LCA President and Barossa Valley Pastor Discriminated Against by the GAYS!

A post by Neil Hart on homosexuality, LGBT, lesbian and gay stuff and the Lutheran Church of Australia.

As you may remember, reader, the President of the Lutheran Church of Australia has made a submission to the Federal Parliament in opposition to the Marriage Equality. You can read my full critique of his submission here. There are a couple of aspects of his submission that need extra attention. I was reminded of these when I read the submission from Pastor Wally Schiller and the Light Pass Lutheran Church. Their submission is here. (Scroll down to 167). More about them later.

The President said…

…the equation of same sex partnership with marriage could even be seen to be a type of reverse discrimination. against those who are currently married as husband and wife.

What an interesting term…“reverse discrimination” I’d never heard it before. I really had to stop and think it through.

Discrimination is the unjust, prejudicial treatment of a category of people on the grounds of their religion, sexuality, ethnicity, because they are disabled or any other arbitrary reason. We discriminate against our LGBT brothers and sisters when, because of their difference, we withhold from them their fundamental human rights.

Have a look at the opening statements of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Article 1.

  1. All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.

Article 2.

  1. Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind.

The fact that our present discriminatory marriage laws deny the fundamental human rights of the LGBT community is well argued in many of the submissions to government.

Take for example Amnesty International. They are a organisation that exists for no other reason than to ensure that the Declaration of Human Rights is honoured throughout the world so that people’s rights aren’t violated. They have written urging their strong support of the marriage equality. (Submission no. 58)

The Australian Human Rights Commission give their complete support and encouragement for marriage equality and an “end to this discrimination” (no. 116).

The Australian Lawyers for Human Rights “strongly” support the bill (137)

The Human Rights Law Centre emphasises the need to achieve marriage equality “for all people in Australia”. (161)

The University of Adelaide Law Faculty’s lengthy and detailed submission  voices not only their support for the amendments but expresses the opinion that denial of marriage equality is inconsistent with fundamental principles of Australian and constitutional law. (151)

Lawyers and Academics from the Deakin University School of Law declared the passing of the bills “fundamental to a free and democratic society”.

But, we don’t really need to read all these submissions do we? Its kinda self evident isn’t it?

Ok…its pretty clear that withholding the fundamental right to marry from people purely because of their sexual orientation is discrimination. So, what is “reverse discrimination”? Well, since the President didn’t offer a definition, I will attempt one of my own.

The setting for reverse discrimination is when the heterosexual majority who enjoy the full benefits of the institution of marriage, exercise their considerable democratic power to interfere in the lives of the LGBT minority to prevent them from having those same rights and benefits. Reverse discrimination then occurs when this marginalised and discriminated against group have the audacity to COMPLAIN! Clearly…thats discrimination. Or reverse discrimination. or double discrimination with a half twist. Something like that.

I have to ask the President. Really? Do you really feel discriminated against by the gay community who simply seek a fundamental human right unjustly and illogically denied to them.

Pastor Wally Schiller and the Lights Pass Lutheran Church certainly feel hurt by the whole thing. In their submission the Pastor writes….

 I also note with sadness the constant accusations made against those who do not support same-sex relationships being considered as marriage. Not a day goes by when there is not an accusation of hate, injustice, homophobia etc., purely because we believe a certain standard to be beyond change.

Reader, I know! My heart breaks as well. Can you imagine how hard done by and abused you would feel if you were discriminating against someone and restricting their human rights and THEY called you names! Man! That really hurts! I’m glad that they put that in their submission. I’m sure that the hearts of the members of the senate committee who will read  their submission will go out to them as well.

Do you remember the time, Reader, when you went out to the backyard earlier than your brothers and sisters on easter morning and collected ALL the easter eggs for yourself? (Well done! Clever you!) And then they all called you “selfish” and “greedy” and you ran to mum and dad and told on them for calling you bad names! Who did they think they were calling YOU names.

Coincidently, reader, I have seen a couple of things this week that follow the same strange logic as the President and the Pastor. They made me laugh out loud. I’m sure you will enjoy them too.

First there is Jesus and Mo.   (Check these guys out. They are brilliant)

And then there was this :-))) Steve KIng is a potential vice-president for the US Republican ticket.

Pastor Wally and the Light Pass Congregation’s submission touches on all manner of important things other than their hurt feelings. They have some astute and well documented historical observations about the dangers of same sex marriage.

“Society will suffer – a fact borne out by history many centuries ago at the times when moral decline has been in full swing.”

Ahhh yes. “many centuries ago”. I remember reading about that…somewhere…once…I think…when the “moral decline has been in full swing”. Heaven forbid.. we wouldn’t want to go fully swinging into moral decline like they did “many centuries ago”. Man, How could I have forgotten THAT. Thanks for the reminder Pastor Wally.

I have browsed through a good number of the submissions to date. Many have presented spurious arguments in favour of the proposal.

Ahh Amnesty International and all those university law professors with their “spurious” arguments and their legal mumbo -jumbo. I bet they have forgotten about the “full swing moral decay” from “many centuries ago” as well.

I also note that there is so much evidence that the homosexual community is giving very little support to this proposal and that its large support comes from a minority and a group of vocal supporters outside of their ranks. That is significant and cannot be ignored.

See! Those law professors really ought to sit up and jolly well take notice of people like Wally and the LIghts Pass Congregation.  They are able to perform the amazing feat of producing “so much evidence” of the ABSENCE of something. And all these years the lawyers have been working on the assumption that evidence needs to be OF something. Ha! Silly lawyers and their legal mumbo-jumbo.

There is one final thing that I wanted to highlight from these 2 submissions. The President says…

The legislation would violate the separation between church and state by imposing a definition of marriage on the church that contradicts the teaching of the church on sexuality and marriage. The state would thereby make a decision on what is, for many of its citizens a religious matter. the separation between church and state means that, just as the church does not impose its theological teachings on the state, the state does not impose its ideology on the church.

Perhaps try reading that a few times,,,let it sink in…”The state should not impose its ideology on the church because the church does not impose its theology on the state.”

Really? Since when has the church NOT attempted to impose its theology on the state. I wonder what the Lutheran Church’s District Presidents were doing when they joined together with 50 or so other heads of churches to write their 2011 combined letter to the government opposing gay marriage. I guess they were all expressing their purely secular ideologies in a particularly ecclesiastical manner.

“The church does not impose its theology on the state.”

Hmmm. Have another look at Pastor Wally’s submission.

 I believe in the sanctity of marriage as the institution provided by God for one man and one woman to be in relationship to each other for life. This relationship is in place for the primary purpose of pro-creation and the provision of the best possible environment for bringing up children …Changing the marriage act will devalue this special procreative relationship provided by God at creation.

Woops. the President and the Pastor forgot to get their stories straight…(Pssst…Wally…WALLY!…Didnt you get the Memo? This is supposed to be separation of church and state stuff . ….The President is  trying to convince them that they are imposing THEIR ideology on US. If you mention GOD then they will be reminded that this whole thing is actually about our RELIGIOUS views.)

Sadly, among (the supporters of the Bills)  also Christians, who, it appears, have resigned themselves to either ignoring or reinterpreting the very foundation of the Christian faith, the Bible, where the issue of same-sex relationship is never condoned or endorsed in any shape or form, but rather expressly forbidden.

(Pssst Wally! The Memo! Remember the Memo!  Sigh…)

The thing is, Reader, of the two submissions, Wally and the Light Pass Church are the ones who are calling a spade a spade a spade, or a gay  a gay, and a sin a sin. I don’t agree with them but  at least they are true to their convictions. They are convinced that homosexuality is sin and that those who engage in homosexual activities are deserving of God’s judgement. And THAT is the basis on which they make their submission.

OK Church! Time for some serious talk.

Why don’t we  give up the pretence of a secular argument (it really wasnt working anyway!) and just “come out”. First, we need to acknowledge that the argument is entirely religious. Then we can give up on questionable government submissions and express our beliefs more fully and honestly in a different forum. If we really do believe that the LGBT people in our community are engaged in sinful activity that has eternal consequences then perhaps they should be warned. Perhaps we should just get out our  placards and wave then in the highways and byways… “Homosexuality is evil”… “practicing homosexuals burn in hell”

Then, just one more step. We should change our name to Westborough Baptist. Maybe, in a way,  we always were the Westborough Baptist Church. Maybe its time to take off the “caring loving christian” overcoat and the “reasonable human being” shirt and pants and the “I really feel for the plight of the homosexuals in our church” underwear and expose your real selves to the world. Coz those clothes are really starting to look…awkward… on us anyway.