Saturday, September 5, 2015

Misunderstanding Martyrdom, or "You have not the authority."



Let me ask you something:

Do you know the difference between a victim and a martyr?

I ask this because to me it seems like the majority of people don't know the difference. So, as a quick review:

A victim is someone harmed, injured, or killed as a result of a crime, accident, or other event or action; a martyr is someone killed for their beliefs. You can kill someone for a reason other than their beliefs, and hence that's why all martyrs are victims but not all victims are martyrs.

I bring this up in light of the news reports of Kentucky clerk Kim Davis who refuses to issue marriage licenses to gay couples. Many articles have come out proclaiming her a martyr for the fight against gay so-called marriage. This might make sense since all the pro-side has is the poorly thought out Supreme Court ruling (whereas the righteous side has the Constitution).

but a martyr? Really? 

You can see how people like me might take offense at someone being called that when a) the people giving the label are not the ones who have authority to do so and b) if one were to look at all the declared martyrs, one will find besides their deaths, they were also consistent in what they believed.

This is key because much like certain beliefs (such as the Christian view on God, the concept of the Davidic Kingdom and the End Times), Christianity gets its view of martyrdom from the Jewish faith. 
In Judaism, martyrdom must include dedication to your faith; in other words, one must be consistent in what you believe concerning your faith. In fact, martyr comes from the Greek word for witness (as in, a witness for Jesus) but to be a witness, one must follow all teachings of their Divine Master. 

In news reports, it was pointed out the clerk had been married multiple times and even had children out of wedlock, both actions condemned by Jesus. Granted, these happened before her conversion, but I have yet to see any indication of whether she thinks both actions are wrong now or if she ever repented of her past misdeeds. 

Thus, it's not clear whether the martyr label works here.

As I predicted when I first heard of this case, someone has made a connection between her and St Thomas More, especially in light of her being sent to jail. Much like the martyrdom claim, this comparison doesn't work either.

For those not familiar with the story (or the 1966 film A Man for All Seasons), Thomas More was Lord High Chancellor under King Henry VIII. Although he had an historical disagreement with Henry on whether Henry could divorce his wife Catherine of Aragon, More resigned from office rather than keep his job by signing an oath that made the king supreme head of a church. That, combined with other events (one of which included not attending Henry's marriage to Ann Boleyn and several others that involved him saying "you have not the authority), More was tried, convicted and beheaded for high treason. He was noted 

Let's look at some key points again: resignation, appearances in relation to belief, and proper authority.

In relation to these, I conclude she should resign her position, because as long as she remains county clerk, her signature remains on the marriage licenses, thus she is legally culpable for these abominations and thus she appears to be supporting it. While she is correct in saying no court and no earthly authority has the right to redefine marriage, she is wrong in her approach. 

These sick people hate God's word and all responsibly it stands for. Stop giving them an inch and heed the lesson from St Thomas More:


  1. What part of the constitution goes against gay marriage?

    1. I'm glad you asked. That would be the 1st Amendment. Not only does that guarantee some freedoms explicitly (freedom of speech, religion, petition, etc) but it also guarantees some freedoms implicitly…in this instance the freedom of exclusion.

    2. The first amendment does guarantee the freedom of assembly which implicitly gives us the freedom of exclusion as you note, but that applied to private institutions, not government institutions. Only businesses that do not charge (like most churches) can refuse to marry any given couple. Any government run businesses or public accommodations (businesses that charge for marriage services) cannot refuse any two legally entitled people (of age, not related, etc.) the right to marriage.

    3. You are misguided. There is no such thing as a business that doesn't charge someone for something. Furthermore, you forgot about the 10th Amendment and you forgot about who does have the authority to decide what is a marriage.
      It's not the state…never has been and never will be.
      And what right? The Supreme Court didn't say it was a right.

    4. There certainly are, many churches don't charge for weddings (or at least they're not supposed to or they'd become a public accommodation), although it is customary in many churches to "tip" the pastor leading the ceremony. Also, no, I didn't forget the 10th amendment. SCOTUS ruled that gay marriage is legal throughout the US (so the 10th amendment wouldn't apply here as the federal government has ruled on the subject). You can read their ruling here (go to the bottom of page 28 for the ruling). According to how the three branches of government are constructed, SCOTUS is simply meant to interpret the law (whereas the legislative branch makes the law and the executive branch enforces it)--their ruling indicates that the constitution grants gay couples equal rights with straight couples. As far as your comment "The Supreme Court didn't say it was a right," read the portion of their ruling I mentioned earlier in this comment, specifically the line "The Constitution grants them that right."

    5. You didn't say that. You said businesses. A church is not a business.
      The Court also ruled at one point that segregation, abortion, slavery, and forced confiscation of property are all legal. Were they right on those?
      No…the Constitution does no such thing. And if you think it does, then you shouldn't mind if an amendment was added banning gay "marriage" once and for all.

    6. Sorry, you're right, I wasn't too clear in my wording. I'd personally consider it a business but you're entitled to your own opinions. Yes, they did, and abortion and forced confiscation of property are still legal within certain terms (ex: abortion when the fetus is under a certain age, confiscation of property associated with a crime, etc.) On some of these issues I'd agree that they were wrong (like segregation and slavery) and they were changed because we agreed as a society that they were wrong (not to say that abortion and confiscation of property are not). That's the beauty of our society--we can continuously evaluate our laws to see if what we are doing and what we allow is just. Also, if SCOTUS rules that the correct interpretation of the constitution is that it extends the right of marriage to all citizens, then you simply saying "it doesn't" won't change anything. And yes, I would mind if such an amendment was added as it would clearly infringe upon the rights of gay citizens of the US.

    7. And just like that, you've shown you have no idea what you're talking about. Norma McCorvey (aka Jane Roe) has since admitted the court's ruling was based on her false testimony and now no longer agrees with the pro-choice stand. The personal property ruling boiled down to "we must make an example out of this farmer before anyone else tries this."
      On what basis did society change its mind? It certainly wasn't from atheism.
      Actually, me saying "it doesn't" will change it. At one point, the Court ruled it unconstitutional for the state to collect taxes on personal income…that was until the public passed Amendment 16.
      What rights? You don't have the right to decide what marriage should be and neither does the state.
      Guess who that leaves?

  2. Oh boy. Ok, so abortion is still legal no matter what Ms. McCorvey did. Also, no one said laws are formed from atheistic principles--you're the one that continues to say that--stop with the strawman arguments. Society as a whole (or rather the people we elect to represent us in the US) decide what is legal. And no, you saying "it doesn't" on some random blog does nothing--if you want something done then go take a stand and be vocal. For your final statement, I don't say anything about what marriage should be, we as a people do and the consensus is that everyone deserves equal rights. Tell me, why do you care so much what two men or two women do in the bedroom? Do you have nothing else to think about that you have to concern yourself so much with the sex lives of others? And if by your last question you mean to imply that your god is left...well, I won't judge you for having imaginary friends but I also won't humor the idea.

    1. *SIGH*
      If the basis for the law is a false pretense, then the law is void. Not my fault the court can't get over its pride and admit they were wrong about it. There is either the law of God or the law of nothing. "You can't serve God and mammon."
      So if society says murder is no longer wrong, that's that? That's absolute nonsense.
      Then your refutation comes to nothing.
      No…we don't have the authority to say what marriage is. Only the Church of God has that authority.
      Why should we not care? Even the CDC has admitted the vast majority of new STD and AIDS cases come from gay people.
      You expect me to take your category mistake seriously?

    2. lol, I think a court of law would disagree with you there. If a law is on the books then it's still the law no matter if you disagree with it or not. Also, I really doubt the court would accept the law of your god unless it's on the books--we abide by the law of man. Also, not sure who "mammon" is but I don't serve him (or her?) or your god.
      Clearly the government has spoken on what constitutes marriage and that's what the American people will adhere to--not what your religion thinks is right.

    3. I almost didn't approve your comment because of its obvious arrogance, but all of it must be refuted.
      No, they will not disagree with me. If this were any other type of case, the courts would not hesitate to nullify the ruling and set up a retrial. Why should Supreme Court rulings be any different? They changed their mind when it came to segregation so it can change their minds on other issues.
      The rest of your post can be torn down by pointing out bans on gay marriage were on the books, and voted on by the people. So either you're being a hypocrite or you don't really mean what you're saying.
      And who are these American people you speak of? I can cite three stories of public officials who say they will not comply and I hope more grow every day.
      One or the other has to go: the ruling or God and it's going to end up being the ruling.