RFRA laws enacted in Indiana and Arkansas. It has little or nothing to do with an alleged mistreatment of homosexuals, who though attempting be some sort of “protected species,” are just people whose freedom has not and will not be threatened by people of faith who choose not to participate in activity that violates their Christian beliefs. The homosexuality is not the issue. One can't tell by looking who is and is not homosexual, so entrepreneurs do business with homosexuals routinely and would even if a capital “H” were sewn on the homosexual's lapel.

The problem rises only with respect to homosexual symbols and same-sex marriage, not even, for the most part, with same-sex unions, which are recognized routinely by being awarded the same perks, both governmental and private, as traditional and legal marriage-unions. To participate in constructing homosexual symbols, such as in printing clothing, or in same-sex marriage activities, such as producing a he-and-he wedding cake, is to the Christian a violation of scripture and consequent belief-system.

In ISIS in the Middle East, a person rejects his Christianity and conforms to Islam or loses his head at the hands of Muslims but not Muslim governments. In the U.S., a person rejects his Christianity and conforms to the homosexual mandate or loses in court or in business by fiat/actions not of homosexuals but of government. In both cases, the injured actually had no rights, the former because of private operators but the latter because of the U.S. government favoring one segment of society over another.

The problem is exacerbated by involving the freedom of religion as a practicing matter and the prohibition of the freedom of religion as a practicing matter. This is a First Amendment matter disallowing the government to establish or recognize religion but also disallowing the government to prohibit the exercise of religion. The RFRA is designed to address the latter, i.e., to guarantee that homosexuals not be favored at the price of denying believers their freedom through government intervention.

The government is involved only if there's a COMPELLING interest. There are many establishments willing to print most anything on a T-shirt so there's no compelling interest for the government to lean on the one business that because of religious beliefs refuses to do that. There are many bakeries that will construct any kind of wedding cake and many photographers who crave any kind of business so there's no compelling interest unless perhaps there's only one baker or one photographer in town for same-sex people to approach. Even then, prohibiting the exercise of faith is questionable at best since no actual harm occurs if there's no wedding cake or pictures or flowers or whatever.

Would it be too much to ask same-sexers to make some extra effort to satisfy their desires? How long does it take to phone a few establishments or preachers and find precisely what's needed? Not long, of why all the disruption? There can be only one answer, to wit, a premeditated plan to hurt somebody or some business.

In Lexington, Ky., in 2012, an LGBTQ group was denied T-shirt monogramming service by a business for religious reasons. At no extra cost, the printing was done by another provider but the homosexuals, though suffering no harm, made the usual noises/actions just because they could. The “Hobby Lobby” Supreme Court decision settled the matter but not until 2014 and not until the business had to hire lawyers for both a commission action and court action, though it was not bankrupted through loss of business and paying expensive legal counsel, the obvious intent of the LGBTQ gang, which, of course, had nothing to lose and doubtlessly had fun in the bargain. Free legal services abound for the LGBTQ folks.

The saddest aspect of the whole business is seen in the fact that the government's imprimatur is on same-sex marriage, anathema to not only scriptures and Christians but to Nature itself, a perverse violation biologically and mentally of the human body/mind. It bespeaks a society rotting from the inside out, just as did ancient Greece and Rome.

And so it goes.
Jim Clark