Well of course they have.
Just one day after the Supreme Court’s decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., 14 faith leaders have written a letter to President Obama, asking him to include a religious exemption in his planned executive order barring hiring discrimination based on sexual orientation by federal contractors.
The Washington Post’s Michelle Boorstein reports that a group of faith leaders — including a former staffer on President Obama’s campaign and in his Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships — have asked Obama to create a religious exemption so that “an extension of protection for one group not come at the expense of faith communities whose religious identities and beliefs motivate them to serve those in need.”
First of all – god damn it Obama I told you not to suck up to the god damn White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships when there shouldn’t even be such a thing because separation of church and god damn state, god damn it. It should have been shut down as soon as you got home from the inauguration, but instead you expanded it. Bad bad bad move.
Second the whole idea is beneath contempt. Not allowing “faith communities” who take money from the feds to discriminate based on sexual orientation is not doing anything at their expense. They don’t have to discriminate based on sexual orientation. They can just not do that. It doesn’t cost them anything. If they think their god wants them to be shitty based on sexual orientation they should just go away and tend to their gardens.
Without a religious exemption, they contend, “this expansion of hiring rights will come at an unreasonable cost to the common good, national unity and religious freedom.”
Wrong. Wrong wrong wrong. It’s the other way around. It’s the discrimination that poses an unreasonable cost to the common good. As for unity – what makes them think national unity depends on being shitty based on sexual orientation?
The letter’s signatories include Joel Hunter, pastor of Northland Church who is known as a “spiritual advisor” to the president; Larry Snyder, CEO of Catholic Charities USA; Pastor Rick Warren; and Michael Wear, faith outreach director for Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign and a former staffer in the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
Wow. All close colleagues then; all buddies of Obama – and that’s the kind of people they are. How disgusting.
Obama, even when not legally required, has a history of offering churches and religious non-profits exemptions and accommodations from the law: for example, HHS granted churches an exemption and religious non-profits an accommodation when drafting the contraception coverage benefit. In Monday’s decision, the Court suggested the accommodation made available to religious non-profits might be applicable to closely-held corporations as well.
SO BOY WAS THAT A HUGE MISTAKE, RIGHT?
On the hiring issue, too, Obama has deferred to the demands of religious non-profits,reneging on a campaign promise to end hiring discrimination by religious non-profits that receive federal funding to carry out their charitable activities. That reversal came under pressure from religious leaders who wanted that exemption — rooted in a 2007 Bush administration Justice Department memo — to remain in place.
Why. Why side with them? Why side with people who want to discriminate and thus against people on the sharp end of that discrimination? Why, why, why? It’s so evil.
A June 2014 letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, signed by over 90 religious, civil rights, women’s, and LGBT rights groups maintained, “RFRA should not be interpreted or employed as a tool for broadly overriding statutory protections against religious discrimination or to create a broad free exercise right to receive government grants without complying with applicable regulations that protect taxpayers.” (emphasis mine)
Legally speaking, it is not clear that Monday’s decision in Hobby Lobby requires such a provision. On my bloggingheads show, University of Miami Law School First Amendment expert Carolina Mala Corbin discussed the impact of Monday’s decision in the Hobby Lobby case on LGBT rights. “Assuming the federal government passes laws that ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation,” she said, ” you could very much expect to have corporations to object to these laws based on their religious beliefs.”
The question, Corbin added, is “whether the outcome would be the same…given that Justice Kennedy seems much more sympathetic to sexual orientation discrimination than he does toward sex discrimination.” Meaning, that is, that Justice Kennedy, the crucial swing vote, rejected religiously-based discrimination based on sexual orientation in United States v. Windsor, in striking down the Defense of Marriage Act, but sided with the majority in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, finding that the Affordable Care Act’s contraception coverage requirement violates a corporation’s religious rights under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
Because…I don’t know, because civilization depends on keeping women down? I just don’t understand any of this.