Writing in the Weekly Standard, Gallagher saw the end of adoptions services by Boston Catholic Charities as a foreshadowing of things to come.(To retain its license, Gallagher explained, the agency would have to abide by the state’s anti-discrimination law, which had been extended to married same-sex couples.) She couched her warning in the form of a question: This March, then, unexpectedly, a mere two years after the introduction of gay marriage in America, a number of latent concerns about the impact of this innovation on religious freedom ceased to be theoretical.The First Amendment, we are told, will protect religious groups from persecution for their views about marriage. Is the fate of Catholic Charities of Boston an aberration or a sign of things to come?
“As a result of their power, homosexual activists are able to intimidate and silence opposition.” Such fundamental clashes are linked to the spreading legalization of same-sex marriage.
Of the 11 total cases cited above, three occurred within two years of their state legalizing same-sex marriage. Four others were in states that did not have same-sex marriage but had granted some legal recognition to same-sex unions, such as domestic partnerships or civil unions.
One of the women had filed a complaint with the state Human Rights Commission, which ruled against the photographers in 2008, prompting an appeals process that led to the high court decision. (Sources: press releases and news reports including the Catholic News Agency and the Santa Fe New Mexican.
The case is discussed further below.) ■ Arlene’s Flowers, Washington: A florist refused to provide flowers to a gay wedding last March and now owner Baronelle Stutzman is facing a lawsuit from the state Attorney General.
(Sources: The New York Times here and here, Philadelphia Inquirer, and Life Site News.) ■ Elane Photography, New Mexico: The state Supreme Court ruled in August that a New Mexico photography business owned by Elaine Huguenin and her husband Jon could not legally deny services to same-sex couples.