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South Carolina Christian College Bans Homosexuality After Two Athletes Courageously Come Out

Juan Varona Erskine College

Erskine College, South Carolina has banned homosexuality after volleyball players Drew Davis and Juan Varona (above) came out last year.

OutSports reports that although Davis and Varona found support from their teammates, a statement from the college is likely to drive “a no-gays policy at the school and create an atmosphere where LGBT people do not feel safe.”

The February 20th “Statement on Human Sexuality” reads in part:

Erskine“We believe the Bible teaches that all sexual activity outside the covenant of marriage is sinful and therefore ultimately destructive to the parties involved. As a Christian academic community, and in light of our institutional mission, members of the Erskine community are expected to follow the teachings of scripture concerning matters of human sexuality and institutional decisions will be made in light of this position.”

Varona told OutSports that the statement “makes me disappointed because I have never received anything but kind treatment from everyone at this school, and my sexual orientation is no secret.”

He added:

"I feel that in the time that we are living right now, where even in the conservative state of South Carolina same-sex marriage is legal, the school took several steps back instead of progressing towards a future where everyone can be treated as an equal, which is a future most of the country is moving towards.

"I understand the religious stand on adultery, which is part of the Ten Commandments in the Bible, and that would apply to heterosexual and homosexual people. But when I saw the mention of sexual orientation being an issue, it just made me sad and worried for other gay people who might be struggling with confidence to come out."


Mike Bowers, Man Who Defended Sodomy Bans, Says He Is A Changed Man on LGBT Rights: VIDEO

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Mike Bowers, the former Georgia Attorney General who defended the state’s sodomy ban, has spoken to Buzzfeed about how his opinions on gay rights have evolved over the last 30 years.

Bowers, who in 1986 successfully petitioned the Supreme Court to allow state bans on “homosexual sodomy,” earlier this week announced his opposition to “deeply troubling” pending religious liberty legislation in the state.

According to Bowers, the timing of the proposed legislation is suspect as it comes in the wake of the many recent marriage equality decisions. Moreover, the state proposals provide for broader exemptions than federal protections, so that “any time a person wished to refuse to act in response to a government requirement, he or she could assert the protection of the proposed [Religious Freedom Restoration Act on which the proposals are based].”

Bowers was asked by LGBT group Georgia Equality to assess the bill.  Once he’d read it, he decided it needed to be killed because it would allow people “to use religion as an excuse for his or her interpretation of the law and to get out from under this, that, or the other law.”

On the issue of same-sex marriage, he said:

“I want people to be left alone.

“I genuinely believe that everybody, all people, need someone to love and be loved by. I truly believe that.”

Watch a 2012 interview with Bowers reflecting on his time in Georgia politics, AFTER THE JUMP..

Continue reading "Mike Bowers, Man Who Defended Sodomy Bans, Says He Is A Changed Man on LGBT Rights: VIDEO" »


NC Senate Approves Bill Allowing State Officials to Discriminate Against Gay Couples on Religious Grounds

The North Carolina Senate voted 32-16 on Wednesday to approve a bill allowing courthouse officials to recuse themselves from marrying gay couples if they have religious objections to doing so, the Fayetteville Observer reports:

Flag_ncThe legislation stems from federal court decisions this past fall that legalized gay marriage in North Carolina. Some magistrates, who officiate civil marriage ceremonies, and assistant registers of deeds, who issue marriage licenses, for religious reasons did not want to perform these services for gay couples. They were told that their oath to uphold the U.S. constitution requires them to do so anyway.

Most Republicans voted for the bill; most Democrats voted against it. Supporters said the bill say it protects the employees' First Amendment freedom of religion rights. Critics said would codify discrimination into state law.

Seven or eight of the state's magistrates have left their positions as a result of having to perform gay marriages, according to statements made during senate debate. The new law would allow them to return to office without losing their benefits.

Other points in the bill are a requirement of the court system to ensure magistrates are on hand at least 10 hours a week, that all couples seeking lawful marriage can have one, and that if local magistrates don't want to perform a gay couple's marriage the state would send one to perform the duty.

NC paper News & Observer is not pleased with it:

Sworn public officials have to do their duty, and this not-so-clever bit of legislating is certain to be found unconstitutional. Magistrates and registers of deeds don't get to cop out of their jobs based on their personal beliefs.

This is amateur hour at the General Assembly, and a petty action that could get expensive. The legislature already has spent nearly $100,000 to have outside lawyers appeal the federal rulings on same-sex marriage. State Attorney General Roy Cooper, a Democrat, wisely decided not to press on with appeals once the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the issue.

The bill now heads to the House.


Christian Publisher Cancels Book Deal After Evangelical Author Comes Out: VIDEO

Destiny Image, a book publishing company that claims its mission is to make "authors easily accessible to the Christian body around the world," has canceled a book deal with one of its writers after the young author's recent coming out. 22-year-old evangelical Christian Brandan Robertson had signed the book deal with Destiny Image last spring. Last month, he came out as a queer in a Time magazine article.

RobertsonIn a new Time piece published this week, he reveals that the publisher notified him on February 19 of their decision to terminate his forthcoming book about faithNomad: Not-So-Religious Thoughts On Faith, Doubt, and the Journey In Between.

According to the article, Robertson claims that Destiny Image had asked him if he would agree with the publisher's official statement on homosexuality, something he refused to do. That statement reads in part:

“Destiny Image accepts the Holy Scriptures as the infallible word of God and answers all questions concerning life and godliness. We do not condone, encourage, or accept the homosexual lifestyle. Destiny Image renounces this lifestyle as ungodly and completely contrary to the Kingdom of God.”

A rep for the company refused to address Robertson's sexuality and explained that their reason for canceling the book deal was a financial one: "There is much consideration for every book, every author, but the final determination is financial viability."

Since at least last year, Robertson has written about various gay issues, including marriage equality, on his evangelical blog Revangelical.

Watch an interview from 2014 where Robertson has a LGBT faith discussion with author and pastor Rob Bell (who was featured on Oprah's Soul Food Sunday last week talking about his support for gay marriageAFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Christian Publisher Cancels Book Deal After Evangelical Author Comes Out: VIDEO" »


Gordon Klingenschmitt: Homophobic Bakers are 'Blessing' Gay Couples for Refusing to 'Participate in Sodomy' - VIDEO

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Demon-obsessed homophobe, religious zealot and Colorado House of Representatives embarrassment Gordon Klingenschmitt has said the bakery owners in Oregon who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple are “a blessing” to gay people because they refuse “to participate in their acts of sodomy."

Speaking on his unhinged “Pray In Jesus Name” show, Klingenschmitt started with the conspiracy theories, arguing that the government is out to bankrupt Christian business owners.

He continued that bakery owners Aaron and Melissa Klein "are being persecuted for righteousness sake" because they “are not going to endorse” a sin that is “harmful to you in the homosexual community.”

Watch via Right Wing Watch as Klingenschmitt prays for your damned soul, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gordon Klingenschmitt: Homophobic Bakers are 'Blessing' Gay Couples for Refusing to 'Participate in Sodomy' - VIDEO" »


Pat Robertson: Catering For Same-Sex Weddings Like Servicing Man-Dog Weddings - VIDEO

Robertson

Bats--t televangelist Pat Robertson has said that businesses catering for same-sex weddings might as well be providing their services for man-dog weddings, reports Right Wing Watch.

Speaking on his increasingly bonkers The 700 Club about yesterday's ruling that florist Barronelle Stuzman violated Washington's anti-discrimination law by refusing to service a same-sex wedding, Robertson argued that if “somebody wanted to marry his dog” the florist has now “got to have flowers for that.”

“This is crazy,” Robertson claimed.  Yes it is, Pat. Yes it is.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Not known for his strong grasp on reality, Pat recently said that gay people will die out "because they can't reproduce."

Continue reading "Pat Robertson: Catering For Same-Sex Weddings Like Servicing Man-Dog Weddings - VIDEO" »


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