Writing for the Huffington Post, Christian blogger Chris Boeskool could not have expressed his disagreement with jailed county clerk Kim Davis any more clearly.
The article was titled, “4 Reasons – From A Christian Perspective – Why Kim Davis Is 100% Wrong,” and Boeskool states at the end of the first paragraph (in bold caps, as here): “HERE IS WHY SHE IS EMPIRICALLY, COMPLETELY, OBJECTIVELY, AND, IN ALL OTHER WAYS, 100% WRONG.” (All quotes in bold or caps in this article are original with Mr. Boeskool.)
Now, from the viewpoint of winning a debate, this is bad strategy, since when you make such sweeping, dogmatic claims, if your opponent can poke one hole in one of the arguments, you lose.
But in the spirit of Mr. Boeskool’s article, I decided to respond in kind, explaining why he’s 100% wrong on all points raised.
First, he claims that LOGIC is against Kim Davis, since, if you worked at a restaurant that started to sell alcohol, but you as a Christian believed it was sin, “What you DON’T do is you don’t go into work and refuse to sell people alcohol — claiming ‘religious freedom’ — and expect to keep your job.”
Actually, this is a very poor argument.
A better argument would be this: Let’s say you’re a Muslim serving as a religion editor for the Huffington Post and your boss comes in and says, “We’ve now changed our policy and we are going to begin to publish mocking cartoons of Muhammad as part of our new campaign to expose Islam as a hate-filled religion.”
Would anyone logically expect you to say, “No problem, I’ll get right to that”? And would anyone be surprised if you raised the issue of “religious freedom” in protesting this policy to your employers?
All that being said, neither of these cases really parallels the Kim Davis situation, since she has a stronger case than even the Muslim editor would, but the logic is against Boeskool’s position, not for him.
Second, he claims that HYPOCRISY proves Davis wrong, and here he makes one wrong statement after another: 1) He claims the Bible says nothing about same-sex “marriage,” whereas the Bible plainly ordains marriage as the lifelong union of a man and woman (see Genesis 2 and Matthew 19) and plainly condemns all homosexual acts. Even in the case of non-ideal marriages (like polygamous unions), they all presuppose male-female marriage, as surely as elephants are not mice and ants are not giraffes. 2) He is right in highlighting the Bible’s strong condemnation of divorce (with rare exceptions), but he forgets that Kim Davis had her multiple divorces before coming to faith in Jesus, at which point she began a new life as a forgiven person. 3) He is right in saying that the Bible calls us to obey the laws of the government, but on numerous occasions, the Scriptures teach us that sometimes we have to disobey the government in order to obey God. 4) He claims that women should not be in positions of authority, which is not true. They are not to have certain leadership roles in the church, but there’s nothing that restricts them from other leadership roles, including in the secular world, and one of Israel’s greatest leaders in history was a woman named Deborah.
So far, there are two strikes against Boeskool.
Third, he argues that CONFUSION proves Davis wrong, but I must say that his arguments are completely confusing as he claims that she has no right to deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples based on her religion. He writes, “This is the same mentality of the people who are opposing anti-bullying legislation on the grounds that they believe they should be allowed to bully gay kids as a part of the Christian expression of their beliefs. Just because you belong to some freaky ‘religion’ that views forced sex with strangers as an act of worship, it doesn’t give you the right to go around raping people.”
This is utter nonsense. I’ve never met a single Christian in the world who believes that they should be allowed to bully gay kids, let alone as an expression of their faith. I know many (including me) who say we should teach aggressively against bullying of all kids without having to celebrate homosexuality (in other words, teach that bullying is bad rather than gay is good). As for his comment about a ‘freaky “religion” that views forced sex with strangers as an act of worship,” what “religion is he talking about? This makes less than no sense.
Not only so, but contrary to the bizarre examples used by Boeskool, until the last few years, heterosexual marriage was the only form of marriage recognized in the United States (as well as worldwide, throughout virtually all history) and the people of Kentucky overwhelmingly voted to reinforce this in 2004, while Kim Davis, not to mention four justices on the Supreme Court, do not believe that the Court had the power to redefine marriage. So, Davis is submitting to the law of Kentucky, to the Constitution (which was misused by Justice Kennedy in his dissenting opinion), and to God’s higher law in refusing to issue marriage certificates to same-sex couples, while the governor is refusing (to date) to come up with a very simple accommodation to her religious beliefs, as the law also requires him to do (since there is no undue hardship in making such accommodation for her).
So, three strikes and Chris Boeskool is out – except he has a fourth and final point, namely that INTEGRITY requires Davis to step down if she can’t do her job (rather than refuse to issue marriage certificates and still get paid), writing, “That’s not ‘Christian.’ That’s extortion.”
Actually, she sits in jail right now because of her Christian integrity, as it would have been so much easier for her to yield to the pressure, avoid the public scrutiny and attacks, and, of course, avoid having to sit in jail. You don’t do that for convenience.
Plus, she performed all of her other duties as county clerk, and if anyone (heterosexual or homosexual) wanted a marriage license, they simply had to drive over to the next county and get one issued there.
I’m sure all this has cost her a lot more emotional trauma than her salary could compensate for, which means that, again, the integrity argument supports her, not refutes her.
In conclusion, from a Christian perspective, Chris Boeskool is 100% wrong about Kim Davis.