When Kim Davis was jailed for refusing to perform same sex marriages last week, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul took the opportunity to weigh in on the subject of religious liberty. Paul called the judge’s action “absurd” and said the use of force was a violation of religious freedom:
“I think it’s absurd to put someone in jail for exercising their religious liberty,” Sen. Paul, R-KY, told CNN. “If you want to convince people that same-sex ‘marriage’ is something that’s acceptable I would say try to persuade people” instead of using state force.
Paul also predicted that the new tactics being displayed by the LGBT movement would backfire, both politically and in the realm of public opinion:
“If we’re going to use the federal government, and we’re going to get involved in every state and locality, you know what’s going to happen? It’s going to harden people’s resolve on this issue,” Paul added. “There’s going to be no open-mindedness on this.”
…He said if state force continued to be exerted against Christian believers, “I think what’s going to happen as a result of this is states and localities are just going to opt out of the marriage business completely.”
This line of thinking isn’t new for Rand Paul. In the past, the Senator has advocated getting government (especially the federal government) out of marriage and has tried to rally conservatives around the idea as an alternative to redefining the institution.
Nick Arnold is a researcher for American Principles In Action.