Suppose the court had gone a different way
Dateline: Mawkish county courthouse, 2017
The young couple, clad in jeans, t-shirts and tennis shoes, made their way to the counter. County clerk Betty Morrell looked them up and down as they offered papers, filled out in blue ballpoint pen.
“We’d like to apply for a marriage license,” said the young man. He seemed nervous, a little breathless. His hand shook. Morell took the paper and scanned it.
“Amber Harris, age seventeen. You going to marry this young man?”
The young woman brushed back her stringy blonde hair. “Yes maam,” she said. We’re of legal age!”
The clerk leaned farther over the counter to examine the young woman’s belly; it was flat. “Hm,” she said. “You’re not pregnant, are you?”
“You shouldn’t ask that question!”, protested the young man. “We don’t need your approval to get married!”
Morrel looked down at the paper again. Then she looked closely at him: “Listen, uh, Brent… ever since the Kim Davis case of 2015, you DO need my approval – my personal approval – to get a marriage license. The court decided that clerks are personally signing off on the marriage being applied for. It’s a big responsibility, and we take it seriously.”
The young couple tried to protest, but it was no use. “Look at you,” said the clerk; “you have no plan, no resources, and girlie, all you want to do is get out of the house. And you want to make it worse by marrying a man in his twenties who will sponge off you and cheat on you. License denied!”
“We’ll be back!” said the young man. “Just you wait!” And with that they turned and left. A tired-looking woman in her late twenties stepped to the counter.
“I’m sorry you had to see that,” said the clerk. “What can I do for you?”
“I’d like to apply for a concealed-carry permit,” said the woman. “The judge put a restraining order on my ex, but I’m afraid he’s going to kill me.”
“Oh, my, that’s awful, honey,” said the clerk. “But I can’t give you a carry permit – I’m Quaker, and it’s against my religion!”
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- Fortunately the court decided that the clerk isn’t required to sign off on every marriage, because that just wouldn’t make any damn sense at all. How exactly would we run a society where everyone has to abide by everyone else’s religion?
- The government does respect Kim Davis’ beliefs. She has every right to have them and abide by them, when acting as Kim Davis.
- Stupidity, not religion, put Kim Davis in jail.
- Cuttlefish expands on The Right To Swing Your Fist