Gay Marriage page 117

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Originally posted by Ungeziefer:

In the US tax code, 501 ( c )s are all non-profits. Religious entities are 501 ( c )(3)s. It’s tax exempt because its a non-profit, and the specific type of non-profit is a religious institution. At least I think that’s what you’re asking here. In the end, it really is splitting hairs.

Well, firstly I was looking for some tax code briefing. Thank you :) But building on that,

What about Scientology? It seems like “religious institutions” get non profit by default. Not on account of their, well, economics. The RCC doesn’t even make its books public, how could they possibly determine whether it is for profit or not? Which, on reading your second paragraph you do concede. Scientology engages in virtually zero public works, rakes in a fortune, and is still… non profit?

Scientology got its non-profit status by infiltrating the government

 
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To me marriage isnt something that has with religion to do it has with people showing their love for eachother. I honestly dont see whats such a big deal about 2 people of the same sex getting married its not like theyre hitting on you just let them get married.

That’s how it used to be, at least where I come from. This came up a while back in another thread, but marriage involved two people agreeing to be married. That was about it. But it did cause a problem with bigamy becoming widespread, and in the 18th century the government decided that all marriages had to be state sanctioned. The Church of England, still a mighty power in the land at that time, got the job of conducting the ceremonies. It wasn’t until the 19th century that civil ceremonies became legal.

Now while there is a strong case for marriages being “official”, what with inheritance rights, pension rights etc., marriage being an exclusively religious institution was actually relatively very short lived.

 
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New Zealand has just become the 13th country to legalise gay marriage. I am so proud of my homeland to have finally given full equal rights to homosexuals. The world moves forward a little by little.

 
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I am not against it, but I wonder whether gay couples can sue churches for refusing to hold ceremonies for them.

 
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Originally posted by Pulsaris:

I am not against it, but I wonder whether gay couples can sue churches for refusing to hold ceremonies for them.

Well, sure…they can TRY to sue “churches”.
The suit probably will be tossed by a judge and done so by vehemently chastising them.
The day such a suit would win in court is the day I will leave the U.S.
 
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Originally posted by FlabbyWoofWoof:

New Zealand has just become the 13th country to legalise gay marriage. I am so proud of my homeland to have finally given full equal rights to homosexuals. The world moves forward a little by little.

Congratz to NZ!!!

 
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New Zealand parliament bursting into song following the legalization of Gay Marriage.

Maurice Williamson’s brilliant speech during the debate practically demolishing any opposition.

 
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Originally posted by FlabbyWoofWoof:

New Zealand has just become the 13th country to legalise gay marriage. I am so proud of my homeland to have finally given full equal rights to homosexuals. The world moves forward a little by little.

Wait, it’s just 13? Well, I guess America has some kind of excuse now.

 
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Originally posted by tenco1:
Originally posted by FlabbyWoofWoof:

New Zealand has just become the 13th country to legalise gay marriage. I am so proud of my homeland to have finally given full equal rights to homosexuals. The world moves forward a little by little.

Wait, it’s just 13? Well, I guess America has some kind of excuse now.

Ireland will be among the next. The US have no excuse whatsoever.

 
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Florist sued for refusing to provide flowers for a gay wedding.

Is this discrimination a justified expression of religious belief?

 
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Originally posted by FlabbyWoofWoof:

Florist sued for refusing to provide flowers for a gay wedding.

Is this discrimination a justified expression of religious belief?

Flabby, this, while a rather long-read, gives some really good info on the we reserve the right to refuse service factor.

And, I would like to think such discression is a right for a business (in MOST cases).
Obviously, a business can’t deny employment….laws against discrimation.
And, a private individual (laws again) can’t refuse to sell their house based on discrimination.

BUT, while a business does “open its doors” to the public…
I’d like to think a restaurant owner could refuse (kick out, too) some asshole that let their kids run around, yelling, and generally buggin me while I eat my $20 steak & ruining my dinning experience.

 
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Originally posted by FlabbyWoofWoof:

Florist sued for refusing to provide flowers for a gay wedding.

Is this discrimination a justified expression of religious belief?

The classic argument is that just by allowing gay marriage doesn’t mean it will be forced upon you. This suit completely contradicts one of the primary arguments of gay marriage advocate, that gay marriage won’t be forced on to peeps who disagree with it.

 
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Depends where your business is, Karma. In the EU at least, you cannot refuse service to a potential customer on the grounds of their disability, race, or sexual orientation. You can refuse service based on behavior.

Churches are a different matter, because they are not commercial operations.

 
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Florist sued for refusing to provide flowers for a gay wedding. Is this discrimination a justified expression of religious belief?

“Justified” is an interesting word here. Personally, I do not think the man should be held liable. It’s his business, his conscience, I feel it is important for him to be able to make free choices about his customer base. I don’t think anyone should be legally obligated to sell your flowers. I also feel such choices need not be justified upon the pretext of ‘religious expression.’

Further, I am not sympathetic to the idea of the free expression of religion as a concept. It has been warped from its root and is now a great flagrant excuse. Laws must, must, trump religion or we are embracing theocracy. Where the two cannot reconcile, one must remain dominant and too frequently is that line a little shaky.

 
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Originally posted by issendorf:
Originally posted by FlabbyWoofWoof:

Florist sued for refusing to provide flowers for a gay wedding.

Is this discrimination a justified expression of religious belief?

The classic argument is that just by allowing gay marriage doesn’t mean it will be forced upon you. This suit completely contradicts one of the primary arguments of gay marriage advocate, that gay marriage won’t be forced on to peeps who disagree with it.

This is not about forcing gay marriage on someone.
This is about a shop discriminating against customers.

I don’t know about the laws in the US, but where I come from stuff like that will get you in trouble as a store owner.

EDIT: Reading the article again, I actually do know the US laws on that (at least in Washington):

Washington law prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation, which applies to businesses selling goods and providing services, the ACLU statement said.

 
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This is not about forcing gay marriage on someone.

It really is forcing gay marriage on the florist. Stutzman has a moral objection to gay marriage. The ACLU is trying to force Stutzman to accept gay weddings by being forced to associate his/her (wasn’t really sure what the gender was) product with the wedding. Forced association has proven to be unconstitutional time and time again.

This is about a shop discriminating against customers.

It’s not a discrimination against gay customers. That would be a gay man coming to buy a dozen roses and being denied the ability to buy said roses. What this current lawsuit concerns is a florist not wanting to be associated with a gay wedding. There are probably 100 other florists in the area who would love to provide the flowers – go to one of them and be done with it.

 
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Moral objection is justified then issnedorf? So a white supremacist should also be allowed to deny services to an interacial wedding? Based on his moral objection to the mixing of an inferior race?

And Karma, I think Vika pointed out that if someone is being rude you should be allowed to deny them service…but just for being gay?

 
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Moral objection is justified then issnedorf? So a white supremacist should also be allowed to deny services to an interacial wedding? Based on his moral objection to the mixing of an inferior race?

If a florist wants to do that, the market will kill him and he’ll go out of business. Again, there are 100 other florists who aren’t racist bigots, I’m not sure why the interracial couple would be gung-ho on going to the Klan’s local flower shop for their wedding.

The law suit mentioned above is just someone trying to make a quick buck through the legal system. I will never feel pity for people who try to abuse the legal system for personal gain.

 
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Have to say I am with Issendorf. The Free Market should be more then capable of dealing with fringe, market restrictive choices – as opposed to having the government mandate a universal customer base. This isn’t a violence, this is the refusal to render a service. I can’t justify obligating society to furnish me their wares under threat of violence.

 
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Originally posted by FlabbyWoofWoof:

Moral objection is justified then issnedorf? So a white supremacist should also be allowed to deny services to an interracial wedding? Based on his moral objection to the mixing of an inferior race?

And Karma, I think Vika pointed out that if someone is being rude you should be allowed to deny them service…but just for being gay?

Flabby…
I want it to be crystal clear that I am not only specifically for Gay Rights, but my passion for tolerance & acceptance goes well beyond that. I realize my previous post was much too brief to have even approached a reasonable clarification….esp. on this particular lawsuit.

Obviously (at least for me), this is a situation of hugely over-lapping aspects about attainment-&-exercising of rights. And, to muddy the waters even further….these rights hail from the two distinctly different areas of private & public (business—not govt.).

For me, there is absolutely no argument about Gays being able to have a wedding ceremony. And, they certainly have the right to want & obtain flowers for the occassion.
They might even have the LEGAL right to “force” a business owner cede his “right-to-refuse” & accommodate their wish.

BUT, where the conflict of these over-lapping rights comes in is:
Who has what rights to do what?
What rights are defined & protected by laws?
Are such laws ALWAYS accomplishing their intent? Might not this level of application for the floral shop be a showing that laws aren’t perfect and that there is that—not sharp//distinct—area where the spirit of social harmony (“acquired” via law) begins to sour?

I hope I’m making it clear that just like we can’t (mostly) legislate “morality”,,,,we might be going a bit too far in micro-managing every nuance of social//business interaction when a business owner is unable to DECLINE business….for most any reason.

Please understand that this is no simple issue.
The size of the business matters a lot.
A small floral shop is a lot different than Chik-fil-A,,,
whose (sole?) owner merely expressed an objection to Gays, but did nothing to deny them service. I would say he certainly would have found himself in huge legal trouble had he tried. As it was, a huge flap was made very public. For the most part, I thought it brought about some good “conscious-raising” for our society.

While the same legal ideology can be applied to the small shop….
the question is: SHOULD it be?
Yes, I know I’m looking a weebit contradictory here.
But, I said there were widely differing aspects of this “right-to-refuse-service” issue.

A couple of things to consider:
Having the right to do something doesn’t necessarily mean it is right to do it.
Just because there is a law, this doesn’t mean the law is always just.

Then, one really must give consideration to “APPERANCES”.
Yes, the Gays have a right to marry & have a wedding.
Yes, they probably (in accordance w/ existing legal temperament of our society) have a legal right to FORCE that florist to service their wedding.

BUT, how much “damage” are they doing to the Gay-Rights cause by (selfishly?) insisting on their (legal?) rights? Could their actions be seen—by those who, ATM, don’t really have much opinion either way—as being assholish,,,,and therefore bring unwanted (but deserved?) attention to Gays?

Sometimes, instead of relying on the “black-&-white” principles of law…we maybe should direct our lives via a couple of other sayings:
Discretion is the better part of valor.
Pick your battles

So yeah, the law can probably very heavy-handily force that florist to service the Gays.
But, is this a battle that should be fought?
Could the Gays be “legally” right, but horribly socially wrong to be so pissy about something so petty?

I’m not saying that discrimination OF A REAL & OFFENSIVE nature is okay.
But, I am saying that maybe there is a mountain being made out of a molehill here.
Given time, there will (soon I hope) a point where the florist’s action would negatively impact his business due to his bigotry.

Until that time, the fight for Gay Rights really needs to keep its focus on the important issues.
I think this particular “battle” is doing more harm than good. The movement certainly doesn’t need elevated awareness. There is no one who doesn’t know a lot about it.

What the movement DOES NOT NEED is more negativity….esp. of such a petty level.

There can be a great coup here.
I hope it comes about….either from an individual, a group, or a business, or even the community at large.
Were I to own a flower shop, I would donate my service to the wedding….in order to make the counterpoint.
And, to show that the right things can be down without needing laws or having to enforce them.
Should I live there, I would dig into my pocket & pay for it (anonymously).

I would much prefer to see the community take up a collection and buy a huge amount of flowers FROM ALL OF THE OTHER florists in town.

OR, my fav here, would be for those who truly are for HUMAN RIGHTS to show up at the wedding (not inside) and place flowers at the door, etc. This is the way human decency triumphs over hateful bigotry.

 
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Originally posted by Ungeziefer:

Have to say I am with Issendorf. The Free Market should be more then capable of dealing with fringe, market restrictive choices – as opposed to having the government mandate a universal customer base. This isn’t a violence, this is the refusal to render a service. I can’t justify obligating society to furnish me their wares under threat of violence.

But they are not threatining violence but legal action. Legal Action that will always give the florist the ability to not provide the service but at a significant price.
The Laws that limit the rights to refuse exist for good and many reasons. You will find similar laws in almost any Country with a market economy in the world. History has shown that these laws are nessary, because a free market is very often not capable of dealing with the problem. The targets are often minorities with almost no market power.
Now in this case the market might or might not be able to deal with it(I personally doubt the claims that this will lead to the florist going out of buisness or sufering any kind of economic damage through the market, to many bigots, don´t care´s and non-informed people for that to happen, see chick-fil-a) and the suit might be petty as Karma puts it(i don´t know enough to judge that).
But the laws are quite clear and for good reason.

 
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I’m not sure why the interracial couple would be gung-ho on going to the Klan’s local flower shop for their wedding.

The point is not why someone would want service from a bigot or racist, but why should someone be denied service if they are not breaking the law or causing a disturbance, there should be reasonable grounds for denial of service…it’s not illegal to be gay so the florists opinion and personal view should not be considered reasonable grounds.

I would understand and respect a priests right of refusal to conduct a gay marriage, his service is a religious one. But I can see no reason why this florist can’t do their job and provide the service they offer to the community…they have no grounds to deny a non-religious service to a gay couple.

 
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Originally posted by FlabbyWoofWoof:

The point is not why someone would want service from a bigot or racist, but why should someone be denied service if they are not breaking the law or causing a disturbance, there should be reasonable grounds for denial of service…it’s not illegal to be gay so the florists opinion and personal view should not be considered reasonable grounds.

I would understand and respect a priests right of refusal to conduct a gay marriage, his service is a religious one. But I can see no reason why this florist can’t do their job and provide the service they offer to the community…they have no grounds to deny a non-religious service to a gay couple.

Exactly. It is functionally no different from refusing to serve a disabled person because “invalids creep you out”, or refusing to serve a black person because their skin color is “offputting”.

They are requesting a service from you, that you make avaiable to everyone who is willing to pay, and behaves in a cordial manner. You have then withdrawn that service from a specific individual, because of an attribute of theirs they have no control over, does not affect you, does not affect your ability to sell to others, but somehow offends you all the same.

Pure discrimination, no justification whatsoever. The law is absolutely right to deny such discrimination a right to be applied. If you allow discrimination against one minority group because of what they are not who they are or how they behave, then you must allow discrimination against every minority group because of what they are, not who they are.

 
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Originally posted by issendorf:
Originally posted by FlabbyWoofWoof:

Florist sued for refusing to provide flowers for a gay wedding.

Is this discrimination a justified expression of religious belief?

The classic argument is that just by allowing gay marriage doesn’t mean it will be forced upon you. This suit completely contradicts one of the primary arguments of gay marriage advocate, that gay marriage won’t be forced on to peeps who disagree with it.

NO, your point fails because you’re forgetting that what the Gays are wanting is based on a principle that they are SIMILARLY being DISCRIMINATED against as are most any other minority group.

It seems to be one of the tenents of “conservatives” that the “old ways” be “conserved”.
Ya know, the social-order when the big could easily dominate the small.
But, recent maturity in social enlightenment (the U.S. Const. being a fine example) has endeavored to mitigate this.

Originally posted by EPR89:

EDIT: Reading the article again, I actually do know the US laws on that (at least in Washington):

Washington law prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation, which applies to businesses selling goods and providing services, the ACLU statement said.

Yes, and (on the surface?) this sounds fair & reasonable. That is something I am a great proponent of. I’m saddened that it has to be addressed by a law.
However, I would like to know the more subtle nuances of it….punishment being a big one.
.
.
Originally posted by issendorf:
EPR said: This is not about forcing gay marriage on someone.
[important note: the balance of his point is quoted below]

It really is forcing gay marriage on the florist. Stutzman has a moral objection to gay marriage. The ACLU is trying to force Stutzman to accept gay weddings by being forced to associate his/her (wasn’t really sure what the gender was) product with the wedding. Forced association has proven to be unconstitutional time and time again.

NO.
The ACLU is making the point—one that appears to be quite standard in many nations—that if a business is OPEN TO THE PUBLIC….then the PUBLIC shall be served,,,regardless of rationally accepted nuances of it. If a person “enters” the business world to serve the public, that person tacitly limits their PERSONAL “right” to exercise their opinions via their business.

To put a reverse spin on your: “There are probably 100 other florists in the area who would love to provide the flowers – go to one of them and be done with it.”
There are probably thousands of other businesses that bigot could open that would have near-zero chance of being of interest to Gays. Two-way streets often have “collisions-of-conflict-of-interest”.
.

Originally posted by issendorf:
EPR said (second part—in support of his above quoted point): This is about a shop discriminating against customers.
It’s not a discrimination against gay customers. That would be a gay man coming to buy a dozen roses and being denied the ability to buy said roses. What this current lawsuit concerns is a florist not wanting to be associated with a gay wedding. There are probably 100 other florists in the area who would love to provide the flowers – go to one of them and be done with it.
What?
All I’m seeing here is some kind of "doublespeak…
The reasoning of not wanting to be associated w/ a gay wedding has damn little difference w/ your Gay being denied the ability to buy a dozen roses.
And, lol…I’m face-palming that the “rellgion-card” is being played for this gambit. Wasn’t it just a few pages back that someone pointed out the the SCOTUS tossed out religion as a reason for denial of Gay marriage?

JohnnyB weighs in w/ the most succinct point:

Originally posted by JohnnyBeGood:
But the laws are quite clear and for good reason.

And, vika makes great support of it in her post.
Esp. when she points out (as I did above): “They are requesting a service from you, that you make avaiable to everyone who is willing to pay, and behaves in a cordial manner.”
I’m guessing that such is the hook the law is hung on.

 
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The point is not why someone would want service from a bigot or racist, but why should someone be denied service if they are not breaking the law or causing a disturbance, there should be reasonable grounds for denial of service…it’s not illegal to be gay so the florists opinion and personal view should not be considered reasonable grounds.

But it is illegal to force the florist to associate with the gay wedding, a point you conveniently ignored. Again, there’s a difference between not selling a dozen roses to someone simply because they are gay and not wanting their product associated with a gay wedding.

But I can see no reason why this florist can’t do their job and provide the service they offer to the community…they have no grounds to deny a non-religious service to a gay couple.

They actually do have legal grounds – Boy Scouts V. Dale would probably be their best bet, but there are others as well that I can provide you if you are interested.