I have had a hard time processing the events in Kentucky this first week of September 2015. I am in favor of people to have the freedom of their religion, but that freedom does not give one the right to oppress another with their religious view points. Certainly, I was elated to learn that the courts would enforce the law, hold her in contempt and allow marriages certificates be issued in Rowan, Kentucky, but at the same time I was ashamed that we are still at a place and time in this country where a person had to be jailed because of her religious views. I agree with the judges decision of how to handle this circumstance, he did not have a lot of options. Clearly Kim could not be reasoned with, she was just bat-shit crazy. Further the pain and emotional anguish that she imposed on citizens of the community in which she was supposed to serve was shameful.
Kim's circumstance is not all that different than the religious bigotry that is occurring all over this world. How is her refusing to issue a marriage license to a gay couple any different than another faith that prevent women from accessing education, or that hangs a teenager because he is gay, or beats a trans gender person for not conforming to clothing norms?
I was particularly outraged by the video where Kim was asked under who's authority she is denning the issuance of a marriage license, and she simply answered in a very self-righteous tone, “under God's Authority” as if she had been somehow empowered to exercise the authority of a higher power, to dictate a specific viewpoint, to enforce a narrow belief system on everyone else for our own good. When I think of this I struggle to see how this is any different that the extreme views of religious extremists anywhere else on this planet. It simply is not.
Bigotry, hate, discrimination, in all its forms are the things that tear at the very fabric of our society. I certainly believe in religious freedom and liberty, but I believe that Freedom of Religion, also means Freedom from Religion. In other words, one is free to believe what one deems appropriate for oneself, but one cannot dictate or enforce a specific belief system upon another.
As a society our concepts of thought and conscience must evolve to continue a successful co-existence, and the concept of equality is an important one for continued human survival. Our societies are doomed and will not advance if we cannot find a way to eliminate our fears and shed the prejudice for those that are different.
Sadly, I can already see where this is headed. Even now Kim Davis supporters are chanting thank you slogans in support of her bigotry. I predict at some date in the not too distant future she will be released from jail, and she may even agree to quit her job, but will go on to work the conservative speaking circuit in this nation, write a book or some ghost writer will do it for her, and she will make huge profits and be financially rewarded for her shameful expression of bigotry. She will faithfully tithe that money to her church which will continue to preach this painful hatred from the pulpit.
And life will go on much the same way it goes on this very day and the scum and villainy of human beings will continue to be expressed in vulgar and despicable ways.
Still I cling firmly to the hope that Love will eventually win out, and that ultimately people can and do change, and equality will one day be realized for all human on this planet and until then the struggle will continue.
Here is another person's well written viewpoint: