President Obama signing two Executive Orders advancing homosexual and transgender “rights.” One adds “gender identity” to the existing federal nondiscrimination policy (joining “sexual orientation”). The other–addressed by Dr. Michael Brown below–compels federal contractors to abide by federal pro-LGBT nondiscrimination mandates. Obama declined to include a strong religious exemption in the latter Order. Photo: White House; click to enlarge.
The following is excerpted from an online appeal by pro-family author and advocate, Dr. Michael Brown to President Obama, in response to Obama signing an Executive Order designed to advance “gay rights”–and which is bereft of a strong religious exemptions as requested by a coalition of religious leaders. Dr. Brown–whose book A Queer Thing Happened to America is essential reading for those hoping to understand the far-reaching LGBT agenda–will be the keynote speaker at AFTAH’s banquet October 25th at Christian Liberty Academy in Arlington Heights, Illinois. This article first appeared in Charisma magazine.
President Obama, You Have Crossed a Dangerous, Unprecedented Line
President Barack Obama on Monday signed an executive order banning “discrimination” by federal contractors against LGBT people, allowing for no religious exemptions of any kind.
Dear Mr. President,
I write to you today as a concerned citizen of our great nation, standing as a witness against your historic actions on the morning of July 21, 2014, actions which I hope you will one day repudiate with deep remorse and regret.
I am referring, of course, to your signing an executive order Monday banning “discrimination” by federal contractors against LGBT people, allowing for no religious exemptions of any kind.
This was an outrageous act of discrimination against religion in the name of anti-discrimination—an act of bullying people of faith in the name of the prevention of bullying.
How can you, as a man who professes to be a person of faith and a follower of Jesus, throw religious Americans—in particular Christians—under the bus?
How can you attempt to force Christians, Jews, Muslims and others to violate fundamental aspects of their moral codes in order to appease a small but powerful special interest group, one that is not, in fact, suffering daily economic hardship by being fired from their jobs because of their sexual orientation or expression?
Have you forgotten entirely that our nation was founded on the concept of religious freedom?
Court’s defense of religious liberty for profit-making companies could help Christian small businessmen oppressed by “gay rights” laws
Current U.S. Supreme Court: left to right in back: Sotomayor, Breyer, Alito, Kagan. Front, left to right: Thomas, Scalia, Roberts, Kennedy, Ginsburg. Alito wrote the Hobby Lobby decision, and Kennedy is lionized by “gay” activists for writing last year’s decision striking down DOMA. Click to enlarge.
By Peter LaBarbera
It’s easy to understand why hard-core feminists with their frenzied, overblown “War on Women” rhetoric would be outraged by the Supreme Court upholding Hobby Lobby’s right as a Christian-run corporation not to be forced to provide abortifacients to its employees through an Obama-care mandate. (See Hillary’s misinformation on the decision HERE.) But why are liberal “gay” activists freaking out over the Hobby Lobby ruling?
The case was never about denying women birth control, but you wouldn’t know that from the “reporting” by liberal media and hyperventilating “progressive” bloggers. Hobby Lobby still provides 16 forms of birth control as a health benefit to its employees, but its founders—along with another Christian-owned corporation, Conestoga Wood Specialists—sued HHS over being forced to provide four contraceptive methods that could terminate a fertilized egg.
Hobby Lobby’s founders, David and Barbara Green, are committed Christians who believe that life begins at conception and should be protected. To quote the Court decision, “Hobby Lobby’s statement of purpose commits the Greens to ‘[h]onoring the Lord in all [they] do by operating the company in a manner consistent with Biblical principles.’” So strong is the Greens’ commitment to Jesus Christ that they have lost countless millions of dollars in profits over the years by closing their 500 craft stores nationwide on Sunday.
Now, one would think that obtaining cheap, subsidized contraception would be low on the priority list for homosexuals, seeing that two men or two women by themselves cannot produce a child. Nevertheless, Big Gay Inc is in a tizzy over the Supreme Court decision—because Burwell vs. Hobby Lobbyisn’t really about contraceptives but rather whether Americans like the Greens will be free to live out their religious convictions.
Immediately after the decision, feminists flew into a rage, circulating crude versions of Justice Ginsburg’s dissent and distortions about women being denied birth control by their “male bosses.” Too bad most Americans will never read the actual Hobby Lobby decision—which lays out two diametrically opposed, competing visions about freedom of conscience and the role of government in these United States.
Freedom of conscience vs. Big Government
Hobby Lobby’s owners, David and Barbara Green, seek to use their business to glorify Jesus Christ. Their 500 stores across the country are closed on Sundays, costing the Greens many millions of dollars in profits.
On the side of preserving and even expanding Americans’ religious liberty were five judges: Alito, Kennedy, Roberts, Scalia and Thomas. In his concurring opinion Kennedy writes:
“In our constitutional tradition, freedom means that all persons have the right to believe or strive to believe in a divine creator and a divine law. For those who choose this course, free exercise is essential in preserving their own dignity and in striving for a self-definition shaped by their religious precepts. Free exercise in this sense implicates more than just freedom of belief….It means, too, the right to express those beliefs and to establish one’s religious (or non-religious) self-definition in the political, civic, and economic life of our larger community.”
On the other side—of Big Government overriding citizens’ religious beliefs, restricting conscience exemptions to federal mandates, and putting federal power behind expanded access to entitlements–were Ginsburg, Sotomayor, Breyer and Kagan. In fact, Ginsburg spends nearly two pages in her dissent [see pp. 24-25] defending the idea that Obama-care’s provision of subsidies for IUD’s (intrauterine devices) –one of the four contraceptives resisted by Hobby Lobby as a potential abortifacient—is a “compelling government interest.”
As much as Ginsburg believes the majority’s “immoderate” reading of Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) is too broad, hers is too narrow: she ends by arguing that exemptions under the RFRA should be limited to explicitly religious organizations—leaving for-profit Christian businessmen like the Greens unprotected.
The bigger government gets–in both its “social justice” mission and the amount of goodies it gives out as “entitlements”—the greater the threat to Americans’ right to freely exercise their faith. This is precisely why homosexual activists are nervous about Hobby Lobby’s victory. If the nation’s highest court grants that even very large “closely held” family businesses like Hobby Lobby (which has more than 13,000 employees) possess a religious liberty claim under RFRA, then surely small family businesses like Elane Photography in New Mexico—owned by Jonathan and Elaine Huguenin—should have the right not to use their creative talents to serve homosexual “weddings,” which violate their Christian faith.
I just talked with our lawyer Michael Weber (part of Tom Schuck’s NSWB lawfirm). The trial date for Peter LaBarbera and I for witnessing at the University of Regina will be October 29, 2014. We were charged with Mischief after we set up abortion signs and one sign saying “Sodomy is a sin,” on the public walkway at the University of Regina back on April 14th. Approximately 20 or so pro-abortion and pro-homosexual protesters set up a counter protest across from us. Notwithstanding that I have two Court of Queen’s Bench decisions affirming my right to protest on public university campuses, Peter and I were arrested and charged and the pro-abortion/pro-homosexual protesters were allowed to continue with their demonstration unmolested.
No ray of sunshine, no warm ocean breeze rustling through the palm leaves can bring cheer to Isla Vista. A cloud of sorrow covers the picturesque college town and seeps though every fastened gate, through every locked and bolted door, and pierces every bewildered heart.
Nothing is more precious than the life of a young woman who eagerly awaits the joys of life. And no hurt exceeds the pain of a father or mother who sees a cap and gown replaced by a funeral shroud.
America should weep bitter tears over this. America must. Like the Prodigal Son who abandoned his father’s ample table to feed on the husks of swine, America has exchanged traditional views on marriage and the family for an unworkable code of sexual liberation. Under this dubious code, each man and woman becomes a law unto himself. If anyone doubts this, let him contemplate the words of the perpetrator. In his final message to society, Elliot Rodger declared himself to be beyond the commands and prohibitions of any law, human or divine.
Elliot Rodger’s understanding of human existence and sexual morality was gleaned at random from pop culture, lurid movies, and violent video games. Far from regarding women as a helpmate, life-long companion, and future mother of his children–which is the Christian view of marriage–Rodger saw women as a potential sexual conquest, a sort of prey.
In my 30-year battle for the family and marriage, insofar as God gave me the strength and wisdom to do so, I warned of the extreme danger which results from a wrong understanding of human sexuality. My warnings were rejected, both by society at large and by the pro-family movement, as alarmist, intolerant, and divisive.
Illinois HB 5569 proposes a ban on mental health providers offering counseling to minors with gender identification issues. Here is a video produced by Illinois Family Institute on HB 5569. Go HERE for the AFTAH Action-Alert piece on this freedom-destroying bill that denies self-determination for youth with unwanted homosexual attractions. TAKE ACTION: Illinois Residents:call your legislators (217-782-2000) and urge them to oppose HB 5569 (the so-called “Conversion Therapy Prohibition Act”)–which would deny healthy, pro-heterosexual change therapy to minors with unwanted same-sex desires. The bill, sponsored by lesbian St. Rep. Kelly Cassidy (D-Chicago), has passed out of committee and has been sent to the House floor. It is on the liberal fast-track so act now! Call Springfield at 217-782-2000. Find your state and federal legislators HERE.
On May 11, 2013, I spoke at a pro-family rally and posed the question, “Do you fear God or man?” on the issue of homosexual “marriage–which, of course, is not truly marriage in the eyes of our Creator. The rally was sponsored by Illinois Family Institute and was held outside of (Republican) State Rep. Jim Durkin’s district office in Western Springs, Illinois. At the time, Rep. Durkin was undecided on a pending homosexual “marriage” bill but he ended up voting “No.” The bill ultimately passed the Democrat-dominated Illinois General Assembly and was signed into law by Gov. Pat Quinn (D). It goes into effect June 1, although unnatural “gay marriages” are already allowed in Chicago and surrounding Cook County due to legal action. –Peter LaBarbera, AFTAH [Watch this on YouTube here: http://youtu.be/Y4t3bzYkc0c]
Victory shows the cultural battle over homosexuality-based “marriage” is far from over, says LaBarbera
THANK WORLD VISION! The American branch of WORLD VISION has listened to you and thousands of outraged Americans and reversed its sellout on “gay marriage.” TAKE ACTION: Call or write World Vision USA at 888-511-6548 [send an online message HERE] and THANK them for reversing their previously announced policy of recognizing employees’ unbiblical homosexual “marriages.” You can read AFTAH’s original press release on World Vision’s marriage sellout–which received wide coverage [e.g., see Charismanews.com]–HERE.
Dear AFTAH Readers,
Yesterday I brought you bad news; today I bring you great news: World Vision is reversing its unbiblical cave-in of recognizing employees’ (legal) homosexual “marriages”! YOUR CALLS, joined with thousands of others from across the USA, made the difference, as World Vision’s board recognized that it had made a gigantic mistake departing from Christian Truth. It is impossible to simultaneously honor Jesus Christ while recognizing and incentivizing sin and sexual perversion. Thank you to all who called WV to defend Truth! WORLD magazine reports:
World Vision reverses gay marriage decision
Board member says the organization never meant to undermine the authority of Scripture
By JAMIE DEAN, Posted March 26, 2014, 03:40 p.m.
UPDATE (5:05 p.m.): World Vision released a statement (see below) this afternoon confirming it has reversed its decision to allow its American branch to hire employees in same-sex marriages:
“The board acknowledged it made a mistake and chose to revert to our longstanding policy requiring sexual abstinence for all single employees and faithfulness within the Biblical covenant of marriage between one man and one woman. … We are brokenhearted over the pain and confusion we have caused many of our friends, who saw this decision as a reversal of our strong commitment to Biblical authority.”
We now wait to see what the new World Vision policy will be, and how they will handle the inevitable (media-magnified) outrage by LGBT activists. And I want to make clear that we are only commending World Vision’s return to biblical faithfulness on this issue.
MARRIAGE BATTLE FAR FROM OVER: I was just interviewed by SRN News (the national Christian-owned Salem Radio Network) and my message was this: the righteous turnaround at World Vision shows that Culture War over homosexuality and “gay marriage” is not nearly over. The media–who are sort of a huge PR firm for the ‘Gay’ Lobby–want you to give up. They keep telling Americans that legal homosexual “marriage” in all 50 states is “inevitable”–forget the more than 30 states that passed pro-natural marriage amendments or statewide referenda in support of genuine marriage (one-man, one-woman).
The Left-dominated opinion-molders and pro-”gay” pundits are wrong about marriage. (Besides, when have the media been RIGHT about anything important? Remember how they shilled for Obama?) The American people, and especially those who seek to honor God, do NOT want to treat two men or two women in a homosexual union as if it were a real marriage.
Thanks for not giving in to the Gay Thought Police and standing up for what’s right. The fight ahead is long and difficult, but we must be more committed to defending Truth than the homosexual activists are to pushing their lies. God bless you. – Peter LaBarbera, AFTAH
[TAKE ACTION: call or writer World Vision and thank them for recognizing their mistake [send an online message HERE]. You can read AFTAH’s original press release on World Vision’s marriage sellout–which received wide coverage (e.g., see Charismanews.com)–ONLINE HERE.]
UPDATE: World Vision Reverses Pro-Homosexual “Marriage” Policy!
As WORLD magazine reports, World Vision has listened to you and thousands of outraged Americans and reversed its sellout on “gay marriage.” TAKE ACTION: Call or write World Vision USA at 888-511-6548 [send them an online message HERE] and thank them for reversing their previously announced policy of recognizing employees’ unbiblical homosexual “marriages.”]
Denying a Sellout: World Vision took a major step away from historic Christianity by allowing employees in homosexual “marriages” to work for it. The organization’s president, Richard Stearns, then compounded the capitulation by telling Christianity Today that WV’s new policy is not a “an endorsement of same-sex marriage,” nor a “rejection of traditional marriage.”
Press Release, Americans For Truth About Homosexuality
TAKE ACTION: CONTACT World Vision at 888-511-6548 or online HERE
By Peter LaBarbera
CHICAGO—In a stunning capitulation to a powerful Sin Movement, World Vision’s American branch announced yesterday that it will now employ people who are in legal homosexual “marriages”—a distinctly anti-Biblical position for an organization that professes “Jesus is Lord” and “We desire him to be central in our individual and corporate life.”
The cultural cave-in by World Vision was made all the more remarkable by WV President Richard Stearns’ awkward attempts to justify and explain it—even denying that World Vision has caved on its Christian principles. WV had previously fought government attempts to force it and other Christian organizations to follow pro-homosexual mandates. Stearns told Christianity Today that the new policy was “not an endorsement of same-sex marriage. We have decided we are not going to get into that debate. Nor is this a rejection of traditional marriage, which we affirm and support.”
Stearns said, “Changing the employee conduct policy to allow someone in a same-sex marriage who is a professed believer in Jesus Christ to work for us makes our policy more consistent with our practice on other divisive issues,” he said. “It also allows us to treat all of our employees the same way: abstinence outside of marriage, and fidelity within marriage.”
Historically, people embracing sin are not regarded as faithful Christians. Homosexual conduct is clearly proscribed in the Bible as a sin (Romans 1:24-27) but one that can be overcome through Christ (1 Corinthians 6:9-11). Many former “gays” and “lesbians” like Anne Paulkhave overcome homosexuality through faith in Jesus.
Christ affirmed the Genesis account of marriage as the union of one man and one woman (Mark 10: 6-8). Only in liberal denominations widely regarded as having jettisoned biblical authority does one hear the bizarre concept of two people of the same sex honoring “fidelity within marriage.”
Yet Stearns said, “This is not us compromising. It is us deferring to the authority of churches and denominations on theological issues.” He denied that World Vision is headed down a “slippery slope.”
Americans For Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH) offers the following points about World Vision’s pro-homosexual-“marriage” sellout:
Stearns’ rationale for the policy change is stunningly dishonest and illogical in its double-speak. Stearns would be more forthright in declaring that World Vision has abandoned the Bible as authoritative and is denying “Jesus as Lord.” The same principle applies to individuals and organizations: one cannot embrace and sanctify sin while professing to honor Jesus Christ, who died and rose again so that believers might have victory OVER sin.
By recognizing homosexual “marriages” in its hiring practices and treating them like actual marriages, World Vision has not only entered the debate over this issue but greatly advanced the LGBT agenda by lending “Christian” credibility to “gay” activists’ misleading “marriage equality” propaganda. WV also undermines religious liberty by signaling that immoral laws that defy God’s law are more binding than Scripture—unilaterally throwing up the white flag of surrender on freedom of conscience.
World Vision’s sellout is part of a disturbing trend in evangelicalism to capitulate in the Culture War over homosexuality–while the pro-LGBT lobby only ramps up its advocacy of sexually immoral laws and corporate policies. The WV decision comes just days after Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy chose to censor himself by declaring that his public defense of natural marriage was a business “mistake.” Cathy vowed to stay out of the marriage debate, reportedly after listening to the counsel of friends—including homosexual activist Shane Windmeyer, whose organization, Campus Pride, advocates for homosexuality, bisexuality and transgenderism on college campuses.