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Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Did Judge Bunning Blink?

by JASmius

Take a gander at that pic, my friends; there's nothing like a little direct anti-Christian persecution to bring people of all "ethnic persuasions" together in peace and brotherhood, is there?

I don't know if this public clamor on the part of Miss Davis's brothers and sisters in Christ moved Judge David Bunning's hand to set her free yesterday.  I'd like to believe it, but given the combination of media hostility and embargo, it is highly unlikely, at least in the short term.  The longer Miss Davis remained in the slammer trying not to drop the proverbial soap, though, the greater public attention it would have cumulatively attracted and the more public anger and outrage would have built.  And it would have built, because it's beyond clear that Miss Davis will never yield in her quiet, Christ-like principled biblical stand.  And the optics of that would have grown ever more awful, even for an oppressed member of the "wrong tribe".

So did Judge Bunning blink first?  Or was it a case of his realizing that if being thrown in jail wasn't enough to coerce Miss Davis into turning against her LORD, he had, as a practical matter, run out of options?  He did retreat, withdrawing from trying to force Miss Davis to issue "marriage" licenses to homosexuals personally to threatening her with reincarceration if she interfered with her staff doing so.

But that's a distinction without a difference, and Miss Davis's attorney yesterday loudly called Judge Bunning's bluff:

Kentucky county clerk Kim Davis "is not going to violate her conscience" and issue marriage licenses to gay couples — even if this means going back to jail, her attorney, Roger Gannam, told Newsmax TV on Tuesday.

"Kim Davis will not violate her conscience, and as long as she's being asked to have marriage licenses issued under her authority and under her name, she simply cannot do that," Gannam told The Hard Line host Ed Berliner. "Whether there's space in this order for Kim Davis to proceed without violating her conscience, that remains to be seen."

When Berliner asked Gannam whether this meant his client going back to jail if he again refused to issue the licenses, he responded: "Kim Davis has shown us that she would rather go to jail than violate her conscience.

"So, the answer there is if Judge Bunning puts it to her in those terms, will you violate your conscience or obey my order, Kim Davis is not going to violate her conscience," he said.

He insisted that Kentucky law provides every person with the right to "a religious accommodation if their religious exercise is substantially burdened and that doesn't exclude elected officials."

Kim Davis is not going to quit, she is not going to issue "marriage" licenses, and she is not going to allow her office to issue them in and under her name.  Period.  Judge Bunning can throw her in jail again, but that won't accomplish anything except to draw more public sympathy to the last kind of person that is supposed to receive it in this "brave, new world" of mandatory universal homosexuality by Justice Kennedy's tie-died order.  I guess it mostly if not all depends upon how stubborn and how much of a hardass Judge Bunning wants to be.  If he were a Democrat appointee I'd have no doubts about Miss Davis being doomed, but I tend to think that Bunning will come to a modus vivendi with Miss Davis on the matter.  Either that or others will escalate the confrontation for him by suing Miss Davis and her family into financial oblivion, or perhaps by just finding her and literally turning her into a martyr.  Otherwise, we have what is generally known as an "impasse".

However much farther this microcosmic "last redoubt" struggle goes, don't count on a whole lot of public support for the side of right.  When Scott Rasmussen polled the question of whether an elected official should be able to a ignore a federal court ruling that he or she disagrees with for religious reasons, the result was 66%-26% "no".  YouGov produced slightly more positive results (54%-32% "no"), with even Republicans barely tilting in her favor (46%-40%).  When the question was extended to whether said "elected official" should be jailed for his/her civil disobedience, the numbers ran even more against Miss Davis.  Finally, Republican respondents said she should quit and run away rather than stand and fight by a 10-1 margin.

I think the question at this point isn't whether this dispute is a hill worth dying on - clearly it is, and there isn't likely to be a better one at the rate that anti-Christian persecution is burgeoning - but for how long Miss Davis can keep dying on it.  She's certainly made her point and raised public consciousness about the outrageous oppression the Obergefell decision has begotten, but the sad reality is, her stand has not turned the tide of accelerating cultural deterioration, and will only have diminishing returns and can only hurt her own cause from this point.

My guess is she'll hang with it for as long as it takes to gain an alternative gig via her newfound notoriety with one of the pro-religious liberty groups that has supported her.  I know I would have a difficult time walking away from an $80,000 annual salary and she does have her family to think about.  Not quite the heroic, "Antipasian" end you're all looking for and we'd all like to see, but, as it is written, "There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven." This one, methinks, has just about run its course.

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