Can we force ci­vil­ity?

The Washington Times Weekly - - Letters To The Editor - LAWRENCE AN­DRADE Tewks­bury, Mas­sachusetts

The Supreme Court should be most con­cerned about en­cour­ag­ing ci­vil­ity (“Colorado baker who won Supreme Court case says he’s ‘thrilled’ with out­come,” Web, June 5). For peo­ple of faith, wed­dings are in­her­ently loaded with re­li­gious sig­nif­i­cance. Thus the is­sue of artists us­ing their craft to cre­ate cel­e­bra­tory sym­bols for wed­dings in­her­ently in­volves free­dom of speech and re­li­gion is­sues.

The court should rec­og­nize that flo­ral ar­range­ments and cakes are not mere com­merce but are laden with very sen­si­tive First Amend­ment is­sues. It should rec­og­nize that those is­sues de­serve spe­cial treat­ment in dis­crim­i­na­tion cases. Valid First Amend­ment in­ter­pre­ta­tion de­mands this.

Law is a form of force. To re­sort to it to get one’s way over the con­vic­tions of other cit­i­zens only cre­ates hos­til­ity and re­sent­ment. If the court fails to rec­og­nize that fact it will only un­der­mine the re­spect it de­serves.

It is bet­ter to dis­cour­age re­sorts to law (force) through its rul­ings, bet­ter to seek to pro­mote a spirit of ci­vil­ity and tol­er­ance by rec­og­niz­ing the sen­si­tiv­ity of the is­sues in­volved.

Why do same-sex couples in­sist on ob­tain­ing the ser­vices of those who have their own cher­ished con­vic­tions? Why not sim­ply shop else­where rather than to re­sort to force?

How do rul­ings that en­cour­age the ap­pli­ca­tion of le­gal force over valid First Amend­ment pro­tec­tions fos­ter true ci­vil­ity? The Amer­i­can peo­ple should de­mand an an­swer to that ques­tion from the jus­tices be­fore the next rul­ing is ren­dered.

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