Gay Marriage, Civil Partnership Laws Used to Attack Religious Freedom

Gay marriage proponents use the argument that no one will be forced to abandon their faith if same-sex marriage becomes the law.

However, in actual practice, religious institutions have been forced to shut down and individuals have lost their jobs all around the world when gay marriage has become the law.

Civil partnerships, which basically give the rights of gay marriage, but call it something else, have had the same effect.

Catholic Charities in Illinois and the District of Columbia have been forced to close their adoption agencies because of these changes in the law. Catholic Charities in Massachusetts was forced to close it adoption program because of anti-discrimination laws.

Catholic schools in Canada have been attacked over gay marriage, and in the UK people have been fired for refusing to participate in civil partnerships.

Now, Colorado is looking at a change in their law which would have similar results.

 

I have added emphasis by using bold type to the CNA article describing this. It reads in part:

Denver, Colo., Jan 18, 2013 / 12:02 am (CNA).- A new version of a proposed Colorado civil unions bill has dropped provisions that protect agencies from being forced to place children with same-sex and unmarried opposite-sex couples – a change that could put at risk Catholic Charities’ adoption and foster care services in the state.

Jennifer Kraska, executive director of the Colorado Catholic Conference, told CNA Jan. 16 that there have been “significant” changes to the bill from last year’s version, which failed to pass.

If the legislation passes this year, civil unions for two people of any sex would be legally equivalent to marriage under state law. The 2012 Colorado Senate bill proposing to create the unions had stated that the bill “shall not be interpreted to require a child placement agency to place a child for adoption” with a couple in a civil union.

That language, however, is absent from the 2013 bill, S.B. 11.

Kraska said this change means the legislation has the potential for “serious conflict with religious liberty” regarding religious institutions involved in charitable services as well as adoption and foster care.

Mark Rohlena, President and CEO of Catholic Charities of Central Colorado, said if the bill passes it could threaten the religious liberty of agencies like his that decline to place children with same-sex couples or unmarried opposite-sex couples.

“We feel it would be a very sad commentary if Colorado forced religious institutions or those who believe in a different framework to do something against their conscience,” he told CNA Jan. 16.

If Colorado law forces the Colorado Springs-based agency to violate Catholic teaching, he said, “we probably would cease the operation of our adoption programs.”

“That risk is always there,” he said. “I think that we would try to explore every avenue available to us to provide this vital service to the community.”

He said a shutdown is “very well what could happen” given precedents in other states.

When Illinois passed a civil unions bill in 2010, its backers promised that religious freedom would not be affected. However, the next year state officials used the law to end Catholic Charities agencies’ $30 million in state contracts for its work in caring for about 2,000 foster children each year. The state ruled that the agencies were discriminatory against unmarried couples and homosexual couples.

In 2010, a “gay marriage” law in the District of Columbia forced Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington to end its foster care and public adoption program because the law required it to serve homosexual couples.

Massachusetts’ anti-discrimination law forced Catholic Charities of Boston to end its adoption program, one of the oldest in the country. (Read more here.)

  • Bill S

    It’s pretty clear. You can’t judge and discriminate against people just because they don’t appear to have equal rights according to your prejudices even if those prejudices are being imposed upon you by your religion. Call it persecution if it makes you feel like a martyr but those are the rules especially if you are receiving government funds. That was the case in Massachusetts and the Archbishop made them give up the program rather than obey the rules.

    • http://www.rosariesforlife.com Dave

      Bill, come on. Whatever you might think about homosexual relations in general, it’s not a prejudice to think that children are better off with a mother and a father. We’re talking about children here. You can’t mess with children’s lives in the name of equal rights. How far is society willing to go with this fantasy?

    • Lindsey

      What about the child? there are children who have problem with foster parents and now you are forcing children to accept something they do not understand and will be confuse when they are pick on in school and other places. THIS IS A SELFISH ACT OF SATAN TO DESTOY FAMILIES BECAUSE THOSE WHO DESIRE SAMESEX MARRIAGE CAN NOT PRODUCE. IT TOOK A MAN AND A WOMAN TO PRODUCE ACHILD, SO WHY FORCE THAT CHILD TO BE A PART OF SOMETHING THEY MIGH NOT AGREE WITH LATR IN THEIR LIFE?

  • FW Ken

    At least BillS admits what a lot of gay advocates deny: the well-being of children is subordinate to the purported rights of persons with same-sex attractions.

    Hey, as long as the rules are obeyed!

  • Bill S

    ” it’s not a prejudice to think that children are better off with a mother and a father.”

    Actually, it is. Have you done any research to verify that same-sex couples are not qualified to raise children? I’ve read articles that indicate that they are.

    • Dave

      Oh, well, you’ve read an article. OK then. I read an article that says that aliens recommend beekeeping. Isn’t that interesting?

      You can selectively use statistics to prove pretty much anything you want.

  • JeffreyRO5

    It’s probably best that Catholics get out of businesses that deal with children anyway, given the pedophile issue. It’s too much risk for children to let Catholics work with them.

    • Dave

      Troll? Bigot? Both? Hard to know.

  • FW Ken

    Jeffrey, more kids are molested in New York Public Schools annually than among Catholics (clergy, at least) for the post 50 years.

    Perhaps public schools should get out of the business of working with kids.

  • Peg

    I wonder what has happened to all the children that Catholic Charities was serving? Do we know the cost of pulling help away from the neediest. Perhaps if we focus more on the children in these situations and their needs people will be able to rise above self interest.

  • Mike

    Catholic Charities of Boston was not forced to end its adoption program. It chose to end it. Or, more accurately, Archbishop O’Malley forced it to end the program. The 42 member board of Catholic Charities voted unanimously to continue placing adoptions with qualified gay couples. Seven members of the board resigned in protest over the unilateral decision by the archbishop. In my opinion, this was mostly a political decision. It coincided with an important vote in the state legislature about a gay marriage referendum.

    CCB had placed 13 children with gay couple in the 17 years that the anti-discrimination law was in place and the CCB was still providing adoption services. In those 17 years they placed a total of 710 children.

    Dave, CCB also placed children in single parent homes thereby depriving them of both a mother and a father. The Catholic Church did not find this objectionable. So your point is not relevant. The archbishop to not force CCB to stop placing children with gay couple because they did not provide both a mother and a father, he objected to the placements because they were gay. That was the objectionable characteristic. Nothing else.

    Catholic Charities of Boston was working as a contractor for the state. The state contracted them to do the adoption work. The state paid the bills. It was not charity work funded by donations from the church. It was contract work funded by the state.

    Peg, the adoption work was contracted out to other agencies. It’s too bad. Catholic Charities had a good reputation. It’s a shame that dogma trumps all else.

    • Dave

      “The 42 member board of Catholic Charities voted unanimously to continue placing adoptions with qualified gay couples.”

      Sounds like they need a new board, or Catholic Charities needs to be entirely shut down by the bishop.

      “The Catholic Church did not find this objectionable. So your point is not relevant.”

      Well, my point is relevant because I disagree with CCB if they placed children in single parent homes.

      “It’s a shame that dogma trumps all else”

      Seriously? It’s a shame that people follow their own consciences and deeply-held beliefs? To me, it sounds like the shame is that they never followed their beliefs up until then.

  • Peg

    It is to bad. I had thought Boston was still operating just without gov’t funding.

    I certainly hope decisions are made for the best interests of children. I’m not always a fan of some of our bishops nor the politics that exist in any organization where self interest rules.

    I believe the best option for children is to have a mother and father in a stable loving sacramental marriage. In life we fall short of the ideal. My children have paid a price for our divorce. We do the best we can. My children have also an amazing chance at a good life for what you refer to as dogma. That is they are being raised with the fullness of love and truth and the advantage of the graces of prayer and sacrament and the tools to rise above any challenges that might come their way in life. I think that children raised in any home situation that is opposed to God suffer terribly without that source and summit of love and strength and truth.

  • FW Ken

    Peg,

    As I understand it, its not just a matter of funding, but of license by the state to place kids. Whoever pays the cost, no license means no placements.

    Indeed its sad when the dogma of gay advocacy trumps the welfare of children. Clearly, the goal is to marginalize and eliminate all who resist. Conform our leave. Gay advocacy is the new Caesar, and demands more than a pinch of incense.

  • Bill S

    “Sounds like they need a new board, or Catholic Charities needs to be entirely shut down by the bishop.”

    It’s scary how much power people are willing to give to the Church hierarchy. Catholic Charities was doing just fine before Archbishop O’Malley’s homophobic involvement. All hell broke loose with his decision to pull the plug on the program. The board knew their jobs better than he did. He should not have interfered.

    • http://www.rosariesforlife.com Dave

      Well, as an alternative, he could just cast them loose and let them be called Content-Free Charities or anything that didn’t have Catholic in the name. I’m a big believer in truth-in-labeling. One of the Bishop’s jobs is to pass on Catholicism. If he allows something anti-Catholic to pass as Catholic he is not living out his calling. (I know, it’s a very difficult job, and we have to pray for them.)

  • Bill S

    “Indeed its sad when the dogma of gay advocacy trumps the welfare of children.”

    They are not mutually exclusive. There is no evidence that gays can’t provide for the welfare of children. No matter how competent and deserving gay couples might be, the Church will never change its stand and Catholics will say anything to defend its misguided leaders. Lay Catholics at Catholic Charities knew what they were doing. It is the hierarchy that doesn’t have a clue.

  • FW Ken

    They are not mutually exclusive.

    Unfortunately, obsessed gay rights advocates have made serving children contingent upon adherence to their party line. Of course, it’s not a matter of “competence”, but it was nice tactic to change the subject. Gays couples could get children from any number of sources, but NO ONE must be allowed to disagree. It is in matters like this, and in your absurd representations, Bill, that we see why these tyrants must be resisted. Catholics have died in this country before: no more know-nothings! You don’t know science, you don’t know history, and now we know that you don’t know the Catholic Faith. No surprise.

  • FW Ken

    Actually, a Catholic Charities in Illinois did cut ties with the Church in light of the Illinois political situation vis-a-vis gay rights.

  • FW Ken

    And here is another reason to oppose gay marriage. It turns out that the French have set up a National Observatory of Secularism to keep an eye on those who don’t march to the party line. They will pay attention to religion, particularly.

  • Bill S

    “You don’t know science, you don’t know history, and now we know that you don’t know the Catholic Faith. No surprise.”

    That’s incorrect. I have a working knowledge of science, history and the Catholic Faith. Your problem with me is that I don’t accept the Catholic Faith and therefore don’t accept many of its political stands. You have no choice but to follow the dictates of the Pope and Bishops and defend them. I can choose to disregard them.

  • FW Ken

    Well, if you say it, it must be true.

    However, you repeatedly make false statements about science and history hence I conclude you are ignorant. It is, of course, possible that you know your statements are false.

    As to my inability to disagree with the Catholic Faith, you cite Catholics who do when it suits your purpose, do obviously we can. I suppose it’s beyond your comprehension that people of good will could come to different conclusions than you.

  • Bill S

    “…you repeatedly make false statements about science and history”

    I don’t know what I have said about science or history that was in any way controversial, let alone wrong.

    “I suppose it’s beyond your comprehension that people of good will could come to different conclusions than you.”

    No. It is not beyond my comprehension. We don’t need to agree.

  • FW Ken

    Your misstatements of fact wrt science and history were noted at the time. You can look them up,

    We don’t need to agree.

    Except, of course, that those who disagree with you are “homophobes”, “bigots”, and “superstitious”. Rebecca has a belief which you reject and therefore has nothing to say to atheists (No roads for the atheists, Rebecca). And do you realize how insulting this is: You have no choice but to follow the dictates of the Pope and Bishops and defend them. That is why I say you have no understanding of the Catholic Faith, and certainly nothing but the most bigoted understanding of how Catholics actually live.

    Now, go build a gulag like a good little atheist.

  • Bill S

    It’s hard not to see people who are so opposed to gays as anything but homophobes and bigots. And it is hard not to look at people who accuse other people as being “influenced by the devil” as being superstitious. I’m sorry if that offends you.

    You obviously have strong feelings against atheists but they are right and you are wrong.

  • SteveP

    Rebecca Hamilton: The Church will be scourged but will again be raised up. The civic impact of “gay marriage” will be more dangerous. The “gay marriage” advocates will not rest easy until all pairings are as sterile as homosexual pairings. History tells us the damage les enrages inflict.

  • FW Ken

    Bill, has anyone ever told you that smug self-righteousness is not the best way to convince others of your views?

  • FW Ken

    One last thing occurs to me: I don’t have strong feeling about atheists as people, although I recognize and abhor the death and destruction atheism wreaks. But after years about hearing how Bright they are, I’m truly disappointed that they aren’t. Ill-informed, narrow-minded, smug… all of that isn’t Bright at all. And the “good without God” meme will play better when we see some real social service. Most atheists seem mainly interested in Christianity. Why not a secular homeless shelter? Maybe start some humanist adoption services, since they seem intent on ruining Christians out of the business. Quit gripping about Christians and DO something.

  • Bill S

    As an atheist and a cultural Catholic, I just see the Catholic Church as imposing its teachings on people who have no interest in its teachings.

    They don’t want to hear the Church’s teachings on abortion because the Church will not be reasonable about what stage of pregnancy a woman should have a right to terminate it. It is absolutely a woman’s right to end a pregnancy, especially in the early stages.

    The Church’s stand on stem cell research, in-vitro fertilization, cloning, etc. has no merit. Especially its concern about destruction of embryos. Embryos are not people and no one wants to hear any arguments about them having souls. That’s just superstition.

    As for the Church’s attitude toward homosexuals, that goes beyond all comprehension. It is downright evil. In fact, there is evil behind the Church’s stand on issues like contraception, use of condoms to protect against disease, same-sex marriage, etc.

    • http://www.rosariesforlife.com Dave

      “As for the Church’s attitude toward homosexuals, that goes beyond all comprehension. It is downright evil.”

      How can you believe in evil if you don’t believe in God? That makes no sense at all. And beyond that, I’m not sure why it would be evil to think that people may do things that are wrong. Even you think that we are doing something wrong. So we simply disagree on which actions are wrong. So basically what it comes down to, Bill, is that we are evil for disagreeing with you!

  • FW Ken

    Bill, I hate to tell you this, but the United States is, historically, a protestant nation. Paranoid ranting about the wicked Catholic Church ignores so many facts that I’m embarrassed for you.

    But start with one simple fact: atheism is the ideology with the body count.

    Hey, check out the gay thing: it’s a scientific fact that gays have shorter lives due to disease and suicide, and domestic violence. That’s true in Sam Francisco and Nigeria. You ate promoting death, Bill.

  • FW Ken

    Oh, and the notion that being gay is some sort of normal variant of human experience has no scientific basis. It’s a political construct, which is why when gays (like atheists) gain power, they turn to the political process to suppress those unwilling to pretend that same-sex acts and relationships are “just like” straight people.

    So as in all matters your address, Bill, your opinion is just an opinion, without basis in fact. The sad part is that people are suffering and dying for your opinion.

    • http://www.rosariesforlife.com Dave

      Well, it’s normal in that some people will be afflicted with that temptation, just like some people will be tempted to get themselves drop-dead drunk, some will be more prone to do violence to other people, some will be tempted to steal for the thrill of it, etc. All of these things have been shown to have some genetic component, and none of them are healthy or helpful to society.

  • Bill S

    “the United States is, historically, a protestant nation. Paranoid ranting about the wicked Catholic Church ignores so many facts that I’m embarrassed for you.”

    I am complaining about the political stands of those on this blog. I know that this is a Protestant nation. That’s why Catholics are opposed to its policies.

    “atheism is the ideology with the body count.”

    Even if that were true, it would not prove that there is a God. You are confusing the truth of an ideology with its effects. Atheism could have negative effects and still be true.

    “gays have shorter lives due to disease and suicide, and domestic violence. That’s true in Sam Francisco and Nigeria. You ate promoting death, Bill.”

    No. Your argument does not justify discrimination against gays.

    “How can you believe in evil if you don’t believe in God? That makes no sense at all.”

    What???! I can believe in good and evil without believing in God. By the way, unlike many atheists, I do believe in intelligent design. I just don’t equate the designer to the Judeo-Christian God, but that’s beside the point.

    “So basically what it comes down to, Bill, is that we are evil for disagreeing with you!”

    You are evil for discriminating against gays, not for disagreeing with me. You will know that this is true someday. Mark my words.

    “The sad part is that people are suffering and dying for your opinion.”

    No. No one is suffering and dying for my opinion. My opinion carries no significant weight in causing suffering and dying of anyone. I had no influence over Roe v. Wade, if that’s what you’re implying.

    • http://www.rosariesforlife.com Dave

      Bill, please define evil for me without reference to God.

      Please also define discrimination, especially discrimination against gays. Discriminate simply means to “recognize a distinction.” So please define the evil we are committing by recognizing the distinction that homosexual relationships cannot create life, and that they are inherently unhealthy.

  • Bill S

    I hope you noticed the tolerance for gays in the inaugural prayer and speech. You would do well to learn from it.

    • http://www.rosariesforlife.com Dave

      I don’t know about anyone else, but I don’t pay any attention to Pres. Obama or his unintended court jester, except when I have to because he is threatening the American way of life, which is distressingly often. I just hope we survive the next four years of Mr. Incompetent.

  • Bill S

    Look, Dave

    You are the one discriminating against gays, which is wrong. It really is that plain and simple.

    ” So please define the evil we are committing by recognizing the distinction that homosexual relationships cannot create life, and that they are inherently unhealthy”

    There you go right there. Gays can’t marry because they can’t create life? Really? Says who?

    It’s discrimination, it’s homophobia, it’s bigotry. I’m not going to play word games with you. The only reason it is OK with you is because the Church has told you so. It’s wrong.

    And you could have learned some civility if you had watched the inauguration. You and the Church are living in the Dark Ages.

    Don’t feel bad. The Russian Orthodox Church and the Muslims are even worse to gays than the RCC.

    • SteveP

      Civility, from civitas, is the rights and responsibilities of a citizen. We hear much about rights in this government but little about responsibility. One of those responsibilities is to understand that “no” mean no and a “no” is not necessarily injustice.

      No man has a right to another man’s pension. This is not intolerance. This is not uncompassion. This is not discriminatory. This is civility.

      “They spoke of such novelties as ‘civilisation’, when this was really only a feature of their slavery.” [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civitas – note the words still used by the Church; you might find that it, the Body of Christ, is the only civis left in the world.]

  • http://www.rosariesforlife.com Dave

    “There you go right there. Gays can’t marry because they can’t create life? Really? Says who?”

    Says most everybody in the history of the world up until now. Marriage is primarily to protect and provide a stable environment for children, not to formalize a romantic commitment. The very term “marriage” in etymology relates to the term “matrimony” which comes from the Latin “matrem” meaning mother.

  • FW Ken

    Even if that were true, it would not prove that there is a God.

    Nice go at changing the subject, but I am not trying to prove there is a god. The body count of atheism is a matter of record.

    And you could have learned some civility if you had watched the inauguration. You and the Church are living in the Dark Ages

    Real civil of you there, Bill. Since you have neither science nor history, nor any other intellectual discipline on your side, you resort of slander.

    By the way, I wasn’t referring to dead babies, but dead homosexuals who bought into the ideological snake oil you are pushing.

  • FW Ken

    I know that this is a Protestant nation. That’s why Catholics are opposed to its policies.

    That was ignorant, but worse, it was incoherent.

    The only reason it is OK with you is because the Church has told you so.

    Again, insult in place of argument. I recognize you hate Catholics, BillS, but you discredit yourself and atheism in general with these brickbats. Who do you think they impress or affect?

  • Bill S

    OK. I shouldn’t have allowed myself to get roped into trying to defend gay rights with people so set in their religiously induced biases. I’ve had enough.


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