“God made me do it” Canadian couple ordered to pay gay couple damages

From the Vancouver Sun:

A retired Grand Forks couple who would not allow two gay men to stay in their bed and breakfast has to pay the men more than $4,500, the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal has ruled.

Les and Susan Molnar, who owned the now-closed River-bed Bed and Breakfast, held “sincere religious beliefs” opposing same-sex relation-ships when they cancelled reservations for Shaun Eadie and Brian Thomas in July 2009 after learning the couple was gay, tribunal member Enid Marion said in a decision this week.

The judge (or whatever) disagreed.

“Having entered into the commercial sphere, the Mol-nars, like other business people, were required to comply with the laws of the province … that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation,” Marion wrote.

It’s the latest vogue among thumpers to claim that they’re exempt from federal and state law so long as they invoke some “religious” reason. A notion that’s not only absurd, but downright scary when you consider the implications. Where do you draw the line in terms of who’s permitted to stop offering public accommodations in the name of God? Can Christians turn Muslims away from hospitals, and banks, and pharmacies – and most certainly from our nice clean Christian swimming pools?

There has never been a religious exemption to law.  You don’t get to conscientiously object to a civil rights law.  That’s the whole point of civil rights laws – that the haters tend to use God to justify their hatred (against blacks, Jews, women, Muslims, etc.) and the state isn’t going to permit it.

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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