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Town clerk: I will not issue marraige licenses

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actuarial

Platinum Member
Jan 22, 2009
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That's absolute right. The core issue here is those gay activist don't tolerate anyone with opposite view while they criticize other people are intolerant. What a bunch of hypocrites.

This lady didn't try to force her view on anyone, she let her deputy do the job. She wasn't trying to make political statement. If those activist wasn't trying to sue her and get her fired, not that many people would know about it. Couples (both straight and gay) will file application the same, the deputy will get those processed the same.

Funny how those who chant tolerance are often first to attack those that holds a different view.
You're not entirely on the mark here. If she wasn't trying to make a political statement, then how does anyone know why she delegated the duties?

Those people who are suing knew about it before even going to the office, so that's not why people know.

I'm against firing her as long as all people got their licences, but it seems this couple didn't. The article is clearly lacking in facts.

And finally, if you support her right to speak out against gay marriages, why don't you support the right of people to speak out against her?
 

rchiu

Diamond Member
Jun 8, 2002
3,850
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You're not entirely on the mark here. If she wasn't trying to make a political statement, then how does anyone know why she delegated the duties?

Those people who are suing knew about it before even going to the office, so that's not why people know.

I'm against firing her as long as all people got their licences, but it seems this couple didn't. The article is clearly lacking in facts.

And finally, if you support her right to speak out against gay marriages, why don't you support the right of people to speak out against her?
First, I am not convinced she is even "speaking" out, she is just doing what she believe in while finding other ways for the licensed to be issued. Again, she ask her deputy to take care of both straight and gay marriage license (as in op's article), so even there is no discrimination.

Second, activists are not just "speaking out" against her, they are trying to file suits and getting her fired.

See the difference there?
 

Rainsford

Lifer
Apr 25, 2001
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First, I am not convinced she is even "speaking" out, she is just doing what she believe in while finding other ways for the licensed to be issued. Again, she ask her deputy to take care of both straight and gay marriage license (as in op's article), so even there is no discrimination.

Second, activists are not just "speaking out" against her, they are trying to file suits and getting her fired.

See the difference there?
I suppose the question is to what degree your personal beliefs can dictate what parts of your job you choose to perform. Not working on Saturday because you're Jewish seems reasonable, a police officer refusing to investigate crimes against black people because he's a member of the KKK does not seem reasonable.

Where do you draw the line? I'm not exactly sure, but I'd say it has to be a higher standard than "someone else took up my slack". After all, that gets you out of doing pretty much any work, as long as someone else steps in and does it for you.

Maybe a good standard would be whether or not your belief is preventing you from performing a job specific duty and the situation would not arise if you had a different job. Pacifists probably shouldn't join the army and the issue of violence would never come up, for instance. In this case, if this town clerk is SO opposed to gay marriage, there are plenty of jobs out there where such a belief wouldn't interfere with assigned work in the slightest. Holding a job where your beliefs prevent you from performing a job function would not seem on the reasonable side of reasonable accommodation.
 

Rainsford

Lifer
Apr 25, 2001
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My perception of this whole thing is that she felt it was wrong for her to issue the licenses to same sex couples, so she refused to do it. I don't think this is about "preaching."
I'm sorry, but any time some (legal) aspect of your job is troubling you and your method of dealing with it is to just stop performing that duty, you're making a statement. If she felt issuing licenses to same sex couples was wrong, she could easily have done so anyways while campaigning to get the law changed. Or she could have quit her job and taken one where her beliefs weren't directly opposed by her duties. But she didn't. Instead, she decided that her personal beliefs could define her job, which sends a message even if that wasn't exactly what she was trying to do.
 

rchiu

Diamond Member
Jun 8, 2002
3,850
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I suppose the question is to what degree your personal beliefs can dictate what parts of your job you choose to perform. Not working on Saturday because you're Jewish seems reasonable, a police officer refusing to investigate crimes against black people because he's a member of the KKK does not seem reasonable.

Where do you draw the line? I'm not exactly sure, but I'd say it has to be a higher standard than "someone else took up my slack". After all, that gets you out of doing pretty much any work, as long as someone else steps in and does it for you.

Maybe a good standard would be whether or not your belief is preventing you from performing a job specific duty and the situation would not arise if you had a different job. Pacifists probably shouldn't join the army and the issue of violence would never come up, for instance. In this case, if this town clerk is SO opposed to gay marriage, there are plenty of jobs out there where such a belief wouldn't interfere with assigned work in the slightest. Holding a job where your beliefs prevent you from performing a job function would not seem on the reasonable side of reasonable accommodation.
Again, how does her personal belief preventing her from performing her task? She delegated the task, which is normal part of every day business. Issuing marriage license is not the only thing she does, how her chose to handle certain job and delegate other is totally within her right.

This is no different than me having a conference call at 6PM with my oversea team, but I am commit to my family to have dinner with them and delegate the task to my team lead who is 100% capable of handling the task.

She is only being attack because 1) it's religious belief, and 2) anything remotely anti-homosexual is politically incorrect these day.

Let's be honest, if this does not involve religion and doesn't involve gay activist, no one will care when a town clerk delegate one of her many task to her deputy.
 

soundforbjt

Lifer
Feb 15, 2002
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Again, how does her personal belief preventing her from performing her task? She delegated the task, which is normal part of every day business. Issuing marriage license is not the only thing she does, how her chose to handle certain job and delegate other is totally within her right.
The law states only she (not a deputy) can issue marriage licenses.

She is breaking the law.
 

zsdersw

Lifer
Oct 29, 2003
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Or, delegate that responsibility to someone else, which is what she did. Except a bunch of oversensitive sheep got offended at her reason.
Except it's not at all clear, legally, that she can delegate that responsibility.
 

PokerGuy

Lifer
Jul 2, 2005
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Except it's not at all clear, legally, that she can delegate that responsibility.
That's the crux of the issue then. I don't know the specifics of the laws there, but if she can legally delegate those duties and she does so, the whiners should STFU and get lost. If she can't legally delegate those duties, then she needs to either start performing them or resign and move to a state that doesn't mandate such silly things.
 

zsdersw

Lifer
Oct 29, 2003
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That's the crux of the issue then. I don't know the specifics of the laws there, but if she can legally delegate those duties and she does so, the whiners should STFU and get lost.
We're not in disagreement on that.
 

actuarial

Platinum Member
Jan 22, 2009
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That's the crux of the issue then. I don't know the specifics of the laws there, but if she can legally delegate those duties and she does so, the whiners should STFU and get lost. If she can't legally delegate those duties, then she needs to either start performing them or resign and move to a state that doesn't mandate such silly things.
I agree she shouldn't get fired if she can legally delegate the responsibilities (and shouldn't get sued), but I don't agree that people need to STFU about it.

My question still stands: how does anyone know her reason for delegating the responsibility?

If you're in an elected office and choose to make a political statement, media/attention towards that statement is fair game.
 

PokerGuy

Lifer
Jul 2, 2005
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My question still stands: how does anyone know her reason for delegating the responsibility?
Does it really matter how someone would know? More than likely, she indicated to others why she was delegating those duties going forward, and that person blabbed to someone else, and then the PC police got wind of it.

If you're in an elected office and choose to make a political statement, media/attention towards that statement is fair game.
Media attention is fine, it's not the attention I have a problem with (even though I disagree with the PC stance), it's that they are suing and trying to remove her from the position.

I'd have a problem if she had said "these licenses are not getting issued under my watch!". As long as the licenses are getting issued, why does her personal belief matter?
 

werepossum

Elite Member
Jul 10, 2006
29,876
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Does it really matter how someone would know? More than likely, she indicated to others why she was delegating those duties going forward, and that person blabbed to someone else, and then the PC police got wind of it.

Media attention is fine, it's not the attention I have a problem with (even though I disagree with the PC stance), it's that they are suing and trying to remove her from the position.

I'd have a problem if she had said "these licenses are not getting issued under my watch!". As long as the licenses are getting issued, why does her personal belief matter?
I see two issues with this. First, as has been brought up it's not at all clear that she has that authority. This could conceivably affect a lot of married couples, not just gay couples. Second, there will definitely be times when she is the only one there with the authority to issue a marriage license. People have vacations, get sick, have official business in other locations. Should some people then be inconvenienced because she doesn't agree with the duties of her job?

Beyond that, I have a huge problem in principle with people announcing that for reasons of principle they are not going to do part of their job. If your religious or other moral compass will not in good conscious allow you to do part of your job, fine. I admire your convictions. Now shut the hell up, go away, and allow your job to pass to someone who can and will do it while you find another job more in line with your principles. Seriously, would we accept an official whose communist beliefs don't allow him to issue business licenses? This applies all the way up to the President announcing he is not going to enforce immigration law. (Not so much announcing that he will not defend the DOA Act; there's a subtle but hugely important distinction between not enforcing a law and refusing to defend it in court. Or maybe it's just my natural inclination to accept things like this when I'm in agreement . . .) :D
 

actuarial

Platinum Member
Jan 22, 2009
2,814
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Does it really matter how someone would know? More than likely, she indicated to others why she was delegating those duties going forward, and that person blabbed to someone else, and then the PC police got wind of it.
It matters in whether or not she's making a political statement. If the above is true then I'm less inclined to side with the outspoken, though I agree they still have the right to speak out.

Media attention is fine, it's not the attention I have a problem with (even though I disagree with the PC stance), it's that they are suing and trying to remove her from the position.

I'd have a problem if she had said "these licenses are not getting issued under my watch!". As long as the licenses are getting issued, why does her personal belief matter?
Yeah, I disagree with the suit as long as everyone got their licence that should. It seems the couple that is suing didn't though. The article seems to contradict itself in this case.

I agree she shouldn't be removed as long as everyone got their licence, and all of those licences are valid. I would agree there even if she only delegated gay licences, as long as they always got them and they are valid.
 

ch33zw1z

Lifer
Nov 4, 2004
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And how would I know that information?
From the story: After hearing the news, Florida couple Katie Carmichael and Deidre Dibiaggio, who have a home in Cayuga and are looking to get married, put Rose to the test.

"But I honestly thought that if Dee Dee and I were standing in front of her that there is no way this woman was going to break the law and not do that. So I was very disappointed,” explained Katie Carmichael.


This insinuates they somehow were not issued the marriage license at some point, and it appears to be related to the clerks personal beliefs. Do you disagree?
 

Munky

Diamond Member
Feb 5, 2005
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From the story: After hearing the news, Florida couple Katie Carmichael and Deidre Dibiaggio, who have a home in Cayuga and are looking to get married, put Rose to the test.

"But I honestly thought that if Dee Dee and I were standing in front of her that there is no way this woman was going to break the law and not do that. So I was very disappointed,” explained Katie Carmichael.


This insinuates they somehow were not issued the marriage license at some point, and it appears to be related to the clerks personal beliefs. Do you disagree?
Were they subsequently issued a license by her deputy? As long as the couple got their license, I don't care who issued it or who refused to issue it.
 

ch33zw1z

Lifer
Nov 4, 2004
30,865
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Were they subsequently issued a license by her deputy? As long as the couple got their license, I don't care who issued it or who refused to issue it.
I guess we'll have to wait and see what the courts decide the interpretation of the laws will be. If she has to issue the license to validate it, should be interesting.
 

Aikouka

Lifer
Nov 27, 2001
29,572
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thus ensuring that the public is not inconvenienced.
Given the article states that the deputy only issues licenses via appointment versus the clerk who would do it via what I assume is on a walk-in basis... I call that an inconvenience. ;)
 

Wreckem

Diamond Member
Sep 23, 2006
9,058
435
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At first I supported her, as she can choose to designate the responsibilities as long as that's allowed. Though there was no need to speak out about it (and she deserves all the negative attention she gets), it doesn't deserve getting fired.

But then, it said two women were denied their marriage certificate. That seems to be dereliction of duty.

So it's not clear to me whether or not someone who was qualified for a licence was denied. If they were, she should be fired. If not, she shouldn't.
The problem is, the letter of the law requires the Clerk, not a subordinate of the clerk, to witness the signing of the marriage certificate. Legally, the validity of all marriage licenses performed by the deputy could be called in to question.
 
Feb 6, 2007
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Who cares if she stopped issuing licenses. If she did it for any other reason, no one would have a problem with her deputy taking over the responsibility. But because her religious beliefs aren't in line with politically-correct sensitivity dogma, then all of a sudden it's an outrage. Guess what - if you want tolerance for homosexuals, then you gotta have tolerance for those who don't agree with your own beliefs.
What if the state had voted to make gay marriage illegal and a clerk who supported gay marriage decided they would no longer issue any marriage licenses (but it would be done through their deputy). Would you support that clerk's right to refuse to do part of their job because of their beliefs?
 

Munky

Diamond Member
Feb 5, 2005
9,379
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What if the state had voted to make gay marriage illegal and a clerk who supported gay marriage decided they would no longer issue any marriage licenses (but it would be done through their deputy). Would you support that clerk's right to refuse to do part of their job because of their beliefs?
Yes, and I guarantee, all the outrage of this thread will be directed elsewhere.
 

werepossum

Elite Member
Jul 10, 2006
29,876
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Yes, and I guarantee, all the outrage of this thread will be directed elsewhere.
Not all. My outrage would still be directed at the clerk. I suspect the outrage of those opposing gay marriage would replace that of those supporting gay marriage, but I think you'd find a lot of us outraged at any official who declares she will not do the job for which she doubtless still wants to be paid.
 
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Lithium381

Lifer
May 12, 2001
12,464
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Two different things..... a legal marriage and a holy marriage . . . . one is made by man and is a peice of paper, the other is done in a church in accordance to ones beliefs)

separate things
 

zsdersw

Lifer
Oct 29, 2003
10,560
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Two different things..... a legal marriage and a holy marriage . . . . one is made by man and is a peice of paper, the other is done in a church in accordance to ones beliefs)

separate things
Of what relevance is that? Show me heterosexual couples who only have a "holy marriage".
 

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