Saturday, September 05, 2015

Religious Freedom on the Line in Kentucky

What You Should Know About the Kentucky Clerk Marriage License Controversy

When the Supreme Court handed down the Obergefell v. Hodges ruling, it made same-sex marriage legal throughout the United States and required every state to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Kim Davis, the county clerk in Rowan County, Kentucky, said she could not issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples because of her religious objections. To avoid claims that she was discriminating, Davis stopped issuing all marriage licenses—to both same-sex and opposite-sex couples.

Two gay couples and two straight couples sued her, arguing that her duties as an elected official required her to act, despite her personal religious beliefs. A federal judge ordered her to issue the licenses, and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals agreed. She appealed to the Supreme Court, which denied her request without explanation in a brief one-line order. Since then she has still refused to issue marriage licenses.

On September 3, Davis was found to be in contempt of court and was taken into federal custody. Read more

Need We Jail Each Other Over Marriage Licenses?

The situation involving Kentucky County Clerk Kim Davis presents the most complex case concerning religious liberty since the Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage in all fifty states with its June Obergefell ruling.

The complexity of this case arises from the fact that Mrs. Davis is a government employee charged with the responsibility of upholding the rule of law. Were this a case involving a private citizen, the facts and argument would look drastically different.

For the facts of the case, we would point you to this ERLC explainer.

There are four issues at stake worth exploring. Read more

Jail time for Kentucky County Clerk

Summary: Ms Davis was not setting herself “above the law” as so many commentators have suggested. She was attempting to act within the law. Read more

“In this World You Will Have Trouble” — Welcome to Rowan County

The Commonwealth of Kentucky is now the setting for a dramatic display of judicial arrogance, even as the larger story points to the sweeping moral change that is transforming the nation’s landscape. Today, U.S. District Judge David Bunning ordered Kim Davis, County Clerk of Rowan County, to go to jail for refusing to obey an order of his court requiring Mrs. Davis to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Read more

Also see
Same-sex couples get licenses; clerk sits in jail
Judge sends Kentucky county clerk to jail

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