Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Clash Between Religious Liberty and Same-Sex Equality Explored

As gay marriages began to be performed in California yesterday under a recent state Supreme Court ruling (New York Times), commentators focused on the potential clash between religious liberty and equality for gays and lesbians. Yesterday NPR reporter Barbara Bradley Hagerty produced a piece on Morning Edition focusing on the issue-- with special emphasis on the refusal of Ocean Grove, New Jersey's Methodist-run Camp Meeting Association to permit its Pavilion to be used for same-sex wedding ceremonies. In this morning's Los Angeles Times, Marc Stern of the American Jewish Congress published an op-ed piece titled "Will gay rights trample religious freedom?" He writes that while the California Supreme Court insisted that its recent decision would not infringe religious liberty, "there is substantial reason to believe that these assurances ... are either wrong or reflect a cramped view of religion." Meanwhile World Net Daily yesterday carried an article focusing on the same clash in the context of Colorado's new anti-discrimination law, SB 200, that now covers discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, particularly in public accommodations. The bill was signed by the governor last month.