Comments about ‘Colliding causes: Gay rights and religious liberty’

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Published: Saturday, Feb. 11 2012 1:00 p.m. MST

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A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT


Except that the freedom to make those choices is more often being scrutinized. I don't force gay activists to place a Mormon at the top of their organization, nor do I have the right to. If this were reversed and the people shouting 'discrimination!' actually were fed their own medicine, they would see this doctrine clearly. Freedom goes both ways. Eventually everyone will be aware of the truth. People ultimately reap what they sew. If you deny my beliefs, then fine. But if people will that they should live according to certain principles, it is only just that when they force those laws on everyone else that they in the end will be required to live by the same doctrines. In the end, everyone will be consigned to the fruits of their labors.


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has given reasons why it's position is maintained. It isn't because of legal impact, but because according to our doctrines, God's laws, and what we believe is right and best for all mankind is adherence to the basic principles of our existence- which is the divine design of the family. It is most sacred. No other unit can foster eternal happiness in this life and throughout eternity. For this reason, we affirm our position to protect and promote this true governing principle of happiness.

Tooele, UT


I rarely if ever discuss same-sex marriage with family or friends for the very reason you mentioned.

I remember after Boyd K. Packer's General Conference talk awhile back that stirred a lot of controversy in the gay community, some of my Facebook friends on both sides got into some pretty heated and at times nasty arguments of President Packer's talks.

For the most part, I chose to stay out of it.

I have my convictions and beliefs which I take seriously, but not to the point that I will throw insults and make wild accusations against those who disagree with me.

Utes Fan
Salt Lake City, UT

A few points:

1) That a business or person who offers a service to the public should be forced by law to cater to gay-marriage clients is a violation of freedom. The article makes the excellent point that when those discrimination laws were put in place, gay marriage wasn't part of the equation. We didn't have the option then, really, to lobby for the laws to include individual protection on the grounds of religious beliefs. And, might I add, the photographer, hotel owners, etc were not using public moneys like Catholic Services.

2) That the Deseret News is somehow "biased" by covering the points in this article is nonsense. Given that the mostly left-wing based media has covered the pro-gay marriage news far more, especially the Salt Lake Tribune, I wholly welcome the coverage of the religious point of view, and think that just a little bit of balance is long-overdue. And I think it is about time these issues are thoroughly covered. As such, we can see that it is CLEAR that those who are concerned about the advancement of gay marriage into our laws have LEGITIMATE reasons to oppose it, not just based on religious beliefs, and especially not because of hatred and bigotry. I would hope that making the legal issues better known would cut down on the cries of bigotry and hatred, and at least, even if you disagree, see that religious people do indeed have a true concern.

Dart Thrower
Ogden, UT

I perceive that Christians hold up this story of an example of how their world is somehow being compromised by Gays or others that don't adhere to their particular Christian view. But they should step back and see the impact of this type of self righteous treatment of others on the big mission - spreading the Gospel. Almost every non-member in Utah was told, sometime in their youth, by an LDS friend, that "Sorry, my parents won't let us play with non-members". I am sure these LDS parents somehow felt like they were really showing their devotion to the Gospel and holding to the iron rod, but their actions are emotionally devastating to non-members and create lifelong negative feelings towards LDS members. The New Testament is laden with teachings to "love one another", "love thy neighbor as thyself" and "judge not that ye not be judged". Yet well meaning Christian continually stick their faith in the faces of people they deem unworthy with the message that "we're better than you". Be humble. Think of the big picture. Love first and long.

The Rock
Federal Way, WA

Is discrimination wrong? Yes and No.

We are all God's children. We need to remember the teachings of Christ; "In as much as yea do it unto the least of these, my brethren, ye have done it unto me."

I have no desire to make life hard on anyone. Most people create their own problems and punish themselves far more than I could.

For a business to turn away customers only because of race or religion might be reprehensible. I know a young lady who was raped. She got a good look at her assailant. She is mortally afraid of men of that race. To ask her to set her feeling aside is asking a lot.

Personally I am sick and tired of people from certain religious persuasions telling me that I am not a Christian and a member of a cult. It would be very tempting to not accept them as customers. (I do get a certain satisfaction out of taking their money and sending it to LDS Missionaries. I love getting to finance my religion.)

Discrimination and Decide come from a common Latin Root.
You cannot make a single decision that effects another without discriminating. When I eat at Denny's I am discriminating against The Olive Garden.

Freedom is the right to make our own choices. Anti Discrimination laws amount to giving certain groups the "right" to make the choices of others.

Outlaw discrimination and you outlaw freedom.

Murray, Utah

Private business should have the rights and freedom to choose clients they serve just like the public has the right to not choose a business because of those choices they have made. I would never sue a baptist if they didn't want to take pictures at my mormon wedding.

Am I going to eventually be sued for not buying services from a gay/lesbian business if I choose not too? Sounds pretty silly doesn't it.

Here, UT

The law requires that businesses not discriminate against anybody. What is so hard about that. If you can't run your business without discriminating against some people, you are better off not opening a business.

"...that defends the right of individuals to freely live their faith."

--- Does living your faith require you to be a bigot? I don't think so.

"Supporters of the Proposition have been labeled bigots and even attacked, and their churches have been picketed and vandalized."

--- Proof please.

"Catholic Charities of Illinois lost millions in state funding when they refused to place children with homosexual couples. Catholic Charities of Massachusetts stopped doing adoptions in 2006 for the same reason..."

--- You can't take tax payer money and refuse to service some of those very taxpayers.

"The (LDS) Church supports this ordinance because it is fair and reasonable and does not do violence to the institution of marriage,"

--- Same sex couples getting married does not "do violence" to marriage either; on the other hand, heterosexual divorce does.

This article is really very one-sided, DN. Why not include the other half of the argument. That tax money can't be taken if you want to discriminate against glbt couples. The pavilion received a tax-break for being a "public place" and then they want to discrminate against gays too? No.

Catholic charities take tax money and want to discrminate against gay couples? No.

Some of that tax money comes from glbt people. The LDS Church refuses to adopt to gay couples too, but they do it on their own dime; which is fine. They'll never be required to allow same-sex weddings in their chapels or temples. Never.

I don't care if religious people want to discriminate against glbt americans in their homes and churches. If you run a business, you can not discrminate. Otherwise religion becomes an excuse to discriminate. Today it's discrimination against gays. Tomorrow it'll be discrmination against Muslims. The next day it'll be discrmination against blacks; "my religion says blacks are descendents of Cain, I can't support descendents of a murderer". And on and on and on. All in the name of "religion".

deep in thought
Salt Lake, UT

OK, so I know this is a heated topic but I have to comment on this whole Prop 8 thing.

So...does this mean in a few years in our public schools we have sex education on both hetero and homo-sexual relationships? Are school dances open to both homo and hetero-sexual couples? Are many more kids growing up from a very young age dealing with an identity crisis and gender identity decisions because homosexuality is being taught so openly? Schools are federally funded so I can see that they would need to follow suit with any decisions being made.

I don't really get comments that say, "this doesn't affect me and my marriage." They seem a little short sighted. This is going to affect our children and their marriages and our grandchildren profoundly.

Heber City, UT

Not so deep in thought - another suggested edit: This is going to affect our children and their marriages and our grandchildren (not at all).

My gay brother's decade-long partnership has not affected his six sibling's marriages in any way -- except that they have another happy, loving person to share all family activities with. And have learned to speak out against naive comments that have no basis in fact. You're right, however, that it will affect their lives. For the better. The same way accepting diversity has throughout American history.


Curious what the law would say if this couple had advertised to photograph only christian weddings? Would there be reason to sue them for religious discrimination on the basis of atheist exclusion or muslim exclusion?

What about going into business only to photograph weddings for couples over the age of 50? Would that be age discrimination? What if they refused service to a Mormon wedding. Is that open to suit on the basis of religious descrimination? Something smell fishy here.

Theirs is a service business not a public convenience business. It is an issue of right of association. It is not taxpayer funded. It is not a walk in business which relies on public accomodation. Legally, please show me why this couple cannot offer their services to anyone they choose or not choose?

No opinions please. Cite me legal precedent other than the overreaching government entity which fined them $6,000.00 for refusing to support the GLBT.

South Jordan, UT

Can someone explain to me why we give churches tax breaks that other institutions do not receive? Also, organizing a boycott because a business's values do not coincide with yours has been a tactic long used by Christian conservatives, and is entirely legal.

Let's not confuse religious freedom with religious popularity.

Idaho Falls, ID

@Clarkhippo Cleaning a lesbians house is different from taking pictures of their wedding- usually kissing and embracing are involved in the photographs. It's hard to define the difference but it's there.

West Jordan, UT

This is the liberal agenda, to cry individual rights when they believe one party is discriminated against and then throw lawsuits at anyone who will not follow what they believe to be right. It is hypocrisy in its purest form.

Bountiful, UT

If I were to be the judge of the situation where the lady in New Mexico said she couldn't photograph a gay wedding because it conflicted with here religious beliefs It might go something like this.

me: Why did you refuse to photograph a gay wedding.

her: It violates my religious beliefs.

me: can you elaborate.

her: yes, homosexuality violates teachings in the bible.

me: Suppose your sister or one of your roomates from college had been divorced, and was getting remarried, would you object to photograph their wedding?


option 1

her: yes I would, the Bible teaches women who have been divorced are not to remarry.

me: you win the case, you can not photograph the wedding and suffer no penalty from the law.


option 2

her: I would have no problem with photographing her wedding because she was divorced. As a matter of fact, I myself am living with my 2nd husband.

me: The Bible teaches married women not to remarry. It appears you pick and choose what you want to believe or act upon from the Bible. Either that or you don't care enough to learn what it says. You must photograph the wedding or be fined.

Sorry Charlie!

@the rock

once again as has been pointed out to you over and over again discrimination and decide do not come from a common Latin Root. Seriously at this point you are just rendering your arguments meaningless by repeating this same distortion over and over again.

South Jordan, UT

Chik-Fil-A is a christian owned company. What if they suddenly decided to stop serving mormons or black people? Nobody is talking about forcing a private religious entity to minister to gays. But if you are taking public money or operating a business in the public, anti-discrimination laws do apply. And that doesn't affect your religious freedom. You are free to choose to close your business out of moral beliefs.

Captain Moroni
Provo, UT

What happen to the "right" to refuse service?


@captain Moroni

your right to refuse services does not extend to violating others civil rights. ever heard of lunch counter sit ins? try to catch up.

Morgan Hill, CA

This is an example of why I contribute frequently to the Alliance Defense Fund and will continue to do so. Liberals were all for freedom of conscience during the 1960s when they were protesting against the draft and the Vietnam War. Now, however, their commitment to that concept seems to have mysteriously diminished.

Moral standards are, by nature and definition, discriminatory - distinguishing between courses of action and behavior as differentiated from other courses of action and behavior. Individuals are within their rights to make such judgments and religious denominations are within their rights to advocate such standards publicly.

Iowa, Iowa

I don't care what you do in your own home with two consenting adults but I do care if you want to force me to take pictures of it or provide cake for it.

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