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As one Becket Fund donor told Picarello ruefully, "At least you know you're not in the buggy whip business." Picarello is a Harvard-trained litigator experienced in religious liberty issues.But predicting the legal consequences of as big a change as gay marriage is a job for more than one mind. "Catholic Charities was always at the top of the list," Paula Wisnewski, director of adoption for the Home for Little Wanderers, told the Boston Globe. Catholic Charities of Boston, one of the nation's oldest adoption agencies, had long specialized in finding good homes for hard to place kids.Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healey, the Republican candidate for governor in this fall's election, refused to budge: "I believe that any institution that wants to provide services that are regulated by the state has to abide by the laws of the state," Healey told the Boston Globe on March 2, "and our antidiscrimination laws are some of our most important." From there, it was only a short step to the headline "State Putting Church Out of Adoption Business," which ran over an opinion piece in the Boston Globe by John Garvey, dean of Boston College Law School.
Picarello summarizes: "All the scholars we got together see a problem; they all see a conflict coming.
CATHOLIC CHARITIES OF BOSTON made the announcement on March 10: It was getting out of the adoption business. That same year, partly in response to growing pressure for gay marriage and adoption both here and in Europe, a Vatican statement made clear that placing children with same-sex couples violates Catholic teaching.
The majority ruled that only animus against gay people could explain why anyone would want to treat opposite-sex and same-sex couples differently.
Ron Madnick, president of the Massachusetts chapter of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, agreed with Garvey's assessment: "Even if Catholic Charities ceased receiving tax support and gave up its role as a state contractor, it still could not refuse to place children with same-sex couples." This March, then, unexpectedly, a mere two years after the introduction of gay marriage in America, a number of latent concerns about the impact of this innovation on religious freedom ceased to be theoretical.
How could Adam and Steve's marriage possibly hurt anyone else?