Beliefs or Bigotry: Perry Before the 9th Circuit Court

Chuck Colson | BreakPoint | Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Beliefs or Bigotry: Perry Before the 9th Circuit Court

For the past year on breakpoint, we've talked a lot about the threat to religious freedom in America.

We've talked about Christian adoption agencies closing rather than being forced to place children with same-sex couples.

We've talked about health care professionals having to choose between their consciences and participating in immoral medical practices.

We've talked about the Administration playing fast and loose with the notion of religious freedom—choosing instead to talk about freedom of "worship."

But these threats to our first freedom pale in comparison to the threat posed by a single court case now before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

The case is Perry v. Schwarzenegger, in which federal Judge Vaughn Walker overturned California's Proposition 8 restricting marriage to one man and one woman. Judge Walker not only overturned the will of the people of California, he put all religious believers on notice: Their faith means nothing in the eyes of the law.

Actually, it's even worse than that. The judge found as fact that "Religious beliefs that gay and lesbian relationships are sinful or inferior to heterosexual relationships harm gays and lesbians."

If this judge's decision is upheld by the Ninth Circuit and eventually the Supreme Court, the religious beliefs of hundreds of millions of Americans will be seen as harmful in the eyes of the law.

Judge Walker also concluded that, quote, "Many of the purported interests identified by proponents are nothing more than a fear or unarticulated dislike of same-sex couples." End quote. So, according to Judge Walker, if you believe marriage should be reserved for one man and one woman, you are a homophobe and a bigot.

Such legal reasoning not only charts the course for destroying religious liberty, it paves the way for societal chaos. Arguing against so-called same-sex "marriage" is not "gay bashing." It is an argument for preserving traditional marriage.  I've spent 35 years ministering in prisons and have seen the tragic results of broken homes. I know the disaster that awaits if so-called same-sex "marriage" is allowed to further devalue marriage and weaken the traditional American family.

But I want to be very clear: As dangerous as Judge Walker's ruling is, all is not lost. Not yet. As I say in today's Two Minute Warning, which I want you to watch at Colson, we Christians can still influence the outcome of Perry v. Schwarzenegger—even as the Ninth Circuit, and then the Supreme Court, hears the case. But we have to speak loudly for our voices to be heard.

So I want you to do two things right now. First, go to Colson and watch my Two Minute Warning. It will give you some good ideas on what you and your church can do. Second, read the Manhattan Declaration. Familiarize yourself with the arguments as to why traditional marriage is so important. And then, sign the Manhattan Declaration and get your friends to sign it as well.

We need more signatures. Time is of the essence. We cannot sit on the sidelines and watch our first freedom be destroyed by judicial fiat.