Back in February, the Thomas More Law Center announced that it was filing suit to challenge the constitutionality of the recently enacted hate crimes legislation on the grounds that “the sole purpose of this law is to criminalize the Bible and use the threat of federal prosecutions and long jail sentences to silence Christians from expressing their Biblically-based religious belief that homosexual conduct is a sin.”
Of course, the fact that this is patently false as the legislation contains explicit free speech and religious liberty protections isn’t going to stop them from claiming that the law is an attempt to outlaw Christianity and protect pedophiles … which is exactly what Robert Muise of the Thomas More Law Center and Rick Green of Wallbuilders did yesterday while discussing the issue on Wallbuilders Live:
Muise: We’re in this [legal fight] for the long haul, and we need to be because those opponents of Christianity and the Christian view, they don’t give up so quickly. They’re continuing to press and fight as long and hard as they can to ensure that, you know, their really deviant sexual behavior is elevated to a special protected class as a matter of federal law and federal policy and they want to normalize it and want to silence Christians who oppose it. In fact, when you look at this, to even call it hate crimes legislation, they really want to equate the biblical teaching of homosexuality with racist speech, they want to really vilify it, demonize it, so it’s no longer a participant in the marketplace of ideas. I mean this is all part and parcle of really a grand plan.
Green: I have never heard a Christian minister say “go out and do violence against a homosexual,” so I don’t even understand where they get … if you get up and say “look, here’s the deal, the Bible says this is a sin, no different than adultery is a sin, all these other things, the Bible speaks against this” and if you say this, that somehow that is inciting violence. I don’t even get that connection.
Muise: You get the connection only because that’s the rhetoric they use to silence those who oppose them. When you look at the Bible, and the Bible’s words on homosexuality are quite harsh, as they are for other sinful conduct. Really, I don’t know of any other situation where we’ve elevated deviant sexual behavior and those who engage in it to a special protected class of persons as a matter of federal law and federal policy.
Green: And including pedophiles.
Of course, the great irony of this entire discussion is that if the right-wing claims about hate crimes legislation being designed to silence Christians who speak out against homosexuality were true, then both Green and Muise would immediately be arrested for the very things they just said.
But that won’t happen because their free speech and religious liberty rights have not been violated by the law, which undermines their central claim that hate crimes legislation is unconstitutional because it will silence Christians from speaking out.
In short, Green and Muise just spent a half-hour citing the Bible and railing against the “deviant sexual behavior” of gays, all while claiming that the existence of hate crimes legislation would result in anyone who cited the Bible or railed against gays being hauled off to jail .. and neither of them has been hauled off to jail.