Burning Kohl? Activists Eye Pro-Marriage Judge

Barb Wire

Thomas Kohl may be a judge, but that doesn’t mean his opinion lines up with the Supreme Court’s.

The 18-year bench veteran made headlines earlier this week for becoming the second judge to step away from officiating marriage ceremonies on religious grounds. Responding to a question from local reporters, he said, “Last summer, for personal faith-based reasons, I decided not to perform weddings as a judge.” Pressed to explain why, he reiterated, “This is a personal choice.”

It’s no secret that Kohl, who wrote a book about how faith sustained him through his daughter’s murder, speaks regularly at churches. Now he’s putting those convictions to practice, trying to avoid the investigation his colleague, Oregon Judge Vance Day, is currently under for voicing his opposition to same-sex marriage services. In his case, LGBT activists are launching an all-out smear campaign — all because Day asked that his staff to send same-sex marriage requests to other judges. Not only does that accommodate the couples, but it frees Day from the burden of violating his faith! But instead of allowing the accommodation — one which allows the coexistence of marriage and religious liberty that liberals say they want — activists have filed formal complaints.

Once again, it’s obvious that what the Left wants isn’t compromise, but capitulation.

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Americans have witnessed that same ideological intolerance in the Kim Davis case, and now in the very benches that were meant to interpret the constitutional rights they’re being denied. As I told the crowd outside the Kentucky jail where Kim was being held earlier this week, if you’re a Christian — a true follower of Jesus Christ, Scripture tells us we are to submit to those in authority. There should be no better citizens than Christians. But Scripture doesn’t stop there. As the disciples, those closest to Jesus, made clear: when the arbitrary edicts of man conflict with the explicit instructions of God, we cannot — we must not submit — no matter the cost.

It’s time for Christian leaders who hold positions of public trust to resist the edicts of unelected and virtually unaccountable rulers who issue unjust edicts that conflict with the truth of God. And who better to know those laws than judges like Thomas Kohl?

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

Tony Perkins
Tony Perkins is president of the Washington, D.C.-based Family Research Council. He is a former member of the Louisiana legislature where he served for eight years, and he is recognized as a legislative pioneer for authoring measures like the nation’s first Covenant Marriage law. (Via FRC’s Washington Update. Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.)

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