It is easy to spin Kim Davis's story as one of persecution. It's easy to get on FOX News and warn pastors that this is what's coming for them if they refuse to perform same-sex marriage. But to do so would be dishonest. Because the reality is that Kim Davis is not being persecuted for her faith, she is reaping the consequences of refusing to do her job as an agent of the state.
The Kim Davis situation raises interesting questions about the meaning and practical effect of the freedom of religion. Although, for reasons that I will explain, the issue today is one of public policy, rather than constitutional law, the evolution of constitutional principles in this realm is illuminating.
Women and minorities have secured some rights that are here to stay -- different for each group -- while other rights are still elusive or being stripped away. There is always a backlash to equality, and it could last a very long time, as bigotry doesn't die easily. Like every group, LGBT people have to remain vigilant.
In celebration of Obergefell v. Hodge we went out for drinks at Legal Sea Foods in Harvard Square. While enjoying the evening summer breeze, my spouse said we could have this experience all year if we moved to a milder climate. I snapped back and said, "I ain't moving to Georgia!" And that's what marriage equality looks like.