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Dave Ross

How do you define a ‘believer?’

Religious groups are worried because last week, the President warned he'd be issuing an executive order that organizations doing business with the government may not discriminate against gay people. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

Religious groups which contract with the federal government are asking the Obama administration to cut them some slack.

They’re worried because last week, the President warned he’d be issuing an executive order that organizations doing business with the government may not discriminate against gay people.

Gay rights groups have argued for years that since they pay taxes like everyone else, they should be eligible for taxpayer-funded jobs like everyone else.

But religious groups that get federal grants to provide social services don’t want to be forced to hire non-believers. So a group representing Catholics, Jews, Muslims and others sent the White House a letter saying that while they absolutely believe that all persons are created in God’s image – they cannot be forced to employ gay people who don’t share their beliefs.

And they point to the Hobby Lobby case as a precedent.

But a funny thing about that case …

The majority opinion stated that the court would not challenge a corporation’s sincerely-held religious beliefs because a corporation is a person.

Well if it’s not going to challenge a corporate person’s sincerely-held religious belief, how could it possibly challenge a gay person’s sincerely-held religious belief?

If a gay person claims, as many do, to be a devout Catholic and wants to exercise that faith working for a federally-funded Catholic organization and the issue went to the Supreme Court?

Well, I can’t predict what the court would do.

But I know what it would have to do if it wanted to be consistent.

Dave Ross on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM

  • Tune in to KIRO Radio weekdays at 5am for Dave Ross on Seattle's Morning News.

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