Additional thoughts on religious freedom and exemptions

/, General/Additional thoughts on religious freedom and exemptions

Additional thoughts on religious freedom and exemptions

You might like to also read my main article here Religious freedom? What did Jesus say?

Are gay people being too precious?

“What’s the fuss” some say. “Surely you’d just go to another baker. If you know some business will discriminate against you why would you go there.”

The problem with this is that in all these cases the gay couple had no idea of the vendors beliefs, just the service they provided. Had they known, they may or may not have used their services. I think we need to put ourselves in the gay couples shoes for a moment. Unless you’ve experienced being rejected like this you may not have an understanding of what it’s really like.

You’re planning a very special day. You’re in love. You’re excited. You go to the service provider to discuss your plans. Then they dropped the bombshell. “Sorry I can’t provide those services because I’m a Christian and therefore I can’t bake your cake is that would mean I am approving of your lifestyle”. …..or words to that effect.

How does it make you feel to have someone say that to you? This may also have been said so that others around overheard.

Do the gay couple smile politely and say ‘thanks for letting us know’, then leave?

At that moment you feel many things. Humiliated. Embarrassed. Crushed. Shamed. Mortified. Rejected. Angry. Lots of emotions. And what some people forget is that experiences like this can trigger past hurt and trauma for LGBT people. Most gay and lesbian people have experienced the pain of rejection in their lives. Some many times. Some of us have been rejected by our churches, Christian friends and family. It’s painful. It hurts.

Subjecting gay and lesbian people to further experiences of rejection and trauma is cruel. Legislation to make it legal is not in the spirit of the law which is designed to protect not harm isn’t it?.

Will you serve me I’m gay?

If religious freedom laws are introduced then it gives people the right to discriminate. I don’t believe that gay and lesbian people should have to go around asking businesses and business owners the ridiculous question “Will you serve me/can I purchase your goods/services I’m gay?’

Maybe the solution would be for Christian businesses and business owners to have large signs in their premises saying “We are Christians. Because of our Christian beliefs we don’t serve members of the LGBT community”. Signs like these used to be in shops like “No coloured served here”. Of course this is also ridiculous. I also doubt they’d be willing to do it as it that would mean that family and friends of LGBT people would also walk out and therefore they’d lose more business.

Isn’t this claim on religious freedom hypocritical?

Let’s take the example of the cake baker. Do they question every person who wants them to bake a cake for their wedding and ask them questions like. “Are you both virgins? Have you been living together before you get married?”. No they don’t. Why? Because it’s rude and actually none of their business. But yet it IS against their Christian beliefs that say no sex outside of marriage.  They bake the cake without so much of blink of the eye or a twinge of conscience. This is hypocritical to target just one group of people who don’t fit into your belief system and conveniently ignore the rest. It is most likely more about a homophobic attitude than a Christian belief.

Think others should read this? Share NOW on social media using the buttons below. THANKS!

By | 2017-12-06T17:28:58+00:00 December 6th, 2017|Categories: Church, General|Tags: |0 Comments

About the Author:

Anthony Venn-Brown

Anthony Venn-Brown is one of Australia’s foremost commentators on faith and sexuality. His best-selling autobiography ‘A Life of Unlearning – a preacher’s struggle with his homosexuality, church and faith‘, detailing his journey from married, high profile preacher in Australia’s growing mega-churches, such as Hillsong, to living as an openly gay man, has impacted 1,000’s globally. Anthony was the co-founder and former leader of Freedom 2 b[e], Australia’s largest network of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) people from Christian backgrounds. He is also an educator and consultant on LGBT/faith issues and leader in deconstructing the ‘ex-gay’ myth. Anthony is the founder and CEO of Ambassadors & Bridge Builders International and has been twice voted ‘One of the 25 Most Influential Gay and Lesbian Australians’ (2007 & 2009).

Leave A Comment