Does Ga. need ‘pastor protection law’? Yes, it probably does

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(AP)

Georgia House Speaker David Ralston told fellow members of the House Republican Caucus this weekend that he will push passage of a so-called “Pastor Protection Law” that would write into law an explicit guarantee that members of the clergy cannot be forced to perform gay marriages against their will.

According to a Ralston spokesman, the bill would state:

Personally, I think it’s a wonderful idea.

True, it is also a meaningless bit of pandering that will have no real effect, but never underestimate the value of political theater.  If a new state law gives Georgia religious leaders the public reassurance that they seek that they won’t be forced to marry Adam and Steve or Mary and Sherri, and if Georgia political leaders feel the need to tamp down the panic over gay marriage in some quarters by giving clergy that reassurance, then by all means pass the bill.

Certainly, Georgia won’t be alone. Texas passed similar “pastor protection” legislation just last month, and GOP legislators in Tennessee are so excited about the concept that they are talking about calling a special session to pass their own version. By September, I suspect, such bills will be popping up all over the country, including Congress, because there’s nothing that politicians like better than heroically fending off a nonexistent threat.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott offers a great example of such posturing. “Pastors now have the freedom to exercise their First Amendment rights,” he said in signing his state’s version of the bill, as if that freedom had in any way been at risk prior to affixing his signature.

It’s important to note that the Texas bill passed with relatively little controversy. The vote in the Texas House, for example, was 141-2, and the only two openly gay Texas legislators voted in favor of the bill.  Equality Texas, which advocates for the gay and lesbian community, also endorsed the bill’s final passage.

Why the lack of opposition? Because no one has any intent to force churches or ministers to act contrary to their faith; even if somebody harbored such silly intentions, there are no possible legal means for doing so. The Constitution and centuries of court precedent make it clear that government has no right to intrude on matters that are so clearly within the purview of a church.

Those who tell you otherwise are either trying to take advantage of your presumed ignorance or are themselves ignorant of the facts. Even the highly conservative Family Research Council, which strongly opposes gay marriage, acknowledges that “Churches and ministers have solid protection under the First Amendment. At time of publication, there is no appreciable risk that clergy would be compelled by a court to host or perform a same-sex ceremony.”

And while Speaker Ralston is more than lawyer enough to know that, he also understands the value of allowing his members to restate the obvious.

Reader Comments 0

674 comments
bu2
bu2

And it will get challenged in court, sooner or later.  Or at the IRS, trying to take away tax exempt status.

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

I'm thinking Ralston wants to pave the way for those REQUIRED to  preside, such as county officials, to hide behind their "faith" if they decide to avoid presiding by becoming "ministers of the Word" by "degree" from an online-ordination "seminary."  This man thinks ahead, and has probably been approached by some civil authorities in his district.

Point
Point

I just gotta say that if I spent my days performing unnecessary work, the boss would have fired me a long time ago. 

YouLibs
YouLibs

I just got in from work and tuned in to see what kind of chicanery far-left liberals are engaged in that is destroying the America that del grew up in. I can't tell you how disappointed I am that neither he nor Doomy is here.


Fitty tree is here, though, still going on about how socialism has totally destroyed Greece, just like it did Norway and the Netherlands and Sweden, and Canada, and New Zealand.


I'm gonna take a cold shower (it was a hot one out there today) and go sit and listen to the dynamo hum for a bit.


I just thought ol' Farnsworth would wonder what was on my agenda.


Oh, and I hope Orange will sign in and let us know who God has condemned to Hell so far this week.

elgrunir
elgrunir

LONELY DOG LIMERICK


Here I am, with my poems alone

All others?The coop they have flown

But I am not bitter

To hell with that “Twitter”

I’ll just stay here and gnaw on the bone

elgrunir
elgrunir

AIN'T GONNA BEAT HILLARY 


Hillary will win in a ‘slide

Making the Repubs abide

By the law of the land

Without sleight of hand

In spite of their slogans well-cried

elgrunir
elgrunir

WORK HARDER, YOU LAZY BUMS! 



The “trickle” for workers--dammed shut

The Republican response? “But… but…

You need to work more

Or we’ll show you the door

You’re nothing to us but a mutt”

elgrunir
elgrunir

Shouting about "family values," huh?


Republicans?  Well?... 



Overworked America: 12 Charts That Will Make Your Blood Boil

Why "efficiency" and "productivity" really mean more profits for corporations and less sanity for you.

—By Dave Gilson

| July/August 2011 Issue

"Want more rage? We've got 11 charts that show how the superrich spoil it for the rest of us.

In the past 20 years, the US economy has grown nearly 60 percent. This huge increase in productivity is partly due to automation, the internet, and other improvements in efficiency. But it's also the result of Americans working harder—often without a big boost to their bottom lines. Oh, and meanwhile, corporate profits are up 20 percent. (Also read our essay on the great speedup and harrowing first-person tales of overwork.)"


http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2011/06/speedup-americans-working-harder-charts

elgrunir
elgrunir

"For decades, studies have shown the diminishing returns of  consistently putting in more than 40 hours a week, while some economists (and Google founders) have repeatedly pointed out that with technology doing more and more of the heavy lifting when it comes to productivity, it might be wiser economically and  socially (and hey, maybe even spiritually) if we all worked a bit less--say, 30 hours a week."


http://www.inc.com/jessica-stillman/which-country-has-the-most-productive-workers.html

elgrunir
elgrunir

SO SAYS JEB


So Americans need to work more

So they can buy food at the store

I bet this Bush Jeb

Is our Johnny Reb

Hard-line Repub to the core

td1234
td1234

@elgrunir Even the progressive media stated that is not what Bush meant. 

elgrunir
elgrunir

@fedup52 @td1234 @elgrunir 


"Bush later clarified that he was referring to those working part-time and not full-time workers. But Democrats have pounced, believing it to be a significant foul-up by Bush.

So how many hours do Americans actually work?

According to an August Gallup poll, 42 percent of U.S. workers 18 and older work 40 hours a week -- the standard for full-time employment, while 50 percent work longer than that. The average time Americans spend working is 47 hours -- nearly a full extra workday, Gallup noted."


http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2015/07/09/jeb-bush-said-americans-should-work-more-hours-but-how-many-hours-do-we-have-left/


The "clarification" came after much-deserved backlash.



fedup52
fedup52

@elgrunir @fedup52 @td1234 According to NYT (think Krugman) the American full timers work 30% longer than the Germans.  That is due to the long vacation the Germans get.  If they can be world economic power house with their workers working less total hours they must be doing something right

elgrunir
elgrunir

NEW KID ON THE BLOCK...


Hey--who’s this new liker named “meade?”

I somehow cannot draw a bead

A lady or a dude?

I can’t tell by the mood

Just simply flummoxed… I concede

elgrunir
elgrunir

CALLING FED-UP...


FedUp--when are you gonna get posting?

And join us here at the roasting

We’re here taking digs

At the greedy-a$$ pigs

Have the marshmallows finished their toasting?

(just kidding, Dude)

gotalife
gotalife

She attacked jeb on Americans need to work harder and proposed sharing those record profits with employees.


She is hell bent on raising the min wage and wages for the middle class.


It is the Clinton economy and it is proven it works for the middle class to grow not fall.


She crushed it on the economy stupid. The number one issue again.

elgrunir
elgrunir

MIDDLE CLASS BLUES 


Once again, it’s ‘bout middle class

The roots will still be of grass

There are so many shoeless

Yet Repubs are clueless

Hey! Pull your head outta yer a$$

elgrunir
elgrunir

PAGING "GOTALIFE"

Dem presidents clean up the mess

Created by ‘Pubs, no less

So says my momma

When it comes to Obama

“He toys with ‘em, ‘cause he’s playing chess”

elgrunir
elgrunir

STRAIGHTNOCHASER (or spacer, for that matter) 


Straight, no chaser?What’s the drink?

A 200 proof, I would think

It’s maybe too risky

To consider the whiskey

Hmmm… how ‘bout something in pink?

gotalife
gotalife

It's the economy stupid.


She blasted the gop candidates


Said she will not be weak on white collar crimes. .

elgrunir
elgrunir

ORIGINAL PROFESSOR


So where did the Prof come from?

Where as a kid he beat on his drum?

Perhaps another state?

Well, at any given rate

The word, so far, has been mum

Cupofjoe
Cupofjoe

Always remember there is no middle ground-  keep arguing as it is the best path-

gotalife
gotalife

" Clinton suggested that the economy is "not delivering the way that it should" for the middle class.

"It still seems to most Americans that I have spoken with that it is stacked for those at the top," Clinton said, criticizing the concept of trickle-down economics for concentrating wealth at the top while leaving middle- and lower-income Americans with less.

"Twice now a Democratic president has had to come in and clean up the mess left behind," she said, praising the economic records of her husband, former President Bill Clinton, and Obama. "We have to build a growth and fairness economy -- you can't have one without the other."


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/07/13/hillary-clinton-2016-_n_7784722.html


This speech is very important to know what is coming.

StraightNoChaser
StraightNoChaser

@gotalife Republicans have a Donald Trump problem, even if the does not win the nomination, the number of people showing up at his rallies is a telling sign of the true colors, no pun intended, and ideology of the Republican party.  He is a birther and a bigot.

Nick_Danger
Nick_Danger

@gotalife 

It seems the Republicans are trying to paint Mrs. Clinton as an elitist, even as she advocates for the middle class.

Likewise, they are trying to talk about themselves as champions of the middle class, as they advocate only for the wealthy.

We'll see how that works out for them in 2016, I guess.

gotalife
gotalife

@Nick_Danger @gotalife  Yup but we know the Clinton economy grew the middle class up and gop dropped them down.So we know the gop are lying as usual but do the voters know? They will after listening to her until the election. She will win.

fiftythreepercenter
fiftythreepercenter

The Greece fiasco..... Where liberals quote other liberals who quote other liberals who quote other liberals who are all sure the cause is something other than socialism proving once again it's an unsustainable model that will always fail under it's own weight.  


You libs are like addicts who refuse to admit your problem is YOU.

elgrunir
elgrunir

@fiftythreepercenter 


Same song from you, no?


For corporations: socialize the risks and losses, privatize the profits.


"Socalism--Bad!  Unless I benefit..."

RaindroidWillBoy
RaindroidWillBoy

@Normd


How about Hillary voters knowing her top contributors are Wall Street financiers?  

JamVet
JamVet

Charleston, South Carolina (CNN)The spiritual community that wowed the world with its forgiveness in the face of the darkest evil came together Sunday morning and celebrated history -- both recent and past.

They worshiped for the first time since the Confederate flag came down on the Capitol grounds on Friday. Its removal was prompted in large part by the horror that unfolded last month in Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, or Mother Emanuel, as it's often called.

That was when a white racist who glorified the Confederate flag gunned down and killed nine people, including the Rev. Clementa Pinckney, a state senator who had waged a battle against the flag's presence.

Tragedy has hit the church before, and always they've overcome. Just look at the church's beginnings.

One of its founders, when it was at another location and known as the Hampstead Church, was a freed slave named Denmark Vesey. He began planning an elaborate slave revolt in 1821. When he was found out, he and some of his followers were executed. And the Hampstead Church was burned to the ground.

The church rebuilt then, just as it did again after an earthquake destroyed it once more in 1886. The second time around, it reopened where it is today.

"We now stand to write a new chapter," the pastor said Sunday to a packed sanctuary that included visitors black and white. "The only way that evil can prevail in the world is for good people to sit down and be quiet. We are better together than we are separate and apart."

A man from Buffalo, New York, who didn't want to be named and doesn't go to church himself, said he traveled to Charleston just for this service.

"I came down here because I was so moved by their grace, humility and courage," said the man, who is white. "I want a dab of their grace. ... I'm more angry than they are."