Southern Baptists Say Gay Rights Ain’t Civil Rights
Although they recently elected their first African-American president, a historic move calculated to erase a legacy of racism, Southern Baptists passed a resolution saying that gay rights don’t qualify as a civil rights issue.
Out of the many thousands attending the group’s annual meeting in New Orleans, Wednesday showed almost unanimous support for a resolution that keeps marriage as “the exclusive union of one man and one woman” and reaffirms that “all sexual behavior outside of marriage is sinful.” So even though the nation’s largest Protestant is making strides to appeal beyond its traditional base, they felt it was important to take a definitive stand on the issue of same-sex marriage, reports Daily News.
The resolution states that the Southern Baptist admit that homosexuals experience “unique struggles” but draw a distinction that as a whole, they lack “distinguishing features of classes entitled to special protections.” They say, “It is regrettable that homosexual rights activists and those who are promoting the recognition of ‘same-sex marriage’ have misappropriated the rhetoric of the Civil Rights Movement.”
It goes on to condemn the Obama administration’s mandate that requires religious institutions to provide contraceptive coverage to their employees, another hot-button issue in religious circles. Several Christian organizations have filed lawsuits against the mandate.
Reverend Dwight McKissic, the pastor of Cornerstone Baptist Church in Arlington, Texas, contributed to the resolution. He stated that “It’s important to sound the alarm again, because the culture is changing,” in an interview after the passing of the resolution. McKissic is African-American, and said gay rights being equated to civil rights is a misnomer, since there isn’t unanimous scientific support for the idea that homosexuality is a genetic trait rather than a choice. “They’re equating their sin with my skin,” he said.
Though the Southern Baptist Convention passed the ruling, they also reject “any form or gay-bashing, whether disrespectful attitudes, hateful rhetoric, or hate-incited actions,” according to MSNBC.
“If we stop appointing African Americans or Asians or Hispanics to leadership roles in this convention after my term is over, we failed. We absolutely failed,” said SBC president Reverend Fred Luter Jr.. Instead, he said, “This was a genuine, authentic move by this convention that says our doors are open, and the only way they can see that is not just putting up an African American president, but seeing other ethnic groups in other areas of this convention. Time will tell and I’ll be a cheerleader promoting that.”
Do you agree with the Southern Baptist Convention ruling or are they sorely mistaken in their argument?