James Taranto reads the NYT editorials so we don't have to:
But the most revealing Kristof assertion was this one: "The basic principle of American life is that we try to respect religious beliefs, and accommodate them where we can."
That prompted an incandescently furious response from Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary:
Nicholas Kristof's statement is light years beyond the President in disrespect for religious liberty.…The language of accommodation is almost as old as the Constitution itself, but it was never framed as Kristof frames it—certainly not by the founders who spoke of "inalienable rights" granted to human beings by the Creator's endowment.…
With this one simplistic and condescending sentence he throws religious liberty under the bus and reveals what makes sense to so many in the secular elite.
They will try their best, they promise, to respect our religious beliefs, and to "accommodate them where we can."
That's it. Don't dare ask for anything more.
Religious liberty—no scare quotes here—is one of America's basic principles, the first freedom in the Bill of Rights. The separation of church and state protects religious minorities, and nonreligious ones, from the coercive imposition of religious law. It is also a bulwark against a secular government's impositions on private conscience. To the Times editorialists, it is at best an inconvenience.
And the paper's reporters aren't much better. Here's what passed for balance in a story by Laurie Goodstein:
The uproar threatens to embroil the Catholic church in a bitter election-year political battle while deepening internal rifts within the church. On the one side are traditionalists who believe in upholding Catholic doctrine to the letter, and on the other, modernists who believe the church must respond to changing times and a pluralistic society.
Albert Mohler is a Baptist. This columnist is an agnostic. But I'm with Mike Huckabee, another Baptist, who said: "We're all Catholics now."