When an employee signs a contract with his employer, he agrees to abide by certain house rules. Subsequently, the employee willfully violates the contract. After he is fired, he threatens to sue. Meanwhile, an online petition calling for his reinstatement emerges. Sounds pretty basic: the employer had every right to enforce the contract, and efforts by outsiders to bully the employer into acquiescence are unethical. But wait—this case involves homosexuality; to many this constitutes a game-changer. Different issues are at stake now.
A homosexual teacher at St. Lucy’s Priory High School outside Los Angeles was wed to another man on July 1. The school found out about it, and the teacher was terminated. The school said that what its teachers do in private is not its business. However, “public displays of behavior that are directly contrary to church teachings are inconsistent with these values.” They didn’t make up these rules on the fly. “These values are incorporated into the contractual obligations of each of our instructors and other employees.”
There are those who, like Republican gay activist David Lampo, consider it absurd to maintain that gay marriage threatens religious liberty. It would be instructive to know what in the world they think is going on in this case. The truth is that it has been known for years that gay rights and religious rights are on a collision course. Importantly, only one of those rights is enshrined in the First Amendment. Hint: it isn’t the one that deals with sex.