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Pennsylvania Gov. Mark Schweiker yesterday signed legislation that gives homosexuals statewide legal protection from verbal harassment and hate crimes â€” a move that critics argue targets church leaders who preach against the homosexual lifestyle.
Critics said that they fear the law could be enforced too liberally to include pastors, preachers and other church leaders who during their sermons often quote passages from the Bible that denounce homosexuality. As a result, the law would then violate the church leaders' free speech rights and religious liberties.
"Those especially at risk are conservative religious people who may very well find themselves hauled into court unless they keep their mouths shut for being politically incorrect," said Laurel Lynn Petolicchio, a constitutional activist from Columbia, Pa.
"This legislation basically sets up for a lawsuit against any minister or religious...
What is unclear in this article is how gays are actually protected better under this law than they were previously by laws prohibiting assault and harassment. The main answer, IMO, is that it is intended to act as somewhat of a speech code.
(sorry, that's the history of laws like this, and I don't expect this one to be any different)
Shane, I believe when you accuse members of this forum of "hate," you are confusing disagreement on issues with disdain for people. It is a variant of the ad hominem (attack the person) fallacy which is all too common in our society today.
If you want evidence that homosexuality is wrong, take a look at sermons on this website, read BH's posts, and then visit www.family.org to find peer-reviewed studies of homosexuality.
You'll find, if you devote a few hours and follow the links, that it's not a pretty picture. That's why I and others oppose it.
Shane, in order to get a good answer to your comments, you're probably going to have to do a better job of explaining yourself.
For instance, what have you read that makes you think that Christians "hate" homosexual people?
In your mind, if I were to say to someone, "I think you're wrong about Topic A," does that mean that I hate them? Am I allowed to think that certain actions are wrong without having to hate anybody?
Secondly, you said that you haven't "found much reliability" to the view that homosexuality is wrong. This is a very vague statement. What "reliability" have you found in the view that homosexuality is a good thing?
Unlike many people today, Christians believe that some things are objectively bad. I'm guessing that many of your teachers and people you respect do not think this way.
In fact, Shane, Christians do not hate gay people, generally. (I can't speak for everybody...) It is just that we are convinced that homosexuality is a demoralizing and destructive lifestyle, in regard to the individuals concerned and the larger society. However, we believe that all persons (gay or straight) stand in need of the salvation and redemption that is only found in Jesus Christ.
Many, just like yourself, see our condemnation of the lifestyle as hating the person. You cannot be any further from the truth. We are to have a love and burden for their eternal souls and a desire to see them delivered from this perversion. God doesnâ€™t condone sin in any fashion, that is why He sent us a deliverer to set those captives free.
(Romans 1:24-26)  Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:  Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.  For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:  And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was meet.  And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
As you can see, the Word of God clearly condemns this type of behavior, but God has the power to deliver them out of their wickedness. However, we as Christians are commanded to preach the word of God out of a loving and compassionate heart because we donâ€™t want to see them spend eternity in the lake of fire.
Second, do you believe in the authority of God's Word?
Thirdly, are you willing to accpet what the Word of God says over the politically correct views of modern culture?
God's Word clearly condemns the sin of homosexuality, as he does adultery, fornication, incest as well as many others.
(Leviticus 18:22-26)  Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.  Neither shalt thou lie with any beast to defile thyself therewith: neither shall any woman stand before a beast to lie down thereto: it is confusion.  Defile not ye yourselves in any of these things: for in all these the nations are defiled which I cast out before you:  And the land is defiled: therefore I do visit the iniquity thereof upon it, and the land itself vomiteth out her inhabitants.  Ye shall therefore keep my statutes and my judgments, and shall not commit any of these abominations; neither any of your own nation, nor any stranger that sojourneth among you:
Wow I can't beleive how many people out there hate and demoralize others just on their life style. I'm 17 and doing a report on homosexuality and I just so happen to come across this site. So far I haven't found much reliablity to anyones claims that homosexuality is wrong. Why do you hate them so much? I would like a reply and if any of you can send me to a relable site that supports your position please tell. Thank you for you cooroporation, and for standing my bad spelling skills ^.^
As one whom God was pleased to deliver from the bondage of homosexuality I can say, first hand, that those who practice or even support this lifestyle, in any form, will do better to listen to the minister of the gospel who speaks against this abomination in the name of the Lord than to attempt to supress it with legislation!
This law won't muzzle preachers. If you want to muzzle preachers, then threaten to take away 501.3.c tax exemption if they preach against homosexuality. Preachers already are so frightened by this threat that stay clear of anything that might sound like political endorsement. Go for their pocketbooks and 90% of our pastors will graciously comply. And, truly, the reason the gays have gotten what they have so far is that the pastors have muzzled themselves voluntarily over the past two decades. Would to God that we would have another Parson's Uprising in this land.