Pat Robertson continues to follow the view that we’re setting ourselves up for fire and brimstone judgment(i.e., Sodom and Gomorrah) by allowing gay and lesbian couples to get married.
“What’s next?” Pat worries. “Sex with angels?” Other than Jake Gillenhall, I’m not sure that angels exist, but I guess it’s next on the gay agenda. I admit I’m a few issues behind in the gay agenda magazine, but I thought we were still trying to achieve a basic right to marry the person we love. I’ve got some summer reading to catch up on.
On his show, Pat Robertson was defending the right of Jack Phillips, a cake baker in Colorado. Jack believes his antiquated views about marriage should allow him to refuse to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple. Jack told Fox News, “I do what I do because I love doing what I do and I believe it’s what God’s designed for me to do.”
So let me see if I’m interpreting Jack’s argument correctly. As part of Jack’s exercise of his religious freedom, God has told him to bake cakes. But don’t bake cakes for gays.
I like Jack’s idea that God is speaking to him through cakes. I’d go to church every Sunday if I could find a faith where they preached that God intended us to EAT cake all the time, but until there’s the Church of Marie Antoinette, I guess I’ll have to do with the vestiges of my Baptist upbringing.
The issue of religious belief and practice has plagued the First Amendment for almost 150 years. In 1878, a guy sued the government to overturn his conviction for polygamy citing the First Amendment. Reynolds had a good point. Polygamy is widely practiced in the Bible, including by many of the heroes, such King David, but the Supreme Court ruled that “Laws are made for the government of actions, and while they cannot interfere with mere religious beliefs and opinions, they may with practices.”
This advice should resonate with the views of Christians today who feel that they ought to have the right to discriminate against gays and lesbians because they believe that gays and lesbians are an abomination. The government is not trying to stop your beliefs, but the government is saying that if you want to have a business, then I can certainly regulate your actions.
Baking a cake for a same sex couple doesn’t mean the guy has to change his beliefs on gay marriage. But I expect that if Jack Phillips had baked the cake, and then delivered it to the wedding, and seen the joy and excitement of the happy couple’s day, that Jack’s beliefs might have been changed. Probably not completely, but just a little bit. And maybe that’s the danger that is real here. Forcing people to interact with those that are different from them does tend to change views. That’s why folks with a military background are among the most accepting of people with different backgrounds.
So I’m glad that the court in Colorado is telling a businessman that the government has the ability to regulate his actions and force him to provide his services to people regardless of their beliefs. I worry that if we allow businesses to refuse service to customers because businesses have religious beliefs (a right the Supreme Court recently gave to Hobby Lobby), that one day, when I go through the drive-thru at Chick-Fil-A, I will be denied waffle fries. They’ll let me have one of their dry chicken sandwiches and an iced tea, but God will have told the CEO that gays and lesbians shouldn’t be allowed waffle fries.
The government should not allow private businesses to deny me my waffle fries. Or cake.