NOM BLOG

"Iconic" Annapolis, Maryland Trolley Forced to Shut Down Because of SSM

 

The Baltimore Sun:

An Annapolis company whose old-fashioned trolleys are iconic in the city's wedding scene has abandoned the nuptial industry rather than serve same-sex couples.

The owner of Discover Annapolis Tours said he decided to walk away from $50,000 in annual revenue instead of compromising his Christian convictions when same-sex marriages become legal in Maryland in less than a week. And he has urged prospective clients to lobby state lawmakers for a religious exemption for wedding vendors.

... Wedding vendors elsewhere who refused to accommodate same-sex couples have faced discrimination lawsuits — and lost. Legal experts said Discover Annapolis Tours sidesteps legal trouble by avoiding all weddings.

... The trolley company's decision, publicized by a straight groom offended by what he called "repressive bigotry," offers a snapshot of a local business navigating a new landscape in Maryland's wedding industry, and leaving it behind for a competitor to swoop in.

The head of the Maryland Wedding Professionals Association said the trolley company is the second vendor to refuse business over the state's same-sex marriage law, which voters upheld in November. The Maryland clergyman who led opposition to same-sex marriage called the trolley company's choice to abandon profits on principle "gutsy" and predicted that more businesses would quietly follow suit.

... Frank Schubert, the political strategist who ran campaigns against same-sex marriage in Maryland and three other states this year, said opponents predicted collateral damage from legalizing same-sex unions.

"This is exactly what happens," Schubert said, adding that religious liberty is "right in the cross hairs of this debate. … The law doesn't protect people of faith. It simply doesn't."

Schubert pointed to a handful of other examples publicized in news reports across the country of wedding vendors sued for refusing to accommodate a same-sex ceremony: a pair of Vermont innkeepers, a New Jersey church group and a New Mexico wedding photographer.

34 Comments

  1. Alan E.
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    "The owner of Discover Annapolis Tours said he decided to walk away from $50,000 in annual revenue instead of compromising his Christian convictions when same-sex marriages become legal in Maryland in less than a week."

    Key words: Owner Decided

  2. Barb Chamberlan
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

    Don't worry, pseudo-marriage won't affect you in any way. Unless, of course, you have any moral convictions.

  3. Juston
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    Key word: "Owner Decided"

    ...because otherwise he would be FORCED to go against his beliefs. He would likely gladly stay in business if he wasn't forced to go against his priciples.

  4. Alan E.
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

    @Juston he would have to discriminate against gay people, which was already illegal under Maryland law before marriage was made available.

  5. Posted December 28, 2012 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

    @Alan E.
    Not bowing to the sin of same-sex "marriage," is not discrimination against gay people. Membership in the glbt community is a choice, it is not like skin color. Homosexuality is behavior, not race.

  6. Calvin
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

    So this state has codified hate against a religion. Huh. In short, they have mandated what one can believe in or not to do business in their state. Welcome to the new Nazi religion!

  7. Penelope
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

    Maryland state anti discrimination laws include religion.

  8. Posted December 28, 2012 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

    My favorite part about stories like this is how treating people like garbage for one reason or another somehow becomes an inalienable right and freedom of religion.

  9. LonesomeRhoades
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    Homosexual behavior is a choice. Period.
    Homosexual behavior is against the intentions of nature.
    Homosexuality is condemned in the bible.
    And America bows down to people who choose to engage in immoral, perverse behavior. Wow!

  10. Posted December 28, 2012 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

    Haha Penlope, so is Schubert a liar when he says the law doesn't protect religion, or an idiot?

  11. Son of Adam
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    This is why the redefinition of marriage is unconstitutional since it forces people of faith to choose between their faith and their livelihood. Exactly what the founding fathers hoped to avoid when they wrote the first amendment.

    "so is Schubert a liar when he says the law doesn't protect religion, or an idiot?"

    Neither, he is rightly criticizing a law that blatantly violates the constitution.

  12. Will Fisher
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    @Son of Adam,
    If SSM is unconstitutional then you may seek redress through the courts. You should have plenty of potential plaintiffs. Plus, you can introduce the Regnerus study.

  13. Stephanie
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    Glad they shut it down. If you want to discriminate and be hateful and don't want to follow the law....bye-bye

  14. Son of Adam
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

    "Key words: Owner Decided"

    It's still coercion, Alan, no matter how you spin it.

  15. Son of Adam
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

    "If SSM is unconstitutional then you may seek redress through the courts. You should have plenty of potential plaintiffs. Plus, you can introduce the Regnerus study."

    That would be a good strategy to apply as more and more examples pile up.

  16. Christian
    Posted December 28, 2012 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

    @Mantronik - you can change skin color. Ever hear of Michael Jackson?

  17. OldKingBlog
    Posted December 29, 2012 at 1:02 am | Permalink

    If I ran that trolley, I would continue to operate it as I always have. People, the left cannot be appeased. The ONLY choice we normal folk have is to go about our business as we always have and simply ignore the demands and desires of the left, no matter how legal (temporarily) their policies may be...

  18. Spunky...
    Posted December 29, 2012 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    @ mantronikk

    If you want to argue that not allowing gay marriage is not discrimination against gay people, then you need to use a different line of reasoning. Regardless of whether being a part of a group is a choice, that group can still be the target of discrimination. For example, practicing Christianity is a choice, but Christians can still be the targets of discrimination.

  19. Posted December 29, 2012 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

    @Spunky,
    A gay man has the exact same marriage options that I have. Gays don't want the right to marry, homosexuals want to REDEFINE marriage, which will end religious freedom and bring about the persecution and prosecution of true Christians.

    The one-man-one-woman definition comes from God himself; straight from the part of Him that became flesh and walked among us 2012 years ago.

    http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%2019:4-6&version=NIV

    The glbt community is fighting against the Word of God, not human perception. And, as for my argument against homofascism, I've written it all down.

    http://heteroseparatist.blogspot.com/2009/07/the-heteroseparatists-internet-manifesto.html

  20. grandmaliberty
    Posted December 29, 2012 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

    there is no such thing as a marriage between 2 people of the same sex... no matter what kind of laws you write... Homosexual couples have a gender identity condition which was once considered a mental condition... until a homosexual phychiatrist decided it wasn't......and I suggest we call homosexuals by that title as there is nothing gay about their lifesyle......

  21. Posted December 29, 2012 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    @Spunky

    A homosexual has the exact same right to marry that I do. REDEFINING marriage is what we're talking about here. And redefining marriage has/will legalize the persecution and prosecution of true Christians. Google "heteroseparatist' to read my entire argument.

  22. Spunky...
    Posted December 29, 2012 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

    @ Mantronikk

    I don't need to use Google--your handle contains a link to your blog.

    My issue isn't about your argument about redefining marriage. I simply wanted to point out that a groups whose existences are defined by choice still can (and do) suffer from discrimination. Wouldn't you agree?

  23. Randy E King
    Posted December 29, 2012 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

    Actions have consequences. This is a fact of life we must all face; regardless of our stations in life.

  24. Posted December 29, 2012 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

    @Spunky

    Yes.

  25. Posted December 29, 2012 at 11:20 pm | Permalink

    Okay, but all people have some sort of "faith". There are no specific people of faith, because there are no people without some sort of faith. It is a very grave mistake to speak of people of faith (meaning they have some sort of Christian or religious type of faith), when all people have to make assumptions about life and values even when they pretend to be people of NO faith at all. Once "people of faith" separate themselves categorically, the senseless though confusing argument of "separation" of Church & State (not in our US Constitution) is applied in legislatures, and possibly confuse legislators enough to vote for SSM. Don't buy into the lie there's people of no faith. Perhaps some mental retards might fit that description, but not people who hope to function fully in society.

  26. Posted December 30, 2012 at 1:13 am | Permalink

    @Spunky

    I recant post 21. What is your definition of discrimination?

  27. Posted December 30, 2012 at 4:55 am | Permalink

    Kudos to the trolley owner! What I don't understand is why there isn't more mobilization to overturn these horrible discrimination laws based on normalizing a homosexuality problem.

    "And he has urged prospective clients to lobby state lawmakers for a religious exemption for wedding vendors."

    Not wedding vendors, there's no justification for applying this to any vendor.

    And I also don't understand why any wedding vendor cannot discriminate based on his clients' political/ideological views. If you are in favor of normalizing homosexuality, or pornography, or bestiality, as a few examples, why shouldn't a vendor have the right to refrain from providing his or her services to you - because of your ideology?

    If people can fire others from their jobs based on political antagonism, why can't they refrain from providing commercial services?

  28. Spunky...
    Posted December 30, 2012 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    @ Mantronikk

    I enjoyed those 3 and a quarter hours when we agreed...

    As for the definition of "discrimination, I'll just steal from Dictionary.com:

    dis·crim·i·na·tion [dih-skrim-uh-ney-shuh n]
    noun

    treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person or thing based on the group, class, or category to which that person or thing belongs rather than on individual merit: racial and religious intolerance and discrimination.

    Note that the "group, class, or category to which that person or thing belongs" does not specify an innate quality, like race or gender. (I might separately argue that with medical advances today, both skin color and biological sex can be changed.) Like me, Dictionary.com gives religion as an example of a group that can face discrimination, even though a person's religion is his choice, just like his sexual behavior.

    Let me try to restate my point in a different way: If someone argues that not allowing gay marriage is discrimination against homosexuals, then it is not relevant to point out that homosexual behavior is a choice. I just think you said something irrelevant in your comment #5, which you then replaced with something relevant in comment #18. When you say, "A homosexual has the exact same right to marry that I do," you suggest that no discrimination is taking place.

  29. Rob
    Posted December 31, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

    The Trolly owner is spiteful and mean spirited.

    In what way does a trolly ride endorse, promote or condone same sex marraige? Is a trolly ride now a religious rite, or am I missing something? Is this man a trolly driver or the Pope?

    The result of this action is to deny ALL loving couples a simple trolly ride on their wedding day. At least until an enlightened, inclusive trolly driver steps in.

  30. Randy E King
    Posted December 31, 2012 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    In the world of the marriage corruption supporter enlightenments and inclusiveness only applies to those that agree with them; all others need not apply.

    The very 1st Amendment of the United States Constitution dictates that no litmus test shall be applied in exchange for access to public commerce. Marriage corruption supporters see no value in this because it permits dissention in the ranks.

    It is past time we take these tyrants up on their call to arms.

  31. Chairm
    Posted January 1, 2013 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    As usual, SSMers show up to state the obvious: the imposition of SSM is intended to intrude against freedom of conscience for the sake of their assertion of the supremacy of gay identity politics over all other considerations.

    Readers might as well believe these SSMers. These are their intended threats and society is right to take them as forewarnings.

  32. Posted January 2, 2013 at 1:53 am | Permalink

    Rob wrote:
    "The Trolly owner is spiteful and mean spirited."

    Not at all. He has wholesome and moral views about sexuality and marriage, based on his Christian religion. Not only that, he has shown that he is not corruptible. He refuses to sell out his conscience and his religion in exchange for a handsome sum of money.

    This man is refusing to have liberals force him to violate his conscience and to shove the normalization of homosexuality (a profound psycho-sexual problem) in his life and business.

    He has shut his business in order not to be persecuted by the State regarding his healthy and wonderful religion.

    What is happening here is that the State is trying to force its own "religion" on this man, and the man is fighting to defend his religious liberty.

    This is another example that shows how fraudulent the notion of separation of Church and State is. A State cannot exist without a dominant ideology. The complaint - and I am not saying it's unjustified - from the people who "separated" the Church from the State was that they otherwise could have no religious/ideological freedom ( including the freedom not to follow any religion) if the State enforced a particular religion. However, even though a person may not follow a particular religion, they will always follow and endorse an ideology. Religion is very similar to non-deistic ideologies if you take out deism.

    Clearly what we see here is the State forcing people to submit to its non-deistic "religion," i.e., it's dominant liberal ideology, therefore squashing their rights to another choice, notably in this example, the Christian religion.

    This only goes to show that the separation between Ideology and State is impossible. Modern society has formally extracted particular religious ideologies from the State, while forcing citizens to submit to the dominant liberal ideology - against their wish, against their conscience, and against the common good of society. The aspect of having a coercive State has not changed however. It's only the dominant group that has changed.

  33. Posted January 2, 2013 at 2:18 am | Permalink

    @Chairm wrote: " the imposition of SSM is intended to intrude against freedom of conscience for the sake of their assertion of the supremacy of gay identity politics over all other considerations."

    Exactly - and related to the above and my comment on separation of Church and State, there was a very interesting comment on another blog about individualism:

    "I get that people are being left increasingly “free” to fornicate and to use smut. That’s the freedom of a barnyard animal; in most cases, unless the animal is a rare breed, the owner does not care who the beast copulates with, or how often the beast acts upon its impulses.

    But the freedom to live unmolested by the State unless we harm others is fading into memory.

    In other words, I believe that we are entering a new age of collectivism and sophisticated tyranny, not an era of individualism … much less “radical individualism.”

    ==============
    To which I added:

    Excellent points and questions on our current pseudo-radical individualist society. In many respects, there is less and less freedom (and consequently less individualism) coupled with the increasing freedom for certain behaviors only, namely ones that are sexually perverted and perverse, dysfunctional, or harmful.

    (p.s. a wonderful New Year to you, Chairm! Nice to see you posting - you won't see me posting on FT in 2013 - check out my two blogs to find out why )

  34. Posted January 4, 2013 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    We need to get a handle on the concept of 'secular' or 'secularism'. I don't see 'secularism' as to be avoided. Secularism is the exercise of people's right to vote, bringing ideas from many (perhaps all) ideologies into a melting pot of sorts which is called the ever-changing 'secular', mass, opinion. If the voting process is honest (difficult to ascertain), then the resulting laws or rules are 'secular', that is: brought about by the free and competitive voting process. Minorities don't like this freedom. Somehow, they want their vote to count more than the vote of others. It is human greed. By this definition of 'secular', it could happen that one religion is effectively favored by the government (if that is the religion of the majority). That would still be a 'secular' society. But many Christians view the word 'secular' as decisions made 'separate' from the Christian value system. It could get to that point, if the majority of voters were or became non-Christians, or worse (for Christians) - anti-Christian. Secularism is not an evil, it follows logically from the concept of a 'free' society. One could ask: Free from what? Well, that changes with time, depending on the majority and the influence of the minorities, within a Representative Republic (USA).