Same-sex marriage combined with nondiscrimination policies will result in significant discrimination against individuals and institutions that hold to the belief that marriage is—and should be defined in law as—the union of one man and one woman.
In the latest illustration of how this will happen, a Chicago alderman recently explained that he plans to block the chicken restaurant Chick-fil-A from building a new restaurant in his ward because he is offended by the belief of the company’s owners that marriage is between one man and one woman.
“There are consequences for one’s actions, statements and beliefs,” the official stated. “Because of this man’s ignorance, I will deny Chick-fil-A a permit to open a restaurant in my ward.”
Under pressure, this official might attempt to alter his rationale for targeting Chick-fil-A—or even back down altogether like the mayor of Boston did when he was criticized for targeting Chick-fil-A in his city.
However it turns out, though, the Chick-fil-A situation certainly adds to the growing list of cases illustrating how individuals and institutions that continue to support marriage as one man and one woman will likely face a variety of significant burdens:
- A Christian photographer in New Mexico who refused to photograph a same-sex commitment ceremony was hauled before a human rights tribunal and forced to pay nearly $6,700 in attorneys’ fees to the complainant;
- Christian charities have been forced to stop providing foster care and adoption services because they cannot in good conscience comply with laws that would require them to violate beliefs about marriage and family;
- Boy Scouts of America has lost equal access to public facilities and programs because of its position on open homosexuality;
- A graduate student claims that she was expelled from a public university counseling program after she conscientiously objected to counseling a potential client seeking assistance regarding a homosexual relationship; and
- A Christian organization at a public university was denied official recognition because it required officers and voting members to adhere to traditional Christian teachings, including a prohibition on extramarital sex.
This is not “live and let live.” This is the state—and sometimes private citizens and the culture at large—punishing people who refuse to recant their belief that marriage is the union of a husband and wife.
This kind of thing happens because proponents of same-sex marriage declare support for marriage as one man and one woman to be a form of irrational prejudice and bigotry similar to racism. In this view, support for marriage as one man and one woman is the kind of belief that should be purged from public life through legal, cultural, and economic pressure.
This is precisely what is happening right now to Chick-fil-A.
Defending marriage takes courage. For more stories of people who have demonstrated courage in standing for marriage as one man and one woman, visit the website of the Marriage Anti-Defamation Alliance, a group that stands up for people who stand up for marriage.