Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Is Kim Davis right?

Interesting test case in Kentucky where a county clerk, Kim Davis, refused to issue marriage licenses because of her opposition to gay marriage and was subsequently jailed. A judge later ordered her release and she has vowed not to issue marriage licenses to gays and lesbians under her name.

Is she right?

Well, of course, that depends on what side of the argument youre on. Ill take a non-partisan position and lets see. First of all, we must determine whether or not the state requires clerks of court in Kentucky to issue marriage licenses or allows it. Thats a critical point. My understanding is Alabama allows clerks to issue marriage licenses. Thats why the clerks there who have refused to issue licenses havent been jailed. Its my understanding that Kentucky requires it, which would put Kim Davis in contempt.

But that doesnt settle the argument. Theres the matter of objecting to a law because of your religious beliefs. Remember Muhammad Ali objected to the selective service law and was allowed to avoid the draft. In fact, exemptions are made for all sorts of people based on their religions. The Amish come to mind.

The bigger question is who has authority over the Kentucky matter. It troubles me that federal marshals detained Mrs. Davis. Its my opinion that marriage is and always has been a matter of the state government, not the federal government. Federal authorities jailing an elected official over something that is clearly not under the authority of the federal government is troublesome, to say the least. What compounds the concern is how many times federal government officials refuse to enforce the law or unilaterally countermand with no negative repercussions.

Take President Obama, for example. How many times has he refused to enforce immigration law? Absolutely nothing has happened to him. In fact, not only has he refused to follow the law, he has instructed the Border Patrol to ignore it, as well. Innocent citizens have died because he has allowed criminal illegals to roam the streets.

Speaking of which, why didnt the federal marshals detain the idiots in San Francisco who defied an ICE demand to turn a dangerous illegal alien over to them and, instead, turned him loose on the streets where he murdered someone? This happens all the time. Why arent those people in jail.

When it comes to gay marriage, why didnt someone arrest the mayor of San Francisco several years ago when he ordered the city clerk to start issuing marriage licenses to gays even though it was against the law? Surely, if the federal government can arrest someone for not issuing a license when they believe its now legal, they could arrest someone for issuing a license when it was not.

Thats my problem with the Kim Davis issue. Personally, if I objected to issuing marriage licenses to gays I would simply resign. Apparently she wants to make a statement and shes certainly doing that. Its an issue that needs to be resolved. If were going to have religious accommodations for religion then we need to somehow accommodate Mrs. Davis. If were not, we need to end them for everyone, which many would argue violates their constitutional rights. Why arent these folks standing up for Davis?

Perhaps if she were Muslim things would be different. The politically correct are bending over backwards accommodating them. Perhaps out of fear, I dont know. No matter the motivation, its time to be evenhanded. Maybe if the gays wanting to get married were confederates or, worse, lion-killers Davis would get a little bit more sympathy.

Phil Valentine is the host of the award-winning, nationally syndicated talk radio show, 
The Phil Valentine Show.

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