NEW YORK - Today Harvard University professor Mary Ann Glendon and Princeton University professor Robert George released a letter calling on Greg Ball, Dean Skelos and the New York Senate to provide stronger religious liberty protection in the same-sex marriage bill before the NY state Senate.
The academic experts who signed the letter (which also includes Matthew Franck) wrote: "We understand the enormous pressure you are under to pass a bill that the Governor wants. But rushing such a bill through with inadequate or counterfeit religious liberty and conscience protections would be a tragedy and a profound injustice” and urged consideration of the bill be delayed to another session when language could be carefully considered.
NOM's president Brian Brown applauded the letter:
“NOM opposes gay marriage regardless, but those who pretend to promise religious liberties would be protected had better be careful if they want that promise to even partially come true. Cuomo’s bill doesn’t even try to provide minimal protections for individuals and businesses, who will face litigation and other penalties for acting on their beliefs about marriage.”
For an example, Brown pointed to Bill Banuchi, a New Yorker who runs a nondenominational, Christian marriage counseling center in Newbergh, New York. The Cuomo administration claims that the marriage measure would protect explicitly religious organizations, but Rev.’s Banuchi’s center has no religious affiliation. Cuomo's bill would require him and other marriage counselors to shut down if they could not in good faith counsel gay couples on how to sustain their relationships.
“Gay marriage will have consequences" said Brian Brown, "And those consequences are likely to fall hardest on parents, religious individuals and small business owners who receive zero protection in this bad bill."