Controversial Rowan County, Ky., clerk Kim Davis should be sent back to jail if she interferes with her office’s ability to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, says Americans United for Separation of Church and State.
“Reports have surfaced that Kim Davis intends to violate the court order by again denying marriage licenses to same-sex couples,” said Barry W. Lynn, executive director of Americans United. “If Davis does that, she deserves to go back behind bars.”
U.S. District Judge David L. Bunning ordered Davis released today under the condition that she not interfere with the ability of her deputy clerks to issue licenses to all couples who are legally permitted to obtain them. Several media outlets, however, have reported that Davis doesn’t intend to abide by that condition.
Davis has refused to issue marriage licenses to any couples in Rowan County because she opposes same-sex marriage. Her staff was willing to issue the licenses, but she ordered them not to.
Lynn expressed dismay over the Davis saga and said efforts by Religious Right groups to portray her as a hero are offensive.
“Kim Davis’ supporters who believe she is akin to Martin Luther King are delusional,” Lynn said. “The woman is much more like George Wallace. Davis is abusing the authority of her office to restrict rights, not expand them. That makes all the difference.”
Added Lynn, “Davis believes her religious beliefs give her the right to tell others what to do. Her efforts to pose as a ‘religious freedom’ martyr are laughable. If she really believes she can’t do her job, she ought to do the honorable thing and resign.”
Americans United is a religious liberty watchdog group based in Washington, D.C. Founded in 1947, the organization educates Americans about the importance of church-state separation in safeguarding religious freedom.