Image courtesy of Steve Sack, StarTribune.com
September 16, 2015
You know, one of the downsides to having been offline for two weeks was the fact that I missed out on commenting on current events that were taking place while I was on hiatus.
That said, I'm going to be talking about something that is considered to be old news. And the reason why I want to do this is because I have strong opinions about the subject matter that I want heard. After all, everybody has a voice in this world, and everyone has the right to use it.
But when someone uses that voice to take rights away from other people, I don't agree with that at all.
By now, I'm sure that most of you have heard of the Kim Davis story, but to refresh the memories of those who don't know, I'll give a recap. Kim Davis is the county clerk of Rowan County in the state of Kentucky. The responsibilities of the county clerk include locating documents for court cases, overseeing local elections, and granting marriage licenses for couple who wish to get married.
But what happens when a clerk refuses to do the job that they are expected to do?
Well, such is the case with Kim Davis.
Remember back in June, when the United States of America granted same-sex couples in all fifty states the right to marry? Well, despite that ruling, Kim Davis basically took it upon herself to deny any same-sex couple the marriage license that they needed to get married.
The reason Davis gave for not issuing the licenses was because it went against her beliefs. She feels that marriage should just be between one man and one woman, and therefore does not believe in gay marriage. So she took it upon herself to basically not do the job that she was hired to do.
In fact, she went one step further. She refused to issue any licenses to ANY couple, gay or straight in her county whatsoever. Lawsuits were filed, and because of her stance, she even spent five days in jail. But despite this, she remains firm on her stance.
So, I guess the main question I have is...why in the world does she still even have a job in the first place?
Look, I get that Kim Davis is a bigot. And unfortunately, free speech gives her the right to be a bigot (just as free speech gives me the right to call her one). At the same time, if you're not doing your job - like issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples because it is the law to do so - then that person should not have that job any longer.
I mean, think about it. I hate the colour pink. Does that mean that at my job, I have the right to refuse service to anybody who happens to be wearing pink? Absolutely not. But of course, that's a really lame example to compare what Kim Davis did, so let's one-up my scenario, shall we?
I work in the hardware and sporting goods department in my day job. And one of my duties that I have to perform at my job is to sell ammunition and pellet guns to customers, which I have to admit is not the most fun task in the world.
You see...I'm not a huge fan of hunting. I especially don't like the idea of sport hunting. Nothing disgusts me more than knowing that people would shoot beautiful animals for show. My feelings are that unless you are hunting to provide food for your family, I don't think we should be doing it at all. I'm definitely not saying that everyone that I have sold ammo to is like this, but part of me wonders if there were any that are.
That said, do my beliefs about hunting give me the right to not sell ammunition to sport hunters because I don't agree with their recreational activities? Obviously not. I'd find myself at the end of an unemployment line pretty quick if I ever did that!
Look, I may not agree with hunting or selling ammo, but it is in my job description to do so. I even signed a document saying that I would sell ammo and that I was old enough to sell ammo. That's part of the job. I may not like some duties of the job, but if I want to stay employed, I have to (pardon the pun) bite the bullet.
Kim Davis took a similar oath when she took on her job title. She knows what her duties are, and is getting paid to do the job others expect her to do. If she's not going to perform those duties, either demote her to another position or get rid of her entirely. It's just that simple.
And please don't give me any song and dance number about how she is only standing up for what she believes in. I've seen the meme that compares Davis to civil rights activist Rosa Parks, who refused to give up her seat on a bus to a white person. There is absolutely no comparison between the two!
Rosa Parks took a stand to give people more rights. Kim Davis took a stand to take rights away.