After a vote in which a minority of two or three percent were denied civil equality under the law and in which many thousands of couples had their legal marriages voided, Jonah Goldberg thinks the real victims are Mormons:

It’s just that Mormons are the most vulnerable of the culturally conservative religious denominations and therefore the easiest targets for an organized campaign against religious freedom of conscience.

He cites an ad campaign that wasn't sanctioned by the No On 8 campaign, and summarizes the wave of peaceful protests by tens of thousands across the country by picking a few of the worst incidents of the fringes as a way to discredit the civil rights movement. He cannot in any way substantiate the notion that the marriage movement amounts to "an organized campaign against religious freedom of conscience."

(If you want to read Goldberg's real views on "the divinization of conscience," see here.) I know of no campaogn for civil marriage equality that is not emphatic that religious dissenters retain an absolute right to refuse to recognize or perform such marriages. I for one will fight for their right to dissent just as fiercely as I will fight for my own civil right to marry.

Jonah, moreover, does not mention the fact that the Mormon hierarchy planned this campaign for eleven years, that their decision to make this a public issue is unprecedented in the history of the LDS church, and that their donations made up a huge proportion of the Prop 8 forces. He doesn't mention that their public bluff that they only care about the m-word and favor rights for gay couples has been called in Utah, where gay rights advocates are demanding the LDS church back strong civil union laws (and the LDS church is resisting). He cites no instance in which any Mormon anywhere has had any right removed or threatened by marriage equality.

Apart from that: another triumph of intellectual honesty.

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