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'Jail grandma' hate speech debate begins
Posted By Bob Unruh On 04/17/2007 @ 1:00 am In Front Page | Comments Disabled
Debate is to begin today in a congressional subcommittee on a federal “hate speech” proposal similar to a state law that already has been used to send grandmothers to jail for their “crime” of sharing the Gospel of Jesus on a Philadelphia public sidewalk.
The proposal, on its face, purports to create bans on “hate crimes,” but Rev. Louis Sheldon of the Traditional Values Coalition said it more accurately is “an attempt by the ultra liberals and the homosexuals to force Americans to accept homosexuality and gender disturbance as equal to God’s Created Order of heterosexuality.”
“This bill says that hordes of homosexuals are being forced to flee their home states because they are routinely denied access to goods, services and employment,” he said. “This explains the mystery of the crowded highways and airports in San Francisco and New York. … The reasons for the bill are completely unsupported.”
He said states already have the resources to deal with crimes of bodily harm or assault, and the plan is simply not needed. Worse yet, he said, it creates a crime of “thought.”
Sheldon’s organization is releasing a poster showing Jesus as a wanted fugitive, for “crimes” under the planned “hate crimes” legislation.
Folger said her organization is launching a national television campaign to fight so-called “hate crimes” legislation, starting with H.R. 1592, the pending plan.
“The ‘Hate Crimes’ bill is better named ‘Hate Grandma’ or “hate Free Speech’ bill as it poses a serious threat to the freedom of speech for every American,” Folger said. “We must stop it before they send your grandma, your pastor, or you to jail for sharing your faith or speaking the truth about an agenda that seeks to silence us.”
The television ad campaign by Faith2Action will feature Philadelphia grandmothers who already were thrown in jail in Pennsylvania under that state’s “hate crimes” law – and faced the possibility of 47 years in jail – for testifying in public about their Christian faith.
That ads can be viewed at StopHateCrimesNow.com.
Sheldon noted that the plan adds “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” – “perceived or actual” for special federal protection under the Commerce Clause. The plan already is on the fast track and could be up for a subcommittee vote as early as tomorrow. It will be before the full Judiciary Committee next week.
The National Prayer Network, led by Rev. Ted Pike, is promoting a campaign aimed at defeating “hate crimes” proposals
The proposal, by U.S. Rep. John Conyers, the head of the House Judiciary Committee, is called “The Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2007,” and the Rev. Ted Pike, of the National Prayer Network said it is horrible.
Michael Marcavage, director of Repent America joined Pike in expressing alarm over the plan.
Marcavage told WND that plan would invert American justice, and instead of requiring evidence it would leave it to someone who claims to be offended to determine whether a “crime” has been committed.
“Truth is not allowed as evidence in hate crimes trials. … A homosexual can claim emotional damage from hearing Scripture that describes his lifestyle as an abomination. He can press charges against the pastor or broadcaster who merely reads the Bible in public. The ‘hater’ can be fined thousands of dollars and even imprisoned!” Marcavage said.
As WND has reported, such laws already have been used around the world, where in Canada pastors are fearful of reading biblical injunctions against homosexuality, and in Australia where two pastors were convicted of “vilifying” Islam.
Peter LaBarbera, of Americans for Truth, noted that in Canada and France both, legislators have been fined for publicly criticizing homosexuality. Three years ago, a Swedish hate crimes law was used to put Pastor Ake Green, who preached that homosexuality is a sin, in jail for a month.
“And recently, a British couple told how they were denied the chance to adopt because it was determined that their Christian faith might ‘prejudice’ them against a homosexual child put in their care,” LaBarbera added.
Already in the United States, Catholic Charities of Boston halted all adoption operations in the state after being told under Massachusetts’ pro-’gay’ nondiscrimination law, only agencies that placed children in homosexual-led households would get licensed by the state.
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