By Rebecca Juro
Originally published on Advocate.com August 26 2014 1:04 PM ET
Marriage equality is tyranny, LGBT-inclusive antidiscrimination laws violate religious freedom, and objection to same-sex marriage is its own sexual orientation, argues archconservative columnist Joseph Farah in a new op-ed for WND.com, the right-wing site where he serves as CEO.
Citing examples of business owners who violated LGBT-protective antidiscrimination laws and then were held to account, Farah claims, “These are real-life examples of citizens being deprived of the free exercise of their religious beliefs, as guaranteed by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution by officials in four different states. It’s becoming a trend. It’s what I call ‘same-sex marriage tyranny.’”
Farah goes on to contend that those who do not wish to serve LGBT customers because of their stated religious convictions “are being coerced to become active participants in ceremonies and celebrations that violate their consciences — in America, a nation formed and codified in the law as a refuge for the free exercise of religion.”
He also claims that laws banning discrimination based on sexual orientation could hypothetically protect such businesspeople: “Are they not being coerced to accept and approve someone else’s sexual orientation? Are they not permitted to hold their own sexual orientation, one that acknowledges their God’s definition that marriage is a union of one man and one woman?”
Doubling down on his argument that religious freedom should supersede the right of all Americans to be treated fairly and equally under the law, Farah argues, “There is no inalienable right to force individuals or businesses through government coercion to become active participants in activity that violates their most fundamental religious or moral beliefs.”
The WND.com CEO saves his most radical and fringiest argument for last, though, claiming, “When ‘non-discrimination’ becomes victimization of those with different religious and moral convictions, we literally have the establishment of a state religion and, effectively, the repeal of the First Amendment.”