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Man who sued politicians for flying Pride flags loses case

Josh Jackman March 30, 2018
Principal Pete Cahall, waves a rainbow flag, symbolizing gay pride, at a rally of about 1000 Woodrow Wilson High School students and gay supporters June 9, 2014 at Woodrow Wilson High School in Washington, DC. The rally was held to counter a planned protest by Westboro Baptist Church, the Kansas-based organization known for anti-gay picketing at funerals. AFP PHOTO/Paul J. Richards (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

Canada's Supreme Court ruling is being praised by LGBT rights campaigners. (Getty)

A federal judge has thrown out a lawsuit aimed at stopping lawmakers from displaying Pride flags outside their offices.

Chris Sevier, the anti-LGBT activist who has tried – and failed – to marry his laptop five times, sued four Democratic members of Congress last year because, he said, homosexuality was a religion.

According to Sevier, this meant that by showing the Pride flag, Susan Davis and Alan Lowenthal of California, Earl Blumenauer of Oregon and Don Beyer of Virginia were violating the Establishment Clause, a constitutional prohibition on the government declaring a religion.

(Twitter/repsusandavis)

Court documents note the claimant told the court that “‘the [h]omosexual church’ is ‘the largest denomination’ of ‘the overall church of ‘western expressive individualism postmodern moral relativism,’ which posits that ‘nobody’s version of morality as a basis of law matters except for the private moral code that [the adherent] personally advocat[es].'”

The documents add: “So, according to Sevier, unless Defendants ‘install a flag that represents people who self-identify as polygamists, machinists, zoophiles, and heterosexuals,’ their actions ‘treat… the homosexual denomination of… the church of moral relativism with disproportionate favor'”.

Judge Randolph D. Moss of the US District Court for Washington DC was not convinced, safe to say.

TOPSHOT - Two women react during the Gay Pride parade on September 17, 2017 in Belgrade. Serbia's lesbian prime minister on September 17 joined hundreds of activists with rainbow flags for Belgrade's annual gay pride march, an event held under heavy security in the conservative country. Belgrade's first Pride march, in 2001, ended with police firing in the air to disperse anti-gay nationalists and skinheads who stoned and beat participants. / AFP PHOTO / ANDREJ ISAKOVIC (Photo credit should read ANDREJ ISAKOVIC/AFP/Getty Images)
(Getty)

“If the mere acceptance of homosexuality — or support for gay rights—constitutes a ‘religion’ for Establishment Clause purposes, then the same conclusion would presumably follow for any value judgment about how people should or should not live their lives,” wrote the judge.

“The Establishment Clause’s meaning is not so capacious.”

In a thorough dismissal of Sevier’s case, Judge Moss continued: “The gay rights movement bears no trappings of ‘religion’ as that concept is widely understood, and Sevier has not plausibly alleged that a reasonable person would perceive the display of the rainbow flags as religious in nature.

A couple kiss as one of them holds a rainbow flag the WorldPride 2017 parade in Madrid on July 1, 2017. Revellers took to the rainbow streets of Madrid today in the world's biggest march for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender rights. Carried along by the slogan "Viva la vida!" (Live life!), the parade of 52 floats started partying its way through the centre later afternoon in celebration of sexual diversity, under high security. / AFP PHOTO / OSCAR DEL POZO (Photo credit should read OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP/Getty Images)
(Getty)

“Common sense… forecloses Sevier’s claim,” he added.

The judge noted that had Sevier had offered “no legal support” for his positions.

“Instead, he has presented the Court with thousands of pages of news clippings and affidavits from his supporters expressing their opposition to homosexuality, and more recently, with filings from other litigation in which he alleges similar injuries,” he noted.

Spain World Pride
(Getty)

In a statement, one of the defendants, Lowenthal, said: “I will continue to proudly fly the Pride Flag outside my office as a symbol of love, peace, equality, and humanity to every visitor to Capitol Hill.

“I will never give in to intolerance, even when cloaked in the guise of legality.”

Sevier has already moved on to promoting legislation across the US which would automatically ban pornography on all internet devices unless a user pays $20.

More: chris sevier, court, Law, Politics, pride flag, US, US, Washington DC

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