by Thomas M. Messner
The Heritage Foundation
January 30, 2014
Backgrounder
Legal recognition of same-sex marriage will increase the potential for conflicts with religious freedom. The recent Supreme Court ruling in United States v. Windsor intensifies these concerns by characterizing traditional marriage policy as a form of irrational prejudice. Public policy should value, not condemn, those who uphold the ideal of a mother and father for children. Even public officials who support same-sex marriage should support religious freedom. At the federal level, policy should protect religious freedom and rights of conscience in areas that include tax exemptions, deductions for charitable contributions, conditions attached to government programs, federal spending in educational and social service programs, and accreditation of higher education institutions.



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