Wednesday, July 3, 2013

An Open Letter to Mike Huckabee

Mike -

May I suggest contemplation of "And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's. And they marvelled at him." Mark 12:17 and then meditate upon it in paralell with a review of the Establishment Cause of the First Amendment - "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"

Thomas Jefferson and the rest of the founding fathers had the wisdom, often bought by bitter experience, to recognize the virtues of separating church and state (see the Danbury letter, as preserving to the extent possible the virtues of both.

Is not the highest and best practice of faith (and its teachings) that performed voluntarily, free of government compulsion?

Nothing in recent decisions regarding same sex marriage compels any faith to endorse any particular form of marriage, nor do they compel any faith to deride any form of marriage - rather, and simply, the decision regarding Section 3 of DOMA decision states that the Federal Government may not choose which marriages authorized under the laws of the various states the Federal Government will shower their benefits upon.

The Court found that the civil elements of marriage (benefits, privileges, responsibilities) were and are defined by the states within broad limits and then went forth to hint rather strongly in dicta that those limits would be held (at a minimum) to the "rational basis" level of scrutiny and that laws prohibiting the granting of marriage licenses to same sex couples were roughly comparable to those banning granting of marriage licenses to interracial couples, laws already found to fail that minimal test.

I would suggest that you are entitled to hold any view of marriage and what version may or may not be godly that you wish - however, that you are *not* (nor am I) entitled to dictate that a particular view of marriage be the only one recognized by the federal government.

May God bless and guide you to the realization that the civil elements of marriage are the business of civil government - and that the religious elements, including which ones a given faith might recognize or conduct, are the business of that faith.

- GC

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