Well, Lookee There! I Actually Agree with Eric Miller. Sort of.

In one of the recent missives sent out by Advance America, Eric Miller gave the reasons why he is (surprise!) supporting Scott Schneider’s “Religious Freedom” bill.

For one thing, it’s because that bullying government (the one that makes it possible for folks to do business) shouldn’t be able to make retail establishments treat gay customers the same way they treat other members of the general public on whom they depend for their livelihood.

Okay–I know you will be surprised when I say that isn’t the part I agree with.

And there was something about transgendered use of bathrooms–for some reason, the “Christian” right is absolutely fixated on bathrooms. I don’t agree with that, either–I don’t even understand that.

Here’s the part I agree with: “A church should not be punished because they refuse to let the church be used for a homosexual wedding!”

I totally agree with that. So does every U.S. court that ever addressed the issue. There’s this pesky little clause in the First Amendment called the Free Exercise Clause, that for some reason Eric Miller must have missed in law school–and among other things, it absolutely protects churches from having to perform rituals that are contrary to their beliefs.

I’m sure that when Eric Miller learns about that bit of what we lawyers call “blackletter” law (so called because such legal principles are so settled and foundational), he’ll amend his fundraising email.

And pigs will fly…..


  1. Our Constitution is clear about the Government having no role in religion. Of course government also has obligations to govern we, the people, all of us equally, while some of us happen to belong (that word chosen carefully) to this religion or that. Those people sometimes portray their religion as a selective shield from government which is why we need courts to judge.

    That, of course brings us to the NRA and G.O.P. Both in the business of pseudo-religion. The selling of good and evil as a tactic to serve their customers (the gun and oligarchy industries respectively). Religions, and the NRA and G.O.P. businesses, trade their adherent numbers for revenue just like all brand marketed businesses.

    To prosper those particular businesses need to select their particular goods and evils carefully. The goods have to include a respectable base of people who can be claimed while the evil must be portrayable as a sizable threat. So the selection process is an integral component of strategy and also considers various possible alliances among businesses like these. For instance both the NRA and the G.O.P. claim God from the religious folks in exchange for other goods and evils from their inventory,

    Another criteria is power. Choose your goods and evils considering their power in society. Thus the wealthy are universally good while homosexuals, blacks, immigrants, women, workers are popular evils.

    Ain’t culture grand?

  2. BTW, homosexuals used to avoid being used as evil by staying in the closet. Effective but harder to do if one is easily identifiable as a women and other races are.

  3. Of course Muslim women have accepted a sort of closet behavior by the dress that their particular religion requires of them but I’m thinking that that makes them even more identifiable and easier to portray a mysterious evil, no?

  4. Mr. Miller is pandering to those with minds so closed and frightened that they have to manufacture “facts” to support their nightmares. The scenarios he conjures for the homophobic members of his group are fuel to make this non-issue a fund-raising machine. He knows exactly what he is doing, as most propagandists do. It is remarkable that, in this day and age with information available at our fingertips, so many fall for his nonsense. He is the quintessential snake-oil vender, making claims he cannot prove to sell a flawed idea.

    Mr. Schneider is represents my district but, most definitely, not me. He is an embarrassment. I will definitely work hard to get him out of office asap.

  5. As Clarence Darrow said during the Scopes trial, fanaticism and ignorance are forever busy and need feeding.

  6. If the First Amendment protects the collective, in this case the Church, how can it not protect the individual?

  7. @Jim Lucas A business is not an individual. A professional business is a community benefit requires a licence to serve the public. A business is a privilege.

  8. I think most business owners understand that it’s not smart to discriminate openly against people who might want to buy your products. Make a stink about not serving gays or any group and you may end up serving nobody, so the open market can work to serve the common good. You don’t want to serve gays, blacks, women, teachers, lawyers, Catholics, Baptists, whatever? The only people you may serve will be the ones serving the citation.

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