Bill on clergy is unnecessary

The majority of Texas state senators seem to think members of the clergy are in danger of losing their religious freedom and, therefore, need a new law to protect them.

Senators Tuesday passed a bill authored by Republican Sen. Craig Estes of Wichita Falls aimed to protect ministers from being forced to perform wedding ceremonies that violate their religious beliefs.

Aside from appeasing a conservative base and striking another superficial blow against gay marriage before the Supreme Court rules on the issue, the legislation is pointless. There’s already a constitutional guarantee of religious freedom, and there are no laws in place that would jeopardize that.

While Estes says his legislation is not designed to discriminate against anyone, it appears it was contrived to play into the fear and prejudice of those who object to the idea of same-sex marriage.

The bill now goes to the House, where it should be rejected.