Kim Davis is a public figure number one in the United States now, everyone and their mother knows who she is.
Davis shot to fame after refusing to grant licences to same sex couples in the Kentucky county clerk office, in defiance of the United States Supreme Court ruling in Obegerfell vs Hodges that established same sex marriage as the law of the land.
Davis’ entire argument is that same sex marriages violates the law of God, and she cannot as a Christian grant those licences as it would violate her conscience. She has the right to that belief.
The United States has the separation, which should be the ideal for any nation hoping to really progress. Cases like that of Kim Davis illustrate this point very well.
As government employees, you are entitled to hold whatever beliefs you want to hold, you have that right. But your foremost duty is to uphold the laws of the land, and treat everybody fairly. The laws are made looking at the well being of everyone, and not just a particular class who believe they should have the monopoly on how laws should be enacted.
Most countries has within it people from all beliefs and backgrounds. There are Christians, Muslims, non believers, and a whole spectrum that cannot be covered here. The law must cater to every segment of these people, which is why the state must be above all, neutral in its dealings.
It is not always that way of course, but to the best of everyone’s abilities you try to uphold it. That is the ideal of a democracy, when the wall comes down we venture into theocracy.
Let me just list a couple of theocracies the world over; we have Iran and Saudi Arabia. The end goal of the Islamic State is a worldwide theocracy, the Islamic caliphate that is often the end goal of these jihadist terrorist organisations.
Those are the kind of societies in which the laws are supposedly God’s laws. Usually, there is a man standing at the top of the pile dictating to everyone what God’s laws are. And most often they are restrictive, to minorities, to women and children, and to the free expression needed to run a fair society.
The founding fathers of the United States had the foresight all those years ago to establish it as a secular country, learning from the example of Britain who has always blurred those lines. It led them down the road of gradually giving rights to minorities- women, slaves, and lately the LGBT’s.
Each time it was done through the courts, and each time people stuck in the past fought it with all their might. Kim Davis might think she is fighting the Lord’s fight, but she would do better to read her civil rights history and learn to respect the church/state wall.
She wishes she was in a Christian country, were the courts would criminalise being gay. But if we’re being honest such a hypothetical country could criminalise divorce, adultery, disobedience to parents, and a million other things that the Christian Bible frowns upon. That would be an unstable country to live in, and would especially lead to terrible treatment meted out to non religious people or people of other faiths and still having the feeling that is justified.
The state has to stay above all that; giving room to every faith to flourish but never giving prominence to any. That is the way forward.
I cannot believe I have to explain this to people in the 21st century.