SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

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SEG
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SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by SEG » Mon Mar 25, 2019 5:51 am

I hope the good word spreads:

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/thefreeth ... omophobia/
THE authorities in South Africa have been trying for some time to crack down on unscrupulous ministers and churches who prey on the gullible by providing ‘miracles’ for cash.

But according to Pierre De Vos, above, who teaches Constitutional law at the University of Cape Town Law:

The harm inflicted by some churches and other religious institutions against women and gays and lesbians is seldom mentioned when the possibility of regulating such institutions is raised.

But this could now change, thanks to a “stunning” High Court ruling against the Dutch Reformed Church, once referred to by many as the “Much Deformed Church” and ‘the National Party at Prayer” because of its unwavering support during South Africa’s apartheid era for the separation of races, and the vicious methods used to enforce such divisions. In the 1980s the church was expelled from the World Alliance of Reformed Churches for its support of apartheid.

Earlier this month the High Court in Pretoria ordered the church (also known as the NG Kerk) to stop discriminating against same-sex couples and gay clergy.

It ruled that the Dutch Reformed Church (DRC) must end its November 2016 policy that reversed a landmark October 2015 decision to let individual church councils recognise and bless same-sex relationships and to allow non-celibate gay clergy.


Image via Hartford Seminary
Eleven members of the church, including the Rev Laurie Gaum, above, took the matter to court, not only arguing that the November 2016 decision was unprocedural and in contravention of the church’s own policies but was also unconstitutional.

A full bench of the court agreed on both counts, most significantly asserting that the church’s discrimination against LGBT communities was unconstitutional.

The decision could have major consequences for churches that continue to exclude and reject sexual and gender minorities.

The judges found that the DRC’s 2016 decision inherently diminished the applicants’ dignity:

Because same-sex relationships are tainted as being unworthy of mainstream church ceremonies, and persons in same-sex relationships cannot be a minister of the church.

The DRC had argued that as a religious institution it is protected by religious freedom and has the right to make its own rules and follow its own doctrine. It admitted its policy was discriminatory, but claimed it was not unfairly so.
An elated Gaum said:

We had a good day in court and justice has been done. Our request on constitutional grounds has also been granted which has implications for all other denominations and religions, so it’s quite amazing.

Gaum said the court had confirmed that the church’s actions did not affirm human dignity and have been discriminatory, violating the constitutional provision which prohibits sexual orientation discrimination.

The ruling means that ministers in the DRC will now be able to bless same-sex weddings if allowed to do so by their church councils. Those in same-sex relationships can also no longer be excluded from becoming ministers in the church.

Gaum acknowledged that the DRC could still appeal the matter, possibly all the way to the Constitutional Court, adding:

We hope the church will be wise enough to not go that route but at the moment we don’t know.

He believes that the DRC’s regressive position has been a terrible mistake.

It’s tragic. You know, the best of religion is supposed to not discriminate, especially in the Christian gospel. Non-discrimination is supposed to be one of the central tenets but, of course, it depends from what angle you’re looking at it.

Gaum remains hopeful that the ruling will see the DRC becoming fully inclusive.

This is a great step. Of course there could be a backlash in the process. But for the moment we are celebrating.

De Vos believes the court made the “correct” decision.

The decision of the church in 2016 to revert to its previous position which required all dominees to discriminate against gays and lesbians … was a decision sparked by political pressure, albeit pressure applied by individuals who motivated their views on religious grounds. It is therefore not surprising that the court held that there was no pressing religious purpose to justify the discrimination against gays and lesbians.

In its judgment, the court said:

The sting of the past and continuing discrimination against both gays and lesbians lies in the message it conveys, namely, that viewed as individuals or in their same-sex relationships, they do not have the inherent dignity and are not worthy of the human respect possessed by and accorded to heterosexuals and their relationships.

This denies to gays and lesbians that which is foundational to our Constitution and the concepts of equality and dignity, namely that all persons have the same inherent worth and dignity, whatever their other differences may be.
“There are no known non-biblical references to a historical Jesus by any historian or other writer of the time during and shortly after Jesus's purported advent.” His so-called life was a farce.

Lich
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Re: SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by Lich » Wed Mar 27, 2019 2:35 pm

I have to disagree with this ruling. In a free society, people should be allowed to believe, say, and do as they like, so long as they're not impeding upon that same freedom in others. This would include freedom of religion. Telling a religion what it can and can't do within its own doctrines is an affront to freedom of religion. If church people want to be homophobic, let them be homophobic. Homosexuals and transgenders have the freedom to not associate with them. One need not go to a church to get married. It is rather hypocritical for a group of people to demand freedom within a society, and then turn around and demand that another group of people not have that same freedom. People are free to accept and reject whatever they want to, so long as they are not denying that same freedom to others. Homosexuality goes against their religion, therefore if you force them to accept homosexuality within their churches, you take away their religious freedom.
Delusion is denial of reality, and reality is truth. If the truth offends you, guess what you are.

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Re: SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by SEG » Wed Mar 27, 2019 7:42 pm

Lich wrote:
Wed Mar 27, 2019 2:35 pm
I have to disagree with this ruling. In a free society, people should be allowed to believe, say, and do as they like, so long as they're not impeding upon that same freedom in others. This would include freedom of religion. Telling a religion what it can and can't do within its own doctrines is an affront to freedom of religion. If church people want to be homophobic, let them be homophobic. Homosexuals and transgenders have the freedom to not associate with them. One need not go to a church to get married. It is rather hypocritical for a group of people to demand freedom within a society, and then turn around and demand that another group of people not have that same freedom. People are free to accept and reject whatever they want to, so long as they are not denying that same freedom to others. Homosexuality goes against their religion, therefore if you force them to accept homosexuality within their churches, you take away their religious freedom.
What happens when you substitute homosexuals for black people? "Black people go against their religion, therefore if you force them to accept black people within their churches, you take away their religious freedom." Are you ok with that?
“There are no known non-biblical references to a historical Jesus by any historian or other writer of the time during and shortly after Jesus's purported advent.” His so-called life was a farce.

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Re: SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by Lich » Thu Mar 28, 2019 1:38 am

Of course I'm okay with it. It's not against any law to be racist. People are allowed to be stupid, ignorant, and down right retarded. Until their stupidity, ignorance, or retardation impedes upon the freedoms of another, they're free to be so.

You and I believe whole heartedly that racists are wrong, and would have a world where they do not exist. But here's the thing: There are 7 billion people in this world. Do you think all of them believe as we do? Definitely not. What if the ones who don't believe as we do end up in power? What do you think they would do to us? Would you like for them to have the ability to ban us from the world, the same as we would ban them? If you wish to prevent such a thing, then you wish not to force your beliefs upon others in a legal sense. Racists have a right to be racist, just like you have a right to be an atheist. That's the way it has to be.
Delusion is denial of reality, and reality is truth. If the truth offends you, guess what you are.

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Re: SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by SEG » Thu Mar 28, 2019 2:54 am

Lich wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 1:38 am
Of course I'm okay with it. It's not against any law to be racist. People are allowed to be stupid, ignorant, and down right retarded. Until their stupidity, ignorance, or retardation impedes upon the freedoms of another, they're free to be so.
I'll ignore your "retardation" slur against people with mental disabilities. My daughter has problems and it is not appreciated. Yes, people can choose what views they have in private, but in the public sphere it is against the law. The Mormons had a racist culture until they were brought into line via the media in the seventies. See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_peo ... _Mormonism
Between the 19th and mid-20th centuries, some Mormons held racist views, and exclusion from priesthood was not the only discrimination practiced toward black people. With Joseph Smith as the mayor of Nauvoo, blacks were prohibited from holding office or joining the Nauvoo Legion.[97] Brigham Young taught that equality efforts were misguided, claiming that those who fought for equality among blacks were trying to elevate them "to an equality with those whom Nature and Nature's God has indicated to be their masters, their superiors", but that instead they should "observe the law of natural affection for our kind."[111]

A 1959 report by the US Commission found that blacks experienced the most wide-spread inequality in Utah, and Mormon teachings on blacks were used to explain racist teachings on blacks.[59] During the 1960s and 1970s, Mormons in the western United States were close to averages in the United States in racial attitudes.[19] In 1966, Armand Mauss surveyed Mormons on racial attitudes and discriminatory practices. He found that "Mormons resembled the rather 'moderate' denominations (such as Presbyterian, Congregational, Episcopalian), rather than the 'fundamentalists' or the sects."[112] Negative racial attitudes within Mormonism varied inversely with education, occupation, community size of origin, and youth, reflecting the national trend. Urban Mormons with a more orthodox view of Mormonism tended to be more tolerant.[112] The American racial attitudes caused difficulties when the church tried to apply the one-drop rule to other areas. For example, many members in Brazil did not understand American classifications of race and how it applied to the priesthood ban, causing a rift between the missionaries and members.[39]

Anti-black jokes commonly circulated among Mormons before the 1978 revelation
You and I believe whole heartedly that racists are wrong, and would have a world where they do not exist. But here's the thing: There are 7 billion people in this world. Do you think all of them believe as we do? Definitely not. What if the ones who don't believe as we do end up in power? What do you think they would do to us? Would you like for them to have the ability to ban us from the world, the same as we would ban them? If you wish to prevent such a thing, then you wish not to force your beliefs upon others in a legal sense. Racists have a right to be racist, just like you have a right to be an atheist.
Sure, as long as they keep their views to themselves.
“There are no known non-biblical references to a historical Jesus by any historian or other writer of the time during and shortly after Jesus's purported advent.” His so-called life was a farce.

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Re: SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by Lich » Thu Mar 28, 2019 6:12 am

SEG wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 2:54 am
Yes, people can choose what views they have in private, but in the public sphere it is against the law. The Mormons had a racist culture until they were brought into line via the media in the seventies. See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_peo ... _Mormonism
A church isn't a "public sphere." Christians aren't going out into the streets telling people they can't use the sidewalk unless they're heterosexual. This is a church they own and run based on a religion people can choose not to follow. What's next? Outlawing fraternities because they don't allow women? No one has some "legal right" to enter a church. If you don't like the religion, then stay the fuck away from their church. It's as simple as that.

SEG wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 2:54 am
Sure, as long as they keep their views to themselves.
Ah, so now you're going against freedom of speech? You want to silence everyone who disagrees with you? Create an echo chamber of your own belief system? Do I need to explain to you why that doesn't work?
Delusion is denial of reality, and reality is truth. If the truth offends you, guess what you are.

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Re: SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by SEG » Thu Mar 28, 2019 7:35 am

SEG wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 2:54 am
Yes, people can choose what views they have in private, but in the public sphere it is against the law. The Mormons had a racist culture until they were brought into line via the media in the seventies. See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_peo ... _Mormonism
Lich wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 6:12 am
A church isn't a "public sphere." Christians aren't going out into the streets telling people they can't use the sidewalk unless they're heterosexual. This is a church they own and run based on a religion people can choose not to follow. What's next? Outlawing fraternities because they don't allow women? No one has some "legal right" to enter a church. If you don't like the religion, then stay the fuck away from their church. It's as simple as that.
No, a church is an institution that is open to the public unless otherwise stated. Institutions like churches have responsibilities just like any other place where people gather in public for a common reason. Blacklisting, offending or mocking blacks, gays, anti-vaxxers etc is illegal in these types of institutions.
SEG wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 2:54 am
Sure, as long as they keep their views to themselves.
Lich wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 6:12 am
Ah, so now you're going against freedom of speech? You want to silence everyone who disagrees with you? Create an echo chamber of your own belief system? Do I need to explain to you why that doesn't work?
Nope, you can rant all you like in your own place, just don't bring your racist or homophobic rants into the public sphere or you will find yourself castigated. Keep it going and you will get charged.
“There are no known non-biblical references to a historical Jesus by any historian or other writer of the time during and shortly after Jesus's purported advent.” His so-called life was a farce.

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Re: SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by Lich » Thu Mar 28, 2019 5:29 pm

SEG wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 7:35 am
No, a church is an institution that is open to the public unless otherwise stated. Institutions like churches have responsibilities just like any other place where people gather in public for a common reason. Blacklisting, offending or mocking blacks, gays, anti-vaxxers etc is illegal in these types of institutions.
Actually a church is a place for religious function. It's not a public forum. Do you think they should allow Satanists in their church? Apparently you do. Exactly how unreasonable is your mind? To believe a church should allow the very things they stand against into their sacred place? You need to read a book, bro. A restaurant is a "public place," yet many enforce dress codes. Do you know why they're allowed to do that? It's because they OWN the establishment. A church isn't a god damn public park. It's a religious institution upheld by a committee, and that committee makes the rules for their establishment. You're allowed to enter a church because they say you can, not because it's some public forum you have a legal right to attend.
SEG wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 7:35 am
Nope, you can rant all you like in your own place, just don't bring your racist or homophobic rants into the public sphere or you will find yourself castigated. Keep it going and you will get charged.
So you want people who disagree with you to stay out of the public eye so you don't have to hear them. You know, I really hope Christians take over your country one day, and ban atheists from speaking against Christianity in the public eye. Maybe then you'll comprehend how utterly stupid that is.
Delusion is denial of reality, and reality is truth. If the truth offends you, guess what you are.

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Re: SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by Chapabel » Fri Mar 29, 2019 12:48 am

SEG wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 7:35 am
No, a church is an institution that is open to the public unless otherwise stated. Institutions like churches have responsibilities just like any other place where people gather in public for a common reason. Blacklisting, offending or mocking blacks, gays, anti-vaxxers etc is illegal in these types of institutions.
Churches are private organizations. While our church welcomes everyone we have the right to have anyone removed we wish to. If someone is causing a disturbance we have every right to escort them off the property. If need be we can call the police and have them remove anyone we don’t want there. We do not have to allow anyone to promote doctrine that contradicts our beliefs. As a private organization we will allow homosexuals attend our church but they cannot become members of our church until they are saved and born again. That applies to everyone not just gays.

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Re: SA court rules against church’s reversion to homophobia

Post by Lich » Fri Mar 29, 2019 2:06 am

And remember, SEG, I am 200% against the evil of Christianity, and I'm still saying this. The reason is very simple: When you try to censor a group of people, they gain an even bigger voice than they had before, because the public doesn't get to listen to you counter their arguments with reasonable rebuttal. You can try to create an echo chamber filled with your own voice all you wish to, and these Christians, and racists, and all the other evil fucks in the world will still exist, and still spread. The only difference is that when you block them out, you aren't fighting their propaganda. Instead you're ignoring it and allowing it to continue unabated. The only way to teach a society that something is wrong is to allow them to be exposed to it, and hear you speak against it, because that's the only way they get the opportunity to compare the two and decide which one makes more sense.
Delusion is denial of reality, and reality is truth. If the truth offends you, guess what you are.

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