By Bob Bennett
America is now a nation where the wishes and needs of the many are subordinated to those of the few. We’re not just a nation where the majority can’t mistreat the minority—that would be fair—no: here the minority gets to dictate to and mistreat the majority.
SCOTUS bustled to carry out the Obama agenda by fabricating a constitutional right for gays to marry, and subordinating the right to free exercise of religion, which actually is enumerated in the Constitution.
Yes, America: your Supreme Court has decided it can now write law, and it can amend the Constitution—unquestionably, powers that belong to the Legislative Branch of government, and the state legislatures.
But that’s OK with the Legislative Branch, because we have only a mock legislature that validates Obama’s wishes with as much alacrity as the five (or is it six?) liberal justices. This decision is a classic example of tyranny of the minority over the majority, unlawfully enforced by government.
According to the National Health Interview Survey, in 2014, 1.6 percent of Americans identified as gay or lesbian, out of which 646,464 live as same sex couples.
There are an estimated 350,000 Christian congregations in America, according to the Hartford Institute for Religion Research, with about 65,100,000 congregants. That’s roughly ten times the number of gays who might want to marry.
In addition, Orthodox Jewish groups oppose it: the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America said: “We reiterate the historical position of the Jewish faith, enunciated unequivocally in our Bible, Talmud and Codes, which forbids homosexual relationships and condemns the institutionalization of such relationships as marriages…. Our religion is emphatic in defining marriage as … between a man and a woman. Our beliefs in this regard are unalterable.”
Agudath Israel of America:
“The Torah, which forbids homosexual activity, sanctions only the union of a man and a woman in matrimony…. We do not seek to impose our religious principles on others, it is our sincere conviction that discarding the historical definition of marriage is not a positive step for civilized society.”
Yet those five justices went over the Constitution with a microscope and tweezers, in their desperation to accommodate the minority and please Obama. Unfortunately, it will be at the expense of Americans of faith, who are guaranteed the right to practice their religion, under the First Amendment. But for those faithful who are likely to disagree with this decree: not to worry, in the majority decision, Kennedy said this:
“The First Amendment ensures that religious organizations and persons are given proper protection as they seek to teach the principles that are so fulfilling and so central to their lives and faiths… The same is true of those who oppose same-sex marriage for other reasons.” [Emphasis mine.]
Not so fast—Why didn’t he say Americans of faith can freely “exercise” their religious freedom—the very first protection the founders penned into the First Amendment? Because he wanted same-sex marriage rights to trump the free exercise right.
Saying the First Amendment will protect “religious organizations and persons” as they teach their faith clearly means the Amendment’s free speech protection will apply—not its protection for free exercise of religion.
This is underscored by the next sentence, saying those who oppose same-sex marriage for “other reasons” would have the same rights as the faithful—the right to speak about gay marriage being a sin—but not to act on it—in the minister’s case, by refusing to perform gay marriages. SCOTUS would give a minister the same rights as a guy on a soapbox: to talk. Perhaps we can convert the DC mall into a kind of Hyde Park, where any crackpot can proclaim his opinions, for the benefit of tourists, who may pass by and snicker.
Justice Alito questioned Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr., who was arguing for the same-sex couples on behalf of the Obama administration. (That’s right: the White House was pushing this, with our tax dollars):
Justice Alito cited the case of Bob Jones University, a fundamentalist Christian university, where the Court held that the college was not entitled to a tax exemption, if it opposed interracial marriage. He asked: “Would the same apply to a university or a college if it opposed same-sex marriage?”
Verrilli replied, “I don’t deny that, Justice Alito. It is –it is going to be an issue.”
So, we can plainly see the president intends to take that course. And the Court assists him, by not only unlawfully legislating, but by effectively amending our cherished First Amendment: adding an exception to religious rights for same-sex marriage. This will inevitably lead to lawsuits by gay activists against churches and ministers, unless the latter are willing to change their beliefs.
It is, however, doubtful that lawsuits will be launched against mosques and imams.
But constitutional scholars declare, “The Free Exercise Clause not only protects religious belief and expression; it also seems to allow for violation of laws, as long as that violation is made for religious reasons. In the terms of economic theory, the Free Exercise Clause promotes a free religious market by precluding taxation of religious activities by minority sects.”— Richard Posner and Michael McConnell, “An Economic Approach to Issues of Religious Freedom,” University of Chicago Law Review.
Here is the central issue for 2016: the Left’s War on Religion. Americans who love their country, who decry the incessant violation of our Constitution; Americans of faith must let religious leaders know we have their back. And to do so, recall that the First Amendment also guarantees “the right of the people peaceably to assemble.” Since all three branches of government have betrayed the nation and violated the Constitution, the American people must stand up for themselves. Anyway, why should the Left have a monopoly on protest?
When this issue comes up—and it surely will—do not depend upon the courts, organize a protest, and do not fail to include Blacks and Hispanics: both groups are intensely religious. Also, challenge presidential candidates to join the protest.
Do not be intimidated by government. There could be no more fearsome government than that of Nazi Germany, but a unique protest was launched by Aryan women against Nazi Germany’s imprisonment of 1700 of their Jewish husbands. This was the only public German protest against deportation of Jews. Barbara Ash tells the story of the Rosenstrasse Protest:
“Day and night for a week in early 1943, hundreds of unarmed German women did something that was unheard of in Nazi Germany.
“They stood toe-to-toe with machine gun-wielding Gestapo agents and demanded the release of their Jewish husbands from Adolph Hitler’s murderous grip. The men were locked up in the Jewish community center in the heart of Berlin, victims of Hitler’s ‘final roundup’ of German Jews.”
“The women’s courage and passion prevailed: As thousands of other Berlin Jews were crammed into cattle cars and transported to Auschwitz, the Jews married to “Aryan” German women were set free.”
Bob Bennett is a New York-based writer who has written op-eds for the Wall Street Journal and the NY Post, and has appeared on Fox and Friends and America’s Newsroom. He has traveled widely and written travel pieces for the NY Post, a cover article for the Jewish Press, and an op-ed for the medical journal Cancer Biotherapy & Radioimmunotherapy. Bob was also award-winning producer of a travel radio show heard on New York stations: WMCA, WNWK and 50,000 watt WOR and the national Sky Angel Network. He now blogs on Tea Party Nation, Tea Party Community and Red State Diaries.