The BBC News has a headline today, “Irish grapple with gay rights in New York and Ireland.” Mayor Bill de Blasio is sitting out this year’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Bill Donahue of the very anti-modernist Catholic League said: “I have gone on the radio inviting gays to march with the Catholic League, provided they do not draw attention to themselves or to some extrinsic cause.” I say Fintan O’Toole of the Irish Times hits it on the head when he writes: “Being personally benign is neither here nor there….It’s good that most of those who oppose gay marriage love and respect and cherish individual gay people, though they should hardly expect a pat on the back for not hating their fellow citizens. But….the whole point of the law is that it’s not about giving people equal status because you like them. It’s about freeing people from subjection to the arbitrariness of other people’s benevolence.”
The U.S. Supreme Court is going to find itself affirming this very point in the near future (2015), with, I expect, Anthony Kennedy being the fifth vote. Or it could be a bigger majority, if a couple other Catholic justices are paying attention to Fintan O’Toole.