Monday, April 20, 2009

Hate Crime Laws- Protecting Christians since 1969

homophobia, homosexual, hate crimes, religion, sexual orientation, christian, christianity, traditional, values,
I was waiting for the next hysterical "Oh, noes, if the new hate crime legislation passes, your pastor will arrested for saying 'Jesus'! We have to do something!" post I saw to bring this up.

Thankfully, Yours, Sincerely did me a solid.

An impending "hate crimes" bill is coming up for vote which directly opposes both freedom of speech, and freedom of religion:

Andrea Lafferty, executive director of the
Traditional Values Coalition, says the bill is a serious threat to religious freedom. "Your pastor could be prosecuted for conspiracy to commit a hate crime if it passes and become law," she warns. "This so-called 'hate crimes' bill will be used to lay the legal foundation and framework to investigate, prosecute, and persecute pastors, business owners, Bible teachers, Sunday School teachers, youth pastors -- you name it -- or anyone else whose actions are based upon and reflect the truth found in the Bible."

TVC says H.R. 1913 broadly defines "intimidation" -- and offers up this example: "A pastor's sermon could be considered 'hate speech' under this legislation if heard by an individual who then acts aggressively against persons based on 'sexual orientation.'" Under those circumstances, says the group, the pastor could be prosecuted for "conspiracy to commit a hate crime."

Wow! That's terrible, isn't it?

No, what's really terrible is Christians have been protected by federal hate crimes legislation since 1969. What's really terrible is, after enjoying this protection for 40 years, Christians want to make absolutely certain the LGBT community does not enjoy the same protection by protesting against adding sexual orientation to the existing federal hate crimes legislation.

Nice. Really nice.

Keep in mind, hate crimes legislation is limited to violent actions:

H.R. 1913 – "To provide Federal assistance to States, local jurisdictions, and Indian tribes to prosecute hate crimes, and for other purposes".

Furthermore, it contains the following:

"Nothing in this Act, or the amendments made by this Act, shall be construed to prohibit any expressive conduct protected from legal prohibition by, or any activities protected by the free speech or free exercise clauses of, the First Amendment to the Constitution."

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