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Cruz keeps on trolling along

For a guy who’s supposed to be so freaking brilliant, Ted Cruz sure says a lot of stupid things.

Not Ted Cruz

Not Ted Cruz

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz on Saturday said county clerks in Texas should “absolutely” be able to opt out of issuing same-sex marriage licenses if they have religious objections.

“Ours is a country that was built by men and women fleeing religious oppression,” Cruz said in an interview with The Texas Tribune, “and you look at the foundation of this country — it was to seek out a new land where anyone of us could worship the Lord God Almighty with all of our hearts, minds and souls, without government getting in the way.”

The interview followed a major speech here in which he eviscerated the U.S. Supreme Court for its decision Friday to legalize gay marriage in all 50 states.

“We should respect diversity and tolerance,” Cruz added. “There is this liberal intolerance and fascism that seeks to force Bible-believing Christians to violate their faith, and I think it makes no sense.”

Cruz’s comments came a day after Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick asked Attorney General Ken Paxton for an opinion on whether county clerks and justices of the peace can refuse to issue same-sex marriage licenses or perform same-sex weddings. Texas already has a law in effect that protects clergy members who refuse to perform gay weddings due to their religious beliefs.

“There’s no right in society to force a Jewish rabbi to perform a Christian wedding ceremony,” Cruz said Saturday. “There’s no right in society to force a Muslim imam to perform a Jewish wedding ceremony.”

Surely a Harvard-trained constitutional lawyer like Ted Cruz knows the difference between public officials and members of the clergy. Everyone who isn’t an idiot knows this. I know he’s just pandering to the base and all, but geez. It’s just that every time he does something like this, I hear Colonel Flagg from M*A*SH saying “Don’t play dumb with me. I’m better at it than you are.” I guess I don’t really have a point to make, I just wanted to say that for the record. Carry on.

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  1. matx says:

    Not only is he pandering to the base about marriage, but the whole idea that “America” was founded by those trying to escape religious persecution–1) I’m pretty sure the United States was actually founded by a bunch of guys in the late 18th Century – who kept religion and government separate, and 2) just like any colonial endeavor, the main reason for settling these shores by Europeans was money / greed. Sure, some groups of people used the opportunity to work for a corporation also escaped religious persecution on the other side of the pond, but once they got here made sure to control religious dissent within their own midst.

  2. General Grant says:

    It is a completely novel interpretation of the First Amendment to claim that a public official can use his religious beliefs to substitute for the law when acting in a public capacity. A priest, for example, can totally refuse to marry previously divorced people or couples that have engaged in sex before marriage. But if that priest were to be elected County Clerk, he would have no right to deny those same couples civil marriage licenses because the law would give him no grounds to do so. This same concept applies to same sex marriage. Cruz should totally be called on his “constitutional lawyer” credentials. Any law student who espoused this view of the First Amendment would get a B- (that’s the Harvard Law equivalent of a big fat F for everyone else).

  3. [email protected] says:

    Senator Cruz is a licensed attorney. His recent remarks that disparage judges and the judiciary are grounds for disciplinary action by the Texas State Bar.

  4. Steven Houston says:

    Matx, most of the colonies that were first established in the Americas were indeed founded by people trying to escape religious persecution. The problem was that they then became the persecutors for others that worshiped in a different manner; historical texts full of examples to that effect. As strong as some of our founding fathers were on establishing a secular republic, all sorts of trouble arose from such conflicts, JFK even having to state his loyalty to the country over the pope given his catholic beliefs. How much credit you want to lend the late comers in the 18th century or the greedy, those religious types were first and established the profitability of the colonies to build on. At least that’s what I was taught decades ago. 😉