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07/13/2007

When are we NOT attacking the church?

by Jeremy Hooper

::sigh:: Why must the groups who oppose us always go to such lengths to deceive?

This a headline running on the Concerned Women For America's main page:

Picture 1-90

Wow, gays gunning for the church! That's what it sounds like, right?

Well, here's the truth: The lesbian couple being discussed, Harriet Bernstein and Luisa Paster, are NOT attempting to sue a church. They have merely filed a civil rights complaint against an association that governs a public accommodation with church ties. What happened is the ladies attempted to book the boardwalk pavilion of Ocean Grove, NJ, a popular spot for weddings and ceremonies in the Garden State. Here's the pavilion in question:

Picture 2-82

The public boardwalk pavilion is controlled by the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association, which is governed by a Methodist board of trustees. However, the pavilion is completely open to the public, and to participate in ceremonies on the pavilion, one does not have to be a Methodist. In fact, many locals have no clue about the church ties. So considering the public nature of the pavilion, the ladies (and many legal experts) feel the the ban violates the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination, and they have taken strides to have the whole thing sorted out on a legal basis. They (and again, many legal experts) feel that if (a) civil unions are commanded by the court to be equal to marriage, and (b) the pavilion can be used by people of all faiths, what is being applied to them is a double standard.

Yet in this headline and in the associated audio commentary, CWA never once considers the true legal issue here -- whether a piece of property that's open to public can claim itself to be a religious accommodation when its convenient. They instead present it to their followers in a way that makes it sound as if those damn militant homosexuals are trying to once again circumvent religious freedom. CWA's Matt Barber actually says it is a situation where gays are trying to "force Christians to kowtow to obey the demands of the militant homosexual lobby."

Honestly, we're beginning to think they despise reasoned consideration even more than they detest evolution-believing atheism!

If you'd like to hear the CWA's discussion on this, click the link below. But be careful -- they are a church based organization, and even though they allow folks of all stripes to listen to their commentaries, they just might try to invoke their religious freedoms to deny gay ears the pleasure. It is, after all, their Godly world -- we just "sin" in it.

Church Sued for Not Allowing a Civil Union Ceremony on its Property [CWA]

**TAKE ACTION: End the ban on civil unions on Ocean Grove's public boardwalk [Garden State Equality]

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