April 19, 2010

Lord Carey’s homophobia offensive to Christians


by David Masters

Lord Carey’s demand that Christians should be allowed to discriminate against gay people is offensive to the “vast majority of Christians”, the British Humanist Association (BHA) has claimed.

The BHA made the statement after Lord Carey, former Archbishop of Canterbury, told the Court of Appeal that British law should distinguish between real homophobia and religious homophobia.

“Lord Carey’s distinction between religious and ‘real’ homophobes is false, and should hold no weight in the decisions of our judiciary,” said Naomi Phillips, BHA head of public affairs.

“He is asking for two laws, one that permits Christians to behave as they want in the workplace, even refusing to provide gay people a public service, and one for everyone else.

“Lord Carey’s contention that the vast majority of Christians would agree with him that is particularly offensive, not least to the millions of gay and lesbian Christians in this country and around the world whose lifestyles he describes as ‘self destructive conduct’.”

Lord Carey also told the Court of Appeal that Britain faces “civil unrest” over recent court cases where claims of unlawful discrimination against Christians were dismissed.

The BHA dismissed these claims as “scaremongering”.

“The suggestions in Lord Carey’s statement that recent court judgements which have not upheld claims of unlawful discrimination against Christians in the workplace are a threat to the social order and a step away from barring Christians from any employment is scaremongering, and a desperate cry from those unrepresentative few who are trying to retain the kind of privileges for religion that have no place in our society,” Phillips said.

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