Richard Thompson whines about “Anti-Christian Trend in Federal Courts.”

Seems Richard Thompson of the Thomas More Law Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan (proving that even my state has its fair share of religious nuts) is upset that the Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal of a Second Circuit Court of Appeals decision that decided “it was constitutionally permissible to exclude the Scouts from a state charitable program because the Scouts excluded avowed homosexuals from leadership positions.” Combined with another recent ruling by the SC two weeks ago (Davey v. Locke) that held it was Constitutional for the State of Washington to withdraw a scholarship from a student who decided to major in Theology, Thompson has decided that the Supreme Court is now firmly in the Anti-Christian camp.

Supreme Courts Rejection of Boy Scouts Appeal Signals Disturbing Anti-Christian Trend in Federal Courts

“The Court’s refusal to hear the Boy Scouts appeal, coming on the heels of its recent decision approving state discrimination against a Christian theology student, is evidence of a disturbing anti-Christian trend in the federal courts. It suggests that the Supreme Court has taken sides in the Culture War facing our nation.”

The Thomas More Law Center, a national public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan had filed amicus briefs in both cases. In the Boy Scouts case, the Law Center pointed out, “The Second Circuit’s opinion threatens not only the First Amendment right to expressive association, but also the First Amendment right to free exercise of religion. This opinion adversely affects the First Amendment rights of the Boy Scouts, and it has far reaching implications that could threaten the constitutional rights of religious-based organizations that seek to promote and preserve their organizational values, particularly with regard to the issue of homosexuality.”

In other words, because they didn’t decide in favor of the Christians in these cases then they must be anti-Christian!

It would seem that Mr. Thompson thinks that it should be OK for the Boy Scouts to discriminate against others, but shouldn’t be discriminated against themselves. I fail to see how the Second Circuit’s opinion in any way threatens the BSA’s First Amendment rights of expressive association and free exercise of religion as the decision doesn’t say the BSA is restricted from those rights, all it says is the State isn’t Constitutionally obligated to include the BSA in a state charitable program if the State disagrees with the BSA’s policies. In other words, the State is free to exclude the BSA in the same way that the BSA is free to exclude homosexuals and atheists.

Fair is fair after all, but then I suspect Mr. Thompson and the BSA don’t want things to be fair, they just want things to be in their favor. Thompson resorts to pointing out that the BSA was allowed to participate in the program for 30 years before this became an issue in a classic example of the fallacy of argumentum ad antiquitatem.

Thompson had earlier criticized Connecticut for pandering to the homosexual agenda by punishing the Scouts for exercising their constitutional rights, “Permitting this decision [Second Circuit Court of Appeals] to stand would in effect allow governments to legally extort organizations and individuals to give up basic beliefs.”

No, all it means is that the Government isn’t compelled to support organizations with basic beliefs the government doesn’t agree with. If they want to exercise their Constitutionally protected right to discriminate then they need to understand that they don’t have a Constitutionally protected right to government funding. Natch.

4 thoughts on “Richard Thompson whines about “Anti-Christian Trend in Federal Courts.”

  1. Ok - call me biased - but if I see one of thoses fishes in an ad for any type of business, I just don’t want to go there. Seems to me that the folks who spout and tout Christianity as all that are the ones that just don’t live up to what being a Christian is all about. Maybe it’s because I live in the south now that I feel this way. Maybe not. But just because they say they use a holy book to guide their fate doesn’t make them any better than the rest of us who have a different book, or no book at all. I am pleased to hear the justice system is being fair, like it should be.

  2. Actually, it’s less that the state is allowed to discriminate, than that the state isn’t allowed to support groups that discriminate. 

    If the state chose to exclude the BSA from their office charity list simply because they identified themselves as Christian, that would be illegal discrimination.  If they exclude them because they pursue discriminatory practices themselves (e.g., if, rather than excluding gays, they excluded blacks, or Jews), even if those discriminatory practices are legal for a private group (as the Supremes have also ruled), that’s legal discrimination.

    Now, some may argue that it is because of their religious beliefs that the BSA excludes gays from leadership roles, and thus this amounts to religious discrimination.  But it is the actions, not the motivations, that are being excluded here.  If the BSA excluded gays from leadership roles solely because they thought gays were icky, or because they thought it would help them avoid law suits, or because they feared AIDS infections, or whatever other reason, goofy or reasoned, it would matter no more or less in this context—it’s the end result that matters.

    That said, the BSA is certainly within their rights to associate however they want.  They do not automatically have a right to get support from the state in doing so.

  3. Catholics are Christians.  And how many Catholic Priests are allowed to associate with or direct Boy Scouts? 

    I am not calling all Catholic Priests homosexual but, buy their actions, some obviously are. 

    Or is it that it is ok to be homosexual, or a rapist, if you hide it behind a religious title Or possibly it is ok because it can be justified as the “freedom of expression” guaranteed by the first ammendment.

  4. Edward, you’re combining at least two separate issues.

    Is it okay to sexually abuse children? Of course not, nor is that action protected by amendments to the Constitution.

    Is it okay to be homosexual and a Christian at the same time? Yes, in my opinion, if you can manage that dichotomy.

    Is it okay to be a rapist if you’re a priest? No, there is no prerequisite that justifies rape.

    Is being a rapist the same as being homosexual. Never! Pedophilia is a sexual disorder; homosexuality isn’t. According to Wikipedia:

    Pedophilia (American English), pædophilia/paedophilia (Commonwealth English), or pedosexuality is the paraphilia of being sexually attracted primarily or exclusively to prepubescent children.

    *************

    In 1970, a national survey in that year found that more than 70% of respondents agreed with the assertions that “Homosexuals are dangerous as teachers or youth leaders because they try to get sexually involved with children” or that “Homosexuals try to play sexually with children if they cannot get an adult partner.”

    However, public perception has changed since then. Gallup polls have found that increasing number of Americans would allow gay people to be elementary school teachers. For example, the proportion was 61% in 2003, compared to 27% in 1977.

    In another poll conducted in 1999, the belief that most gay men are likely to molest or abuse children was endorsed by only 19% of heterosexual men and 10% of heterosexual women. Even fewer – 9% of men and 6% of women – regarded most lesbians as child molesters.

    Desire to molest children is contradistinct sexual motivation and many would even say pedophilia is not a sexual inclination desiring expression at all but an authority and power seeking ploy. This might help explain why priests are too often child molesters as they are the epitome of an authority figure to many.

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