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This Week In Crazy: We’re All Mad Here

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This Week In Crazy: We’re All Mad Here

American Tea Party

I may not agree with your beliefs, but I will defend to the death my right to ridicule them. Welcome to “This Week In Crazy,” The National Memo’s weekly update on the wildest attacks, conspiracy theories, and other loony behavior from the increasingly unhinged right wing. Starting with number five:

5. Judge James DePiazza

Now that marriage equality is the law of the land, there’s been a stampede of magistrates, clerks, and judges seeking ways to avoid fulfilling their sworn duties — whether its by opting out of performing marriages altogether or invoking religious freedom protections.

Judge James DePiazza of Denton County, Texas, found a simpler solution: He asked gay couples to sign an acknowledgement that he doesn’t believe in their right to marriage before he would marry them.

In an interview with The New Civil Rights MovementDePiazza expressed confusion as to why this move was controversial: It appeared to the judge the simplest way to balance his religious beliefs with the new law.

“It’s to let them know where I stand. I would want to know that if I was getting married,” he told the Houston Chronicle. “There are some couples of the same sex who don’t want to be married by someone who doesn’t believe in same-sex marriage.”

The Chronicle reported that the form all gay couples had to sign read as follows:

Judge DePiazza prefers to NOT conduct same-sex ceremonies, but will not decline anyone who chooses to schedule with him. While we may not necessarily agree with, we acknowledge Judge DePiazza’s position that he prefers not to conduct same-sex marriages and agree not to address the topic of same-sex marriages with Judge DePiazza before, during or after the ceremony.

The form on the Denton County Courthouse website, which NCRM and the Chronicle both link to, no longer includes this language. It does seem to state that the judge will require a verbal affirmation of an unspecified declaration: “A civil declaration will be read by Judge DePiazza that both parties respond with affirmation.”

The form further clarifies that the paperwork required and ceremony performed for same-sex couples are exactly the same as for opposite-sex couples.

DePiazza has recorded a new voicemail message for his chambers’ phone line, stating that his “intention is not consistent” with what has been reported in the media. With apparent remorse, he offered his sincere apologies to anyone who was offended, claiming that he had acted in good faith and meant the new policies to be a courtesy, in order to make gay couples aware of his stance and to give them the option to be married by someone else.

Well, now I feel just terrible including him on this page. Because of all the public officials opposed to marriage equality, rattling their religious-liberty sabers and vowing to stand in righteous opposition against Obergefell from this day till Doomsday… it is possible Judge DePiazza may just be the sanest, most conscientious of them all. Which itself is kind of scary.

Via The New Civil Rights Movement

Next: Sean Hannity 

Sam Reisman

Sam Reisman is the former managing editor at The National Memo, where he still writes the weekly "This Week In Crazy" column. His writing has appeared in Flavorpill, The Huffington Post, Columbia Daily Spectator, and Bwog. He was the publisher of the 2010 edition of Inside New York, an annual guidebook to the city for students and young professionals.

Since 2011, he has co-curated and hosted Peculiar Streams, a showcase for NYC-based writers, musicians, comedians, and filmmakers. He is a staff writer at Mediaite, and blogs at SamReisman.com.

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  1. dtgraham July 17, 2015

    Military occupation of Texas by…America, now Scientology replacing psychiatry; not to mention all the other crap. This Abbot is really not feeling well. You can see the signs.

    Top 10 signs that Greg Abbott is losing it:

    10. Is working to close the last abortion clinic because he believes that Spaghetti-O’s can be used as a birth control device.
    9. He’s obsessed with the idea of a Texas Pit BBQ sauce cologne.
    8. At next state-of-the-state address, he plans on stripping off his shirt and yelling, “let’s put the Ab(b)’s back in Abbott.”
    7. Every few minutes, and for no apparent reason, yells “Yee-Haw!” at the top of his lungs.
    6. Believes he is Mrs. Donald Trump.
    5. Shoots out TV every time Barack Obama or Wendy Davis come on.
    4. Wants a new provision in the constitution that says whenever the confederate flag appears, everybody has to open their eyes as wide as they can and say “Gollee!”
    3. Wants it to be a felony in Texas to eat pudding with a straw.
    2. Overheard muttering to himself, “Damn lying squirrels!”
    1. Taken to splashing himself with Texas Pit BBQ sauce cologne and wandering through the legislature chanting “lick me.”

    1. idamag July 17, 2015

      Damn you are good!

      1. dtgraham July 18, 2015

        Thanks for the kind words. The political right any more is enough to inspire anyone.

    2. Carolyn1520 July 17, 2015

      LMAO Thank you!

      1. dtgraham July 18, 2015

        Glad they were decent enough to provide a few chuckles. I later had an idea for #3 and #6 that seemed a lot funnier but it was too late by then. Can’t control when these things come to you.

  2. rednekokie July 17, 2015

    It doesn’t matter one whit if the judge does or does not agree with same-sex marriage.
    If he performs his duty, then that is all that is being asked of him.
    What he personally thinks has nothing to do with the marriage ceremony itself, unless, of course, he just wishes to inject a bit of hatred into what ordinarily is a very loving ceremony. If that is the case, then I wouldn’t want him to perform the ceremony, and would ask another to do so.

    1. jmprint July 17, 2015

      He should resign since he is against the law.

      1. tomtype July 17, 2015

        He doesn’t have to agree with a law to enforce it. Lots of judges do not agree with every law, but they enforce the law.

  3. Wayne Thorson July 17, 2015

    It would be fun to know if he makes people getting married for the 2nd time have to sign the same type of form. The Bible talks against this also. If he doesn’t he is nothing but a big bigot.

    1. jmprint July 17, 2015

      He is a bigot and that is what the note should start out with:
      i am a bigot and I will pick and choose which God’s laws apply to man kind, and to prove I am worthy of heaven I will deny people their rights.

  4. Girl Downunder July 17, 2015

    Sean H = SHILL. I will say ANYTHING to earn a dollar & to promote my owner’s selfish world-view.

    I have no personal ethics or morals beyond what my owners require from me. Thank you, SH

    What a narcissistic, selfish pr*ck.

  5. paulyz July 17, 2015

    Liberals critical of some not wanting to follow our Laws, but completely silent though approving of Obama not following some Immigration enforcement Laws. Laws like either not deporting Illegals, or releasing thousands of criminal Illegals. Ignoring those Laws even Obama himself stating over 29 times he didn’t have the authority to do so, but did anyway.

    1. jmprint July 17, 2015

      Paul you are a wing nut, President Obama has been very strict on immigration, he has deported more then any other president. He does have a heart and morally he is following Jesus Word when he thinks about the students that have gone through 12 years of school and now are in fear of being deported.. You forget he is the President and his job is to use executive orders when congress is lame.

      1. paulyz July 19, 2015

        The word is actual deportation, not claiming “subject to deportation. ” Or releasing criminal Illegals while (even Libs on here admit) using procecutorial discretion, and ordering border agents to NOT arrest Illegals. Start enlightening youself by checking out some facts & opposing views.

        1. jmprint July 20, 2015

          I do check out facts, those are things you need to enlighten yourself with. Negative, negative, negative is all your eyes can see. As Jesus says some people can see, but close their heart, and some people can listen, but cannot understand.

    2. tomtype July 17, 2015

      He admits he does not have the authority to change the law, but he does fully have authority to determine order of enforcement, and priority of enforcement.
      So he cannot change the law, but like the district attorney or the chief of police, he can say we are not worried about this crime, so don’t look for this. It is sometimes called don’t ask, don’t tell. Of course if the illegal immigrant feels it necessary to march into the police station and announce: I’m here illegally and I’ve been here illegally for the past 12 years. So there! I suppose they could arrest him on the grounds of stupidity if nothing else.

      1. idamag July 17, 2015

        Unfortunately, if you notice, there aren’t enough jails to hold all the stupid people.

        1. The lucky one July 17, 2015

          Ain’t that the truth and stupidity doesn’t discriminate, existing equally across all human categories. Einstein said the difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits.

        2. paulyz July 19, 2015

          Oh, I believe we could find room for you.

      2. paulyz July 19, 2015

        How does Obama & the DA determine if an Illegal is dangerous or not, AFTER they commit a crime? Not to mention the crime of entering our Country Illegally, many using our schools, welfare & health care. He also doesn’t have the authority to release tens of thousands of criminal Illegals.

        1. tomtype July 19, 2015

          Under our law, we can’t detain a person before committing a crime in anticipation of him/her doing so. And some crimes are more serious than others. It is hard to even get bail for murder, but some far less serious, one can get ROR. Released on own Recognance. And except for some like you, sneeking across the border meaning no harm, and only wanting to better onself, especially when it is so impossible to do so legally. Make it easier legally, and you will get fewer illegals. But recently a Canadian, with a brother in the US found it would take 10 years for him to legally gain admittance. One does not have that sort of time if the family needs money, if you are facing outrageous crime, often perpetrated by drug gangs or political revolutionaries. Or if you have part of the family already in the US and we have closed off the border for them to return.
          Illegals are actually profitable. they pay sales taxes, SS taxes, and payroll deduction taxes. But the use them far less than native born. They are willing to take the guff and take the dirty jobs we native born don’t want, especially at the price offered.

    3. Independent1 July 17, 2015

      And there you go with more of your lies and fabrications of reality. And I realize your ignorance is just typical of a RWNJ, but for your information, although Congress may right the laws, ITS THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH THAT DETERMINES HOW AND WHEN THOSE LAWS WILL BE IMPLEMENTED!!



      And, Obama is not releasing any criminal illegals!! In fact, his administration has deported more troublesome illegals than the Clinton or Bush 2 put together. And any other combination of 2 presidents. And he IS NOT GIVING ILLEGALS OUTRIGHT AMNESTY LIKE REAGAN AND BUSH 1 DID!! Both of who just looked the other way while millions of illegals were free to do as they pleased about working to get their citizenship with no restrictions!!

      Obama has established not only a cut off date (a date by which they had to be resident in the country), they also have to pay any back taxes they owe; be checked out to ensure they have no criminal backgrounds; and then to get at the back of the line and pay all the costs associated with working toward their citizenship.

      1. paulyz July 19, 2015

        NO, it is the Executive Branch’s duty to execute the LAWS Congress Legislates. He bypasses that by claiming prosecutorial discretion. Even though he admitted he couldn’t do so over 20 times. You will ignore every violation as long as it is from Obama or a Democrat -Socialist.

        1. Independent1 July 19, 2015

          You clearly know diddly squat about the Constitution. The President is not the lackey of the Congress. The President has t he authority to determine that portions of laws written by the Congress are unconstitutional, and therefore refused to enforce them; and to determine how and when a law will be implemented.

          Presidents have done this over the years by using ‘signing statements’. And you may have guessed it already, that past presidents have used signing statements just occasionally, until of course Reagan, and then your buddy George Bush like spending money like water, wrote signing statements like water too like around 1200 of them in his 8 years. MORE SIGNING STATEMENTS THAN ALL PREVIOUS PRESIDENTS COMBINED!! YES GEORGIE BOY THAT IDIOT!!!!!!!!

          And guess what one of the 1st things President Obama did when he took office: he informed the Justice Department that THEY COULD IGNORE ALL THE SIGNING STATEMENTS THAT GEORGIE BOY HAD ADDED TO THOSE 1200 PIECES OF LEGISLATION.


          SEE THIS DUMBCOFF!!!!!!

          From prawnworks.net;

          By Robert Schlesinger, Thomas Jefferson Street blog

          In case you missed it, Barack Obama took a rare presidential step today—rolling back a predecessor’s executive overreach.

          Obama declared that the signing statements George W. Bush employed during his reign to selectively nullify laws he didn’t like—1,200 of them!—could be ignored. Good for him.

          The New York Times’ Charlie Savage (whose Takeover remains the seminal work on the Bush administration’s imperial presidency) reports:

          Calling into question the legitimacy of all the signing statements that former President George W. Bush used to challenge new laws, President Obama on Monday ordered executive officials to consult with Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. before relying on any of them to bypass a statute.

          Mr. Bush frequently used signing statements to declare that provisions in the bills he was signing were unconstitutional constraints on executive power, claiming that the laws did not need to be enforced or obeyed as written. The laws he challenged included a torture ban and requirements that Congress be given detailed reports about how the Justice Department was using the counter-terrorism powers in the USA Patriot Act.

          Dating back to the 19th century, presidents have occasionally signed a bill while declaring that one or more provisions were unconstitutional. Presidents began doing so more frequently starting with the Reagan administration.

          But Mr. Bush broke all records, using signing statements to challenge about 1,200 bill sections over his eight years in office—about twice the number challenged by all previous presidents combined, according to data compiled by Christopher Kelley, a political science professor at Miami University in Ohio.

          Just process that for a second. Over eight years, Bush signed bills into law and then unilaterally proclaimed that some of the laws he had just enacted didn’t count. That’s crazy. And dangerous.

  6. The lucky one July 17, 2015

    Personally while I am 100% in favor of gay marriage I think a private business receiving no tax subsidies and having no government contracts should be able to decide to whom they will sell their products and services. However
    I would appreciate the business posting their policy so that I know not to patronize their establishment. I couldn’t care less what anyone’s religious beliefs or sexual orientation but I choose not to give my money to bigots.

    1. whodatbob July 17, 2015

      You state private business receiving no tax subsidies should be able to sell their products and services to whom they want. This allows them to refuse service to whom ever they wish. Sounds like free enterprise! Big Brother says you can not discriminate. Businesses can only refuse service to non Muslin straight white people.

      You confused me, by inferring businesses exercising their right to refuse service to whom ever are bigots, therefore you would not patronize their business.

      1. tomtype July 17, 2015

        Those straight, non-Muslim white people are also protected, or don’t you understand all. All’s not just a detergent any more.

      2. The lucky one July 17, 2015

        In my opinion someone who discriminates against another human being based on things that are none of their business and that have no negative effects for the discriminator then that person is acting in a bigoted manner. As long as it is just a refusal to do business and that business receives no tax breaks, has no government contracts and requires no government issued licenses then the refusal is within their rights. I choose not to do business with people that narrow minded and that is my right.

        1. whodatbob July 17, 2015

          Missed the point. White guy walks into a white business doesn’t like his looks refuses to service him there is no legal recourse available. Black guy, Muslim guy or gay walks into same business is refused service he has legal recourse.

          You admit that you are willing discriminate against a business because said business post a sign stating the owners religious belies. Is that not religious discrimination? Seems you are a bigot.

          Perhaps, you should rethink your position.

          No I have never been discriminated against.

          1. The lucky one July 18, 2015

            I got your point, my point is that kind discrimination is so rare as to be purely hypothetical. No, not a bigot. I discriminate based on public behavior not personal characteristics such as color, gender, sexual orientation etc. For instance if I ran a restaurant and a gay couple started “making out” at their table I would eject them just as I would a hetero couple. I don’t care what the business owner’s beliefs are as long as he does not try to impose them on others. We discriminate all the time in where we shop, who we socialize with etc. and I discriminate against stupid and hateful people. I don’t try to hurt them I just avoid their presence.

          2. whodatbob July 18, 2015

            Ah, but would discriminate against couples showing affection in a public place. Not saying you are wrong. Maybe, I have been a victim of discrimination. In my youth many times I have been made to move along for displaying affectionate towards the love of my life at the time. You know in that situation Blacks and Gays would cause claim discrimination is they were move along.

            Heck if a baker does not sell me a cake I go down the street to a bakery shop willing to sell me a cake.

          3. The lucky one July 18, 2015

            I didn’t say showing affection, e.g. holding hands, hugging, brief kiss etc. I’m talking about, what done in private would be called foreplay. Without witnessing your display of affection towards the love of your life at the time I can’t say whether you were discriminated against or not. I often was as a young man because of my long hair at the time and what some police construed as a disrespectful facial expression though I never said or did anything disrespectful.
            I kind of agree with your last statement but like you I have not been victimized much so my perspective is limited.

      3. The lucky one July 17, 2015

        I’m curious as to when the last time was that you were discriminated against for being white, straight or non-Muslim.

        1. Sand_Cat July 17, 2015

          I’m sure that -in his imagination, at least – whodatbob is “discriminated against” many times daily. How dare you or anyone else be smarter, more thoughtful, or in any way – unintentionally or not – show by your example what a small-minded person he is.

          1. whodatbob July 17, 2015

            You are a mind reader now. Wow, wish I had that ability.

      4. geraldhoey July 17, 2015

        I’ll ask you the same thing I just asked the previous poster. You would be comfortable with a business posting a “White people only” sign on the front door of their businesses? How would what you propose be any different?

        1. whodatbob July 17, 2015

          You have my post confused with Bigot The lucky one.

      5. Sand_Cat July 17, 2015

        You’ve obviously been confused for a long time, except about one thing: you are a bigot, and will write to defend it.

        1. whodatbob July 17, 2015

          Another mind reading? Or is it Voodoo?

    2. geraldhoey July 17, 2015

      So you would be comfortable with such businesses posting “White people only” on their door? Perhaps you could explain how that would be any different from what you propose.

      1. The lucky one July 17, 2015

        Yes, obviously such bigotry is ugly but I prefer overt rather than covert. I am white, as far as I know, and not gay but I wouldn’t patronize a business that excluded any group based on ethnicity, skin color, sexual preference, religion etc. If someone hates me I don’t want them serving me food, fixing my brakes and any number of other things so yes I would like to know a potential provider’s animosity so as to better avoid them. To mandate that someone provide the service/product is to legislate morality. It’s been tried with other “sinful” practices, in my mind bigotry is a sin if the word sin has any meaning, and has never been effective. The sinners are punished but the behaviors don’t change.

        1. geraldhoey July 17, 2015

          My point is that what you propose is patently illegal just as racial discrimination would be. It doesn’t really matter what you or I think about it, such conduct is discrimination and therefore illegal.

          1. The lucky one July 17, 2015

            So you are saying that since it has been made illegal by some “enlightened” legislature it is beyond criticism? It does matter what you and I think about it because laws can be changed. I don’t have any sympathy for the bigots that get punished but I also don’t think there is any positive here. This is just one more example of big brother dictating our behavior. As I said above Morality cannot be legislated and when it is tried it often creates more problems.

          2. dtgraham July 18, 2015

            Wrong. Morality can be legislated and when it was applied to the instance of business discrimination, it solved the problem. The problem being that businesses cannot simply deny services to African-Americans due solely to race. What were the “more” problems that it created? None that I can see. The same principle applies to gay Americans.

            You cannot have a fair and just society where all people are supposedly created and treated equally, and yet still allow businesses to discriminate against anyone that they want to for any reason.

          3. The lucky one July 18, 2015

            No, not wrong, we just disagree. You say “it”
            solved the problem but that is your opinion, not a statement of fact. Ask your black or gay friends if they still experience negative discrimination. What stops a bigoted business owner from giving an excuse, other than a bigoted one, why they can’t serve someone? Again I prefer honesty. If a business owner wants to discriminate who they serve, fine state it up front so that I know to take my business elsewhere. We don’t have “a fair and just society”, never have and never will while 1% of the population controls such a disproportionate
            amount of the wealth.

            How does a $135,000 windfall for the gay couple denied a cake (we’re not talking healthcare or other essential service here) contribute towards a fair/just society? Even if we accept the need for the law in question why would the large fine go to the couple? Shouldn’t it go to the municipality? The couple can pursue civil damages if warranted.

          4. dtgraham July 18, 2015

            It did solve the problem of various public establishments denying service to people just because of their race, religion or sexual orientation. That’s not an opinion. Discrimination will always be with us but that kind of in-your-face overtness can’t be tolerated. You’d have a nation at sectarian war with itself, and there’s a certain level of social cohesion that most societies strive for.

            Who’s against religious freedom generally speaking? Where it becomes a problem is when it starts defining freedom as the ability to single out and victimize this group or that group in the wider public sphere. That’s not acceptable.

          5. The lucky one July 19, 2015

            I’ll stand by my previous post. The law MAY have reduced the incidence of overt discrimination but has certainly not solved the problem. If you have some solid research to back your opinion please share.
            The religious fanatics are not going to change. Most have not had an original thought since they were children. When enough people speak out in the presence of bigotry and express their disapproval of hateful speech and behavior then we will see the “problem being solved”.

          6. dtgraham July 21, 2015

            It would have eliminated overt discrimination. A few may find other ways to not serve a certain race, colour, and so on (if they’re able to and still get away with it) but they’re not going to just come out and tell you that. Not now. That’s what I was getting at.

            Human rights can never be dictated by religious whims because too much appears in religious texts that is antithetical to the modern world, and that’s a credit to the modern world, not the religious texts.

          7. whodatbob July 18, 2015

            A fair and just society where all people are supposedly created and treated equally is a beautiful theory. You left out an important part, under the law. The law can not discriminate against any one. All must be treated equally.

            The government does not have the right nor the power to prevent any from holding any predejust

          8. dtgraham July 18, 2015

            That’s what I meant. Under the law. It seems to work in free societies. The government establishes laws that prevent certain groups from being singled out for inferior treatment in the marketplace. The United States is a free society the last time I checked. Many countries in the free world even have hate speech laws outside of the marketplace.

          9. whodatbob July 18, 2015

            Freedom of Religion is there to prevent our government from forcing one set of moral values on those who believe in another set of moral values.

            This is a clash of moral values. One believes same sex marriage is morally acceptable, the other believes same sex marriage is not.

            The court should not have chosen one over the other.

          10. dtgraham July 18, 2015

            I suppose it is but I guess it just depends on how far you want to go in forcing your moral values onto others.

            Gay Americans just want to marry the one they love and live their lives the same as anyone else. Their opponents often don’t just want to stop that; they also want to limit their vocations (teacher, scout leader, etc..) and advocate for businesses to be able to deny them service. That’s a different proposition.

            I see it much more as a case for human rights than a clash of moral values. Take a look at the number of countries and jurisdictions around the world that have legalized gay marriage and enshrined human rights for their gay citizens. The U.S. was finding itself increasingly alone on that front until that SCOTUS decision on gay marriage.

          11. whodatbob July 20, 2015

            By forcing a person to do business is in that is in opposition to his moral values, must sell wedding cake to gay couple, prevents baker from living his religious beliefs. Bad business practice, not serving all customers,

          12. tomtype July 19, 2015

            The court did not choose one over the other. It said both must co-exist, while the previous situation was choosing one version over the other by not allowing the other. If we say you can be any religion you want, but that does not include Muslim, we do not really have a free choice as to religion. If we say you can have any kind of marriage you want, but that does not gay marriage, they you do not have freedom to marry whom you want. But if you say you can marry who you want and it is legal. You can still believe it is not right, but you cannot prevent it. Just as you can still believe a Muslim or Hindu, or Buddhist wedding is not the same in God’s sight, and not a real wedding like your wedding, but they are legal, and can and do get performed. Because, wisely we know government can’t really make those kinds of decisions. So, your church doesn’t allow gay marriages, and the next one does? They each present their reasons, but which one is right and how is the government able to make that choice when even good Christians can’t?

        2. charleo1 July 17, 2015

          Well, here’s the deal for me. You’re a smart thoughtful guy, so I wouldn’t pretend to lecture you. But it all really comes down to the type of society we choose to create. Can you imagine being on a road trip with your family, and stop for a gas, and restroom break. Only to have the proprietors refuse you service because you don’t seem to be Hindus, but White Christians. They explain, the White Christians up the road refuse to serve Hindus because they hate Muslims, and can’t tell the difference. So you’ll have to go up the road and deal with the religious bigots for your gas. It’s about 10 miles. P.S. A little advise. Say something about Jesus, for faster service! Well, what about an oil change? They don’t do it there. You’ll need to drive clear into Peoria, and look for the giant, “we do interdenominational,” sign. They’ll fix you right up!

          1. The lucky one July 17, 2015

            I hear you. Bigotry is ugly and disruptive with no easy solutions. I just feel that having things in the open is better. Would you want someone professing hatred for you to be making a cake you were going to eat and serve to friends? Who knows what they might put in it out of spite. I sure don’t have the answers but I think most businesses would suffer if their bigotry was visible to all.

          2. tomtype July 17, 2015

            Actually when questioned, most businessmen say of course we wouldn’t discriminate. It is bad business. So, we just adopt that as the businessman’s religious view. Making money is a virtue, and losing money is bad.
            A Black friend, who lived in many cities, explained it thus: Especially in Detroit, you came to make money. But you bring along your old prejudices. But then you face that ultimate business question. Do you serve everyone and make money or do you exercise your old views and not make money, which has become your new reason for living, for moving away from family and birthplace. It actually becomes an easy choice. Remember in Capitalism, greed is a virtue, and businessmen want to be virtuous.

          3. Allan Richardson July 17, 2015

            And, as I mentioned in another post, in the Jim Crow South before the Civil Rights Act, serving everyone would bring you more TROUBLE than money. The extra money would not be worth it, even though you want to do both what is right and what OUGHT to be more profitable. But a Molotov cocktail through your window, or a Klan rally and cross burning on your street, turn the scales the other way.

          4. tomtype July 17, 2015

            And part of the cure for that is to make it the law, and not make exceptions. Probably it was more Northern businessmen who were consulted. But it also fits nicely into capitalist and democratic (note small D) theory. And the businessman who wants that extra profit, just says, “It’s the law!” And we have a tradition where the law and justice and social policy are all on the same side. It is one of my great concerns that we may lose that respect for law. It has served us well, and it was an important struggle to achieve it. Even civil disobedience, showed that respect. It carefully only broke one law, the offending law, and accepted the punishment to that, to show the injustice, and thus how that one law and only that one should be broken.

          5. charleo1 July 17, 2015

            You’re absolutely right about the vast majority of businesses not wanting to provide even the slightest hint of bigotry. It’s just dumb business, and that’s all there is to it. So what to make of the odd baker, or florists very publicly refusing to serve that token Gay couple? Who, in the real World, would immediately take their business elsewhere. I think we must see high unordinary instances as test cases being carried out on both sides of the issue. Put out there to make a broader challenge to the idea of the sovereignty of the business owner, versus a government requirement, or ‘regulation,’ made not in the interests of public safety, but as a mechanism to improve civil life. Which is often disparaged on the Right, and in Libertarian circles, as government overreach, or abridging individual Rights in order to socially engineer society. Which in their opinion is to increase the power of government over our personal lives. It’s mostly crap. But it is what some think. In fact, it’s how they look at almost all gov. initiatives. However the Supreme Court is looking at this from an entirely different viewpoint. And use an entirely different criteria. Show harm. Show the Court how are you harmed, if you are required to serve Gays. They cannot do so. So they’ve got to find a loophole in the law. Get a variance. So in order to prevail, they are pitting the Constitutional Right of Religion, against the other Right of equal protection. But here again, they fail. Because they also want to be selective in their service refusals. Thereby, not only weakening the 14th Amend. But threatening everyone’s Rights to equal protection by dispensing with the requirement for equal treatment for any reason, without explanation. And that the Court may not do, and follow the Constitution.

          6. Allan Richardson July 17, 2015

            Not only is bigotry ugly, but as in the example Charleo1 cited, it can be a substantial hardship, even sometimes a life threatening one, for a would-be customer if competing choices are not readily available. Example: a woman is prescribed birth control pills and the doctor specifies that she could, because of her medical condition, experience possibly dangerous bleeding if she does not start taking them in 24 hours. She lives within reasonable travel time of two drugstores; one of them has a store policy that they consider birth control sinful and will not fill prescriptions for the pill. The other one, the second one she visits, has no company policy, but the pharmacist on duty at that time not only refuses to FILL the prescription, but will not RETURN it to her, DESTROYING it instead. It is too late to call the doctor on a Friday night, and the only emergency room is in a Catholic hospital, which may be willing to take non-objectionable measures to save her if the bleeding does stop, but will not supply the pills (even after a phone call from her doctor) because of their religious objection.

            So you see, when a person or organization enters the commercial marketplace, they must serve EVERYONE who is willing to pay and is not disturbing the peace. Conservatives in the 1960s said that serving black people, for example, should be a personal decision, and that leaving it up to the individual business would eventually convert everyone’s mind. The problem was that businesses like lunch counters in the South did business in an environment in which EVERYONE was expected to refuse to serve black people, or only serve them at the “back door, take out.” A white business owner whose sign said “we serve everyone regardless of race” had a legal right to do so, even under some Jim Crow laws. But he risked being boycotted by white customers and going out of business before the black customers could come and pick up the slack — or even getting a “friendly” visit from the Ku Klux Klan. The only way to start the process was to make a federal law, the public accommodations law, saying that it was a crime to refuse to serve customers because of their race. That way, the bigot and the progressive operated under the same rules, so customers got used to seeing a mix of people in public business places. Now we see the introduction of religious “freedom” to return back to the days when businesses could choose to discriminate on ANY basis.

          7. The lucky one July 18, 2015

            I appreciate the reasoning in your 2nd paragraph
            but the 1st is too farfetched. If we use our imagination we can
            always think of a highly specific case wherein a given law would serve a useful purpose. That’s what the government does with “threats to our security” as a justification for taking away civil rights.

            I guess what irritates me the most about the case with the
            wedding cake is the absurdity of awarding the couple $135,000 in damages. All that does is draw sympathy for the business owners despite the ugliness of their behavior. Close them down for a day to a week, post a large sign in the window explaining the closure and give them a reasonable fine to cover government costs. That won’t solve the problem of bigotry, neither will a large fine, but at least it fits the “crime”.

          8. Allan Richardson July 18, 2015

            Since you are willing to discuss nuances and degrees of intensity and action, I have more respect for you than for some of the trolls who tend to inhabit discussion sites (and cannot seem to control their hate and refrain from nasty, sometimes X-rated, names and comments).

            It is difficult to decide where to draw the line, and in most cases the bakery case would be trivial (although one aspect of it which has not been widely reported is that the baker had been planning the wedding with the couple for weeks, and at the last minute, THEN realized they were a gay couple and refused to bake the cake, OR to return their deposit, almost as if the baker WANTED to ruin their big day). The contraceptive case, I believe, would not be trivial where there were few, or no, alternatives for the patient.after being refused. And the medical treatment case, even less trivial.

            Part of the variable situation is the prevalence of the discrimination. In Jim Crow days, for example, black people wanting to eat lunch when shopping downtown had few options, since the majority of white owned dining places would not serve them, and discrimination was SUPPORTED by white public opinion. Black people making long bus trips knew they could not get meals at the bus stations along the way, so they (or their parents) made lunch boxes with a piece of fried chicken, an apple or orange, and some paper napkins (Colonel Sanders, you’re welcome for the idea). So the refused customers did suffer some degree of hardship.

            The philosophy behind the Public Accommodations part of the Civil Rights Act is that, by opening a business to the general public, rather than, say, operating on word of mouth referrals out of your home, you are in effect advertising your availability to anyone interested in your products who is not behaving in a criminal or destructive way. You do have the right to call police if necessary to expel customers who are disturbing the others or threatening, but not to “pre-screen” by race, religions, or any category other than public behavior. If this is to be the norm for our society, we cannot afford to make too many exceptions for last minute refusals, or else no one seeking to buy products or services can count on being able to shop anywhere. What most of us consider “religious” teachings specify inclusion rather than hate, the First Amendment implies that the strangest ideas imaginable could be claimed as “religious” and no law can deny that they are based on a personal religious view.

            So where do we draw the line?

          9. The lucky one July 19, 2015

            I try not to get involved with the childish name calling though I’ll admit I do sometimes respond in kind when it happens to me. (BTW I find those on the left are often just as intolerant of disagreement as those on the right) If what you’ve shared about the bakery case is true then no doubt the owners deserve both criminal and civil penalties. Refusal to return the deposit is just outright theft. I wonder how they reconcile that with their bible.

            I agree the hypothetical cases you cite are not trivial and
            as I stated in a previous post anywhere that tax subsidy, government contracts or government issued licenses and permits are involved discrimination cannot be allowed. That would apply in the cases you mention.

            I think your reasoning is sound. The problems I have with
            this are basically two. First in principle I think that people need to speak out when they encounter injustice and maybe even more importantly when they observe others being treated unfairly. I think many will shirk that responsibility because they believe the law will solve the problem. Peer
            pressure and public opinion is more powerful than big brother in changing behaviors. I realize that others may be more likely to speak out with the force of law behind them.

            Secondly I believe that it is absolutely absurd that the couple
            receives $135000 for their “pain and suffering”. If a fine like that is justified a reasonable portion can be allocated to the wronged parties but the bulk of it should go to the entity, city, state, federal that enforces the statute. I have no sympathy for the bakers or any other bigots called to account for their ugly behavior but when the punishment is not in proportion to
            the transgression it interferes more than it helps the process of social cohesion.

          10. tomtype July 19, 2015

            Don’t forget that there are also business ethics. And they say you serve all comers, because when you start excluding people, you lose money, which can lead to business failure. And the laws were written with this in mind. The business has no religion except profits, and not other real reason for existence. And this was all thought up by good Christians long before the current issues or even the older issues. And back then, they were really solid Christians, with none of the current fashionable fad of the week, like we don’t serve gays.

        3. Sand_Cat July 19, 2015

          Discomfort with forcing businesses to serve those they’d rather not is understandable if the business is not a critical one, though I personally believe such compromises must be made. But let’s try this: it’s a simple “truth in advertising” law. All businesses not controlling life-critical functions (e.g., pharmacies, hospitals, etc.) are required to post in their windows lists of those they will not serve: no list, or plaintiff not on the list, sue away.

          1. tomtype July 19, 2015

            So, how in a small town is one to get equal treatment if there is only one provider? And remember it still is against business ethics. Business ethics say you serve all customers to maximize your profits. It is only the employees who can hold a religious opinion, for the business exists to make a profit and to pass on a potential profit that is on something legal is definitely improper. So keep your church membership and loose your C of C life. Most churches understand that if the boss orders you to do something legal, it is your religious duty to comply. You may choose to lose your job, but it is not expected. Well the business’s boss is profit, based upon good customer service.
            Like the judge, you may not agree, but you just do your job.

          2. Sand_Cat July 20, 2015

            I think I must not have been clear: when I said “compromises,” I was saying (or meant to say) that I believe business owners should be required by law to serve all except the dangerous (physically) and other exceptions generally recognized. i do not believe businesses have religious convictions, and I frankly despise the holy hypocrites who are super-selective with their moral outrage, e.g., refusing to make wedding cake for gays, but not for serial adulterers like Newt Gingrich (not to mention the church which accepted him, who I believe should be able to make their own decisions, however hypocritical) and “defense of marriage” hypocrites like four (at least)-time bridegroom Bob Barr. I see “TheLuckyOne”‘s point, but do not really agree, though I think my solution would work very well except in the kind of case you cite.

      2. paulyz July 19, 2015

        Here we go. The difference is race based, not behavior based. I suppose you would complain when a business says, “No shirt/shoes, No service.”

        1. tomtype July 19, 2015

          But surely one could find race based behaviors upon. Back in the 60’s some “good Christians” didn’t think they could serve any customers sporting black skin. So exactly what gay behaviors should they choose? Being macho, or effeminate, or in between? Maybe having high voices, or deep voices or in between. It turns out there are no identifiable “gay behavior” short of having sex on the store counter, but then even that is illegal or heterosexuals too. So, so long as they just say they want to get a wedding cake, what gay behaviors could you possible perceive?

    3. Independent1 July 17, 2015

      Ideally, I think society has reached the point where people who have religious beliefs, or personal prejudices that may cause them to desire not to serve some segment of the population because of a customers’, religion, sexual preference, race or whatever, should not be granted a license to run such a business (e.g., bakeries, restaurants, doctors, pharmacists, professions related to conducting or giving counsel on marriages,etc.,etc.). Governments should be updating their applications for business licenses (or professional licenses) asking such a question, and if the applicant indicates that they have a religious belief or personal (racial) prejudice that may result in them refusing to serve any customer (or even to refuse to grant their employees benefits because of some misguided religious belief); should not receive the business or professional license they are applying for. The last thing society needs today are bigoted, hypocritical people operating companies people depend on serving them.

      1. paulyz July 19, 2015

        The more we define Americans by categories the more division we have. We are no longer a melting pot, but an unassimilated assortment of cultures, which leads to the breakup of a nation’s cohesiveness.

  7. plc97477 July 17, 2015

    depiazza, you could show them all just by quitting your job and not be seen as a bigot. I suggest you look into it.
    sean insanity, I thought it was great that they had the news that holms was not insane running under the picture of a guy who obviously is.
    buchanan, the difference between you and your heros is that they were fighting discrimination.
    abbott, I think you are using the 5th amendment of no self incrimination in your vetoing.
    avi, you and your kind have sent more recruits to allah than any left leaning person has ever done.

  8. exdemo55 July 17, 2015

    This week in the crazy left:

    When is traveling on a Lear jet an indignity? When there’s a Gulfstream available and your last name is Clinton. One of the more revealing emails involving then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton recently released by the State Department came from top aide Huma Abedin on July 2, 2009. “The g3 is delayed till 5pm wheels up,” reported Ms. Abedin. “There is a lear available at 2pm with 6 seats. Do u want to just leave at 5?”

    For ordinary folks: A “g3” is a Gulfstream III private jet that costs $40 million new and is roomier and fancier than a Lear jet, which probably sold for only $10 million.

    It says something about Mrs. Clinton’s sense of entitlement that aides would assume a jet’s size and furnishings warrant a three-hour delay. This is part of the reason she is increasingly viewed as out-of-touch. A May 31 CNN/ORC poll found that more than half those contacted (52%) believe that the phrase “cares about people like you” doesn’t apply to Mrs. Clinton, up from 43% in March 2014.

    To better understand what people think about Mrs. Clinton, staff from American Crossroads participated in focus groups in April and June with independent and undecided voters in six cities in battleground states.

    The information about Mrs. Clinton that participants were shown didn’t come from a secret research file; it is widely available on video and in print. For instance, groups were presented ads that were straightforward narratives of her statements, views and controversies.

    It was striking how much damage Mrs. Clinton’s own statements and actions did. “She’s not dead broke,” said a woman in one focus group, responding to the interview Mrs. Clinton gave about her and her husband’s financial condition upon leaving the White House. “And to see it coming from her own lips, you know,” responded another. “Right, when you know it’s a lie,” chimed in a third.

    Such responses suggest that the Democratic presidential candidate’s difficulty in communicating that she cares about ordinary people is linked in many people’s minds to their concerns that she is not honest and trustworthy. She’s sinking there, too. The May 31 CNN/ORC poll found that 57% of respondents say the words “honest and trustworthy” don’t apply to Mrs. Clinton, up from 43% in March 2014.

    This problem is more pronounced in next year’s swing states. A July 8 Vox Populi poll commissioned by Crossroads found that 42% those polled in Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, Ohio and Virginia say they “completely distrust” her while 14% “somewhat distrust” her.

    So not only is Mrs. Clinton already well known, but attitudes toward her—mostly negative—have already formed. This will make it difficult for the candidate’s handlers to change how voters perceive her.

    Mrs. Clinton has herself added to these negative views. In a July 7 interview with CNN’s Brianna Kellar, she dismissed questions about her private email server by saying: “Everything I did was permitted. There was no law. There was no regulation.” She appeared evasive, which only harms her credibility.

    And she further damaged her sense of trustworthiness when she claimed in the same interview that she had never been served with a subpoena over her private emails—a claim immediately disproved by Rep. Trey Gowdy, chairman of the House Select on Benghazi.

    Research by Crossroads also suggests that Mrs. Clinton is unlikely to benefit from the identity politics that helped President Obama in 2008. She is nowhere as deft as Mr. Obama, who understood that the less he emphasized that he would be the first African-American president, the more he benefited.

    The Vox Populi battleground state poll found that 12% said it made them “much more likely” to support Mrs. Clinton because she “would make history by being the first female president,” and 19% said it would make them “somewhat more likely.” Yet 48% said it made no difference and 19% were “somewhat” or “much less likely.”

    In next year’s election, it will be relatively easy to reinforce doubts about Mrs. Clinton—because she has created so many herself. The harder task for Republican hopefuls will be to show themselves in ways that capture the imagination and persuade voters, steadily and over time, that they as candidates have the qualities Americans want in their next president. These candidates should spend far more time building a compelling case for who they are and what they’ll do, since the public already knows Hillary all too well.

    1. The lucky one July 17, 2015

      I pretty much agree with you on Hilary but find it extremely laughable that you think any of the GOP candidates merit trust or that the phrase “cares about people like you” would apply to them anymore than to Mrs. Clinton. So Hilary lies about having less money than she does and Trump lies about having more money than he does, what’s the difference, a lie is a lie.

      1. paulyz July 19, 2015

        The difference is: Hillary is “acting” like she is just like one of the common people to get their vote. She has nothing in common with average Americans. Trump isn’t ashamed about his wealth, he’s even using Millions of his own money to stop the Big Federal Government Socialist direction that Obama & the Democrats have taken us.

        1. The lucky one July 19, 2015

          I see, you mean like Dubya did with his staged brush cutting photo ops on his ranch in Texas. Your statement about Trump is funny. If the USA was a scripted “reality” show like the one he acted in then it might make sense. Anyone who sees Obama as a socialist is clearly not paying attention to his actions on behalf of corporate America.
          If Trump is investing millions it’s because he expects to make much more than that from his investment. Note that his history is full of cases where he milked a company and got his profit then declared bankruptcy. In fact he could write the book on using bankruptcy as a path to fame and fortune.

        2. jmprint July 20, 2015

          Stop and think about your silly comment for a second. You do not like that the Democrats are taking us into a socialist direction, but you are very much in love with the spiral dive that Cheney and Bushy were spear heading. Where the middle class and poor have to bail out the rich, then they step on us and get richer. No I don’t think I like that, you can stick trump up your anal remarks.

    2. charleo1 July 17, 2015

      I’m afraid most of the Country already knows what these GOP’ers will do. And since there’s not a dime’s worth of difference in any of the more than 40 that will be running by election time. They really won’t remember who they are, because as I said, as a matter of policy, what does it matter? Perhaps they, over at American Crossroads should pay for a study that finds that not only is global warming a hoax, but cutting corporate taxes to zero eliminates cancer, unwanted pregnancies, and the need for higher education. Poll after poll proves, that 33% of Americans would buy it, hook, line, and sinker.

    3. Sand_Cat July 17, 2015

      Your first point about the “crazy left” shows -surprise, surprise – that you have zero substance to your claims. As I suggested before, this particular feature should have another section for the crazy right-wing posters.

    4. Independent1 July 17, 2015

      Who opened your casket anyway?? Did anyone on the NM say they wanted to start hearing your lies and fabrications of the truth again?? Go back to sleep will you!!

      But before you go. Let’s see you identify even one of those 15 Plus GOP clowns that are vying for president, that could even remotely have people, especially foreigners, say things even close to what tens maybe hundreds of women around the world can say about Hillary.

      See these excerpt lowlife (and them please, close that casket cover again will you – we don’t need to be subjected to your diatribes of Fabrications of reality anymore).

      You won’t see Hillary in the same light ever again (from the Daily Kos recaping an event):

      That night in the theater two years ago, the other six brave women came up on the stage. Anabella De Leon of Guatemala pointed to Hillary Clinton, who was sitting right in the front row, and said, “I met her and my life changed.” And all weekend long, women from all over the world said the same thing:

      “I’m alive because she came to my village, put her arm around me, and had a photograph taken together.”

      “I’m alive because she went on our local TV and talked about my work, and now they’re afraid to kill me.”

      “I’m alive because she came to my country and she talked to our leaders, because I heard her speak, because I read about her.”

      When Hillary Clinton stood up in Beijing to speak that truth, her hosts were not the only ones who didn’t necessarily want to hear it. Some of her husband’s advisors also were nervous about the speech, fearful of upsetting relations with China. But she faced down the opposition at home and abroad, and her words continue to hearten women around the world and have reverberated down the decades.

      When Vera Stremkovskaya, a lawyer and human rights activist from Belarus met Hillary Clinton a few years ago, they took a photograph together. And she said to one of the Secretary’s colleagues, “I want that picture.” And the colleague said, “I will get you that picture as soon as possible.” And Stremkovskaya said, “I need that picture.” And the colleague said, “I promise you.” And Stremkovskaya said, “You don’t understand. That picture will be my bullet-proof vest.”


    5. dtgraham July 18, 2015

      None of that is crazy. It’s just politics.

  9. idamag July 17, 2015

    Judge James De Piazza, at least you are honest enough to fulfill your judicial duties, even if you don’t believe in homosexuality. Sean Hannity you are a fruitcake who doesn’t even have n education in journalism. Wait, faux news is as far away from journalism as you can get. Pat Buchanan, you doddering old religious fanatic, Religion is a personal thing and should not be forced on others. Especially, when we can see by example. Greg Abbot, You might fear that they are going to hold you for four days. Avi Lipkin, I am warning posters on these boards not to laugh at you as it might set you off. (Twirling my finger at my temple.)

    1. Allan Richardson July 17, 2015

      Four HOURS, actually. Florida has had a Baker Act for many, many years which allows a combination of medical and family/friend testimony, presented to a judge like a search warrant request, to get anyone deemed a “danger to him/herself or others” involuntarily committed for THREE DAYS for observation only. The medical staff then decide whether it is all a mistake and let the patient go, only a temporary condition and let the patient go, or requires extended inpatient care.

      It hasn’t impeded anyone’s civil rights, apparently. Alan West and Rich Scott are still at large.

      Scientologists have been known to imprison church members for months at a time with NO legal process.

  10. bhndr July 18, 2015

    There is nothing offensive in this person’s actions. I could wish that more Judges acted as dignified about this issue.

  11. Elliot J. Stamler July 19, 2015

    A reasonable compromise on the matter of business non-cooperation with gay weddings would be to provide a statutory, carefully-drawn exemption to the usual binding requirement on businesses to not discriminate, applicable to gay weddings wherein the service/product being supplied would require the PERSONAL PARTICIPATION/APPEARANCE of the business owner/employee at the wedding itself. There is a difference between catering a wedding by providing the food and actually being at the wedding for its serving and related dispensation. Personally I do not know why in the world gay people would want to spend their money on purchasing goods and services for anything from people who had objections to their existence, etc. As a general proposition it is highly problematic for all businesses to be given an exemption with respect to all dealings with gay customers but a narrowly-tailored exception dealing with the type of personal participation I have outlined above, strikes me as quite sensible . P.S. – I guess I truly am an old fogey but do people now cater weddings with PIZZA??????

  12. dpaano October 21, 2015

    Seriously, what are these guys smoking!! It must be good, that’s all I have to say! But, unfortunately, it’s killing their little brain cells, whatever is even left of them!


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