Paxton, IL — Using the state to prevent two consenting adults from entering into a contract of marriage, regardless of their genders or sexual preference, is tyranny. Anyone who attempts to control what consenting adults do in their private lives and on their own private property facilitates said tyranny. These actions are abhorrent, and they have no place in a society that desires to be free.
Bottom line, if gay marriage bothers you — don’t get gay married — and if you use the government to prevent gay people from marrying, you are acting against society’s desire to be free.
That being said, if you think people should be able to live their lives how they see fit as long as they do no harm to others, you should apply this rule — to everyone.
When people challenge the state for their right to do what they want only to turn around and use that same state to force others to do what they want, hypocrisy is born.
This hypocrisy is exactly what is playing out in Paxton, Illinois.
Timber Creek Bed and Breakfast is owned and operated by Jim Walder, who happens to be a devout Christian. In 2011, Walder made the decision to do with his own property what he wanted to do — by refusing to host a same-sex wedding.
“We will never host same-sex civil unions. We will never host same-sex weddings even if they become legal in Illinois,” said Walder in 2011.
“We believe homosexuality is wrong and unnatural based on what the Bible says about it. If that is discrimination, I guess we unfortunately discriminate.”
No one denies that the comments above aren’t regressive, and refusing service to people because of their sexual preference is closed-minded. However, it is Walder’s right to do as he wishes on his own property, as this harms no one.
Walder, just like gay couples who choose to marry, should be free to make their own decisions in their private lives as well as on their own private property, so long as they do not cause harm. However, the state does not think so.
Just as government denied same-sex couples the right to marry, government is denying Walder’s right to do with his own property what he wishes.
“In our opinion, forcing a small business with one employee to host gay marriage which violates the owners sincerely-held Biblical belief that marriage is between one man and one woman is an extreme circumstance, especially when marriage has been understood for thousands of years to be a union between one man and one woman,” said Walder.
Regardless of Walder’s reasoning for choosing not to accept a gay marriage at his establishment, it is his right to do so — as it is his property. However, in response to Walder’s refusal, a couple filed a formal complaint with the state’s Department of Human Rights, arguing that it is a rejection of the Illinois Human Rights Act.
According to the Christian Post, in March, Administrative Law Judge Michael R. Robinson ordered TimberCreek to pay the same-sex couple $30,000 for causing emotional distress, plus over $50,000 in attorney fees.
“Respondent [must] pay each Complainant $15,000, which represents damages for the emotional distress arising out [of] its refusal to host their same-sex, civil union ceremony,” ordered Robinson.
“Respondent [must] be directed to cease and desist from violating the Human Rights Act by discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation when denying same-sex couples access to its facilities and services for their civil union ceremonies and/or marriages.”
Walder will now be forced, against his will, to allow people, that he does not want there, onto his private property, and render them services. It is frightening how close this situation is to de facto slavery.
The backward nature of the state claiming that it is a human rights violation to refuse to allow someone onto your own private property would be laughable if it wasn’t so chilling.
By the state’s logic, anyone should have the right to force private property owners to do their bidding, even if that means violating property rights as well as their very beliefs. The implications are shocking.
Imagine if this method was applied to all private property. The state could force you to accept complete strangers into your home. Sure, that seems extreme, but it is a difference in degree only, not kind.
“This feels like blatant reverse discrimination against all business owners, Christian or otherwise, by the IHRC, which is supposed to be an unbiased, neutral party in resolving complaints,” said Walder.
And so continues the logic of the state — to protect the rights of some individuals, we must violate the rights of others.
Please share this article so that people may understand that violating anyone’s rights is wrong, even if you disagree with that person’s beliefs.