Constantly jockeying for position and prominence with the similarly missioned Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), Liberty Counsel is technically a non-profit organization providing pro bono legal representation for “religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family.” Liberty and ADF seek out opportunities to represent conservative Christians in potentially high-profile religious liberties cases. This accomplishes two necessary tasks: keeping their organizations in the news, and for Liberty Counsel, it ensures yearly donations and grants exceeding $4 million will continue to flow in.It is something I have been saying for months in regards to, not just Liberty Counsel, but Alliance Defending Freedom and Pacific Justice Institute. All these "religious liberty" cases are cash cows, but they hiding a very dangerous agenda, "While participants hail from various denominations, they all commit to using their legal careers to 'reorder society' according to a 'christendomic' worldview, in which there is no separation between church and state." It became blatantly obvious with the formation of the Blackstone Legal Fellowship, as well as the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty
Both organizations are guilty of promoting markedly flawed accounts of "persecuted" Christians who are most often simply people who discriminate and break the law using their beliefs to validate the wrongdoing. The entire charade garners the attention, sympathy, and financial support of conservative segments of the population who rarely dig into the details and seem so easily manipulated by a narrative in alignment with their fears.
Staver's counsel to Davis has simply been bad advice; there was no way her religious beliefs about the exclusivity of marriage as between a man and a woman would absolve her of the duties of her elected office. But, even bad advice successfully keeps religious liberties in news and subsequently, the cash coming in.
The federal court ruling was not enough to stop or satisfy Liberty Counsel from pressing the issue further. Staver filed an appeal to the 6th Circuit Court on Friday asking for "asylum for her (Davis') conscience." The Supreme Court waited until late Monday to deny her request.
It is a point the Slate's, Mark Joseph Stem also makes,
It would be easy to write a story mocking the application’s histrionics and thinly veiled animus. But quite frankly, I’m growing a bit concerned about Davis’ lawyers. Davis is being represented by the Liberty Counsel, a far-right fringe group that specializes in anti-gay litigation. (Naturally, it is also a Christian ministry and a tax-exempt nonprofit.) Founder and Chairman Mathew D. Staver has used Davis’ case to raise money and boost publicity for his group, going so far as to hold a rally for Davis,,,
Law firms regularly use sexy cases to increase their own profiles, and it’s perfectly fine to bandy about your client to further a constitutional cause. (Gay rights litigators do it all the time.) But Staver is taking things too far. The first sign of trouble arose early in the case: When a federal judge ordered Davis to issue licenses or be held in contempt of court, the Liberty Counsel advised her to disobey the ruling. Good lawyers don’t usually tell their clients to defy lawful court orders, especially when jail time is a real possibility. Yet the Liberty Counsel didn’t mind putting their client at risk—perhaps because the idea of a middle-aged woman being hauled off to jail for purportedly following her conscience would send thousands of anti-gay Americans reaching for their pitchforks (and checkbooks).
1) Find inflammatory wedge issues and scapegoats to divide people and force them to choose sidesAlthough I don't think we have quite reached the point of #9, if one reads Franklin Grahams (cited above), that is exactly what he is trying to foment.
2) Persuade people to join your righteous “team” in its effort to purify society. Demand absolute loyalty and obedience to that team’s leaders (even above allegiance to the state
5) Build an insular media cocoon to disseminate propaganda. This vast echo chamber is contemptuous of contradictory facts, suspicious of reason, and impervious to mainstream media scrutiny
9) Constantly agitate and manufacture havoc, because theocracy can only be attained amid chaos. Without a functioning central government, the shadow infrastructure created by fundamentalists makes them the best situated to fill a vacuum, restore order at the price of liberty, and install their regime
“I’m thankful and proud that Americans are standing up against the evil being forced on us. Our religious rights and freedoms are being trampled on,,,. We need more Americans who are willing to take a stand for religious freedoms and biblical values in our communities. If we don’t, we won’t even recognize the America that our children and our grandchildren will be left with. Pray for Kim Davis and for our nation today.”As Benjimen Corey notes,
First, evil is not being forced upon Kim Davis. It is her religious belief that same sex marriage is wrong, and she’s entitled to that belief. No one is forcing her to divorce her 4th husband and marry a woman– that would be an obvious violation of her religious liberty. But doing her job as a clerk of the court? This has nothing to do with religious liberty.,,,This particular case however, isn’t about Ms. Davis being free to practice her religion and it isn’t about having the freedom to conform into the image and likeness of Christ. Instead, this is about Ms. Davis’s attempt to force her religious restrictions on the general public and an attempt to conform the secular government into the image and likeness of Christ (or her version thereof).And this is why she and Franklin are wrong, even if their theology were somehow proven to be right. Nowhere in the New Testament does it tell us we are to take control of government and shape it to look like Jesus. Jesus never advocates taking political power, or using the power of government to build the Kingdom of God. Never.,,,Ms. Davis has essentially hijacked a portion of the government and is now using that arm of government– not in an attempt to live out her religious convictions– but to force those convictions on other people. If a person from any other religious tradition were to do this, Franklin Graham would be pitching a fit. [My emphasis]