Saturday, June 27, 2015

Same-Sex Marriage Won’t Bring Us Peace

For decades, a growing narrative from LGBT activists has convinced a great portion of the U.S. public that cultural peace would reign if social conservatives could just get with the times on marriage.
This narrative has recently gained new legs with rulings by federal judges that say marriage laws are based in animus against people with same-sex attractions. Likewise, states and localities regularly pass so-called “non-discrimination laws” that restrict freedom of speech, religion, property ownership, and more.
Despite today’s ruling, however, social conservatives should reject this flawed thinking—not just because of their love for people with same-sex attractions, or because of the Supreme Court’s abuse of the U.S. Constitution, but to protect the American values of free speech and religious liberty.
Indeed, a simple look at the last 10 years of same-sex “marriage” laws in Canada and other nations shows that rather than bring a new utopia to America, changing the legal definition of marriage would lead to further restrictions of religious liberty, undermine parental rights, and lead to worse formative years for children.

Repressing Free Speech and Religious Practice

In Canada, redefining marriage has led straight to the persecution of Christians. Just a decade ago, Canada made same-sex marriage legal, leading to fines for a Catholic-owned Knights of Columbus hall for refusing to host a homosexual wedding reception. Likewise, in 2005, Calgary Bishop Fred Henry was called before a Human Rights Tribunal for writing a public letter defending Catholic doctrine on marriage. The complaint was withdrawn, but the message was clear: Dissent is not tolerable under the new regime.
In America, religious freedom includes religious expression, but not so in Canada, it appears. A Catholic church at which two cohabiting homosexual men were altar servers came to the attention of the local bishop due to a letter signed by 12 parishioners.
When Bishop Nicola de Angelis went to the priest, citing Catholic doctrine, one of the servers launched a human-rights case. The case sought $25,000 from the bishop and $20,000 from each of the 12 parishioners who signed the letter. It was also dropped, but not until the bishop, like Henry, had spent considerable money in his legal defense.
Canada was one of the first nations to legally redefine marriage, but other nations are seeing similar consequences of trying to undermine what God has created. Mayors in France have been told they could not refuse to preside over same-sex ceremonies and a British marriage registrar was denied freedom for her religious beliefs, though just months earlier a demoted government employee’s right to criticize marriage redefinition was protected by courts. Of course, the same thing has already been happening in North Carolina, where civil magistrates whose consciences prevent them from performing gay marriage ceremonies must quit their job or face fines.

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