Radical religious-right activist Mat Staver appeared on an episode of the “Liberty Pastors” program last week and urged administrators at Christian schools to implement policies denying children of same-sex couples the right to attend.
Preventing children of same-sex couples from attending Christian schools is vital, Staver explained, because it is important to prevent students from potentially having “personal experiences” with such families that might weaken their commitment to the “biblical doctrine” opposing marriage equality.
Staver is the chairman of Liberty Counsel, a religious-right legal group that advocates anti-LGBTQ discrimination under the guise of protecting religious liberty, and gained national notoriety in 2015 when he defended local Kentucky clerk Kim Davis, who refused to issue marriage licenses to gay couples in the wake of the Supreme Court’s landmark marriage equality decision. During his appearance on “Liberty Pastors,” Staver took a question from a viewer who runs a K-8 Christian school and was seeking advice about what sort of language they should include in the school policies that will protect their right to discriminate against same-sex couples who might wish to enroll their children.
Staver promised the viewer that he would provide “draft language” that they could use, explaining that Christian schools must be committed to maintaining a “proper Biblical environment” that “protects” students from encountering same-sex families.
“If I were running the school, I would not allow that student to come into the school that is from a same-sex household, and I would not allow a student to stay there,” Staver said. “You and I might be able to engage in this cultural war and battle and be biblically grounded, but these kids are not prepared for that. It is a real disservice to put these kids in the situation—particularly in a Christian school that ought to be a safe environment for them—where they can become very confused, and what they experience at that level can be life changing for the rest of their lives.”
“That’s like putting kids in a viper pit,” Staver declared. “They’re not ready for that. So, I would not do anything that jeopardizes the care and the responsibility that you have to protect those kids, with their parents, and put them in a proper biblical environment that is free of undue influences.”
Staver warned that “what often happens with Christians” is that they have “personal experiences” with those who live their life differently and that results in Christians changing their own understanding of “biblical doctrine.” As an example, Staver pointed to several Republicans who recently voted for the Respect for Marriage Act, which provides federal recognition of same-sex marriages.
“Among Christians, not being grounded in doctrine no matter how the winds blow, but being changed by personal experiences is a problem,” Staver complained. “That is the reason why this Respect for Marriage Act passed in the United States Senate. All of those people that voted for it, they were on record that they were in favor of marriage as a union of a man and woman. All of them. Why did they change? We know from some of their staffers, they changed because either someone in their family or people that they know, they found out are homosexual or in same-sex relationships. So, they couldn’t bring themselves to vote for the right thing. They knew what they were supposed to do, but they didn’t do it because of personal experiences.”
“So, be very cautious in protecting those children, and do what you need to do to protect them,” Staver stated.
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