I've been saying that the greatest threat to religious freedom in America is the push to legalize so-called "same-sex marriage."
Many have accused me of exaggeration. But the evidence is becoming clearer by the day, and now it's hitting very close to home.
I talk on this week's Two Minute Warning about the dreadful federal district court decision concerning proposition 8. A federal judge found as a fact that religious beliefs "harm" gays. And now we find out that the Southern Poverty Law Center will declare the Family Research Council a "hate group." Why? Because it is against so-called "gay marriage" and engages in "demonizing propaganda." Please!
And now, Apple—that's right, the maker of the iPhone and iPad—has declared the Manhattan Declaration, and I quote, "offensive to large groups of people."
Here's what happened. The Manhattan Declaration created an application—what's called an "app"—for users of the iPhone and iPad. The app would allow users to read the Manhattan Declaration and its defense of human life, traditional marriage, and religious freedom. Folks could also sign the Declaration and share it with friends. Apple gave the Manhattan Declaration app a 4+rating—meaning that it was "free from objectionable material."
Well, it was free from objectionable material right up until Thanksgiving weekend, when a group that supports so-called "gay marriage" protested to Apple that the Manhattan Declaration promoted "hate" and "homophobia" and was "anti-gay."
Now Apple has pulled the Manhattan Declaration App from its app store.
Folks, I want you to go to ManhattanDeclaration.org and read the declaration. Find me any offensive or inflammatory language. Show me where it promotes hate or homophobia. You can't. Because the Manhattan Declaration declares that God loves all people. It uses respectful but firm language in stating that we Christians will defend traditional marriage.
The Manhattan Declaration is signed by 50 Catholic bishops, all but a few evangelical leaders, and the Patriarch of the Eastern Orthodox Church, along with a half a million individual Christians.
What's offensive about it? One thing, and one thing only: It's a thoroughly biblical view of sexual morality; it's an uncompromising position that marriage is one man and one woman. Every assertion made in the Manhattan Declaration comes from the Bible. So how long before all of Apple's Christian apps—or Islamic or Jewish apps—are banned for being offensive?
Some in the gay community aren't angry at the signers of the Manhattan Declaration because we hate them—we don't! I've cradled many prisoners dying of AIDS in my arms. They're angry at us because we disagree with them. But civil, open discourse is what keeps our society free. We can air our disagreements in public. That's what democracy is all about. And it's tragic that a leading culture-shaper like Apple would suppress that kind of discussion.
Please, go to ManhattanDeclaration.org and sign the Manhattan Declaration. And then tell your friends and family about Apple's decision. Tweet it. Post your thoughts on Facebook. You may even want to tell Steve Jobs what you think. I've tried to reach him, but so far have been unsuccessful. His email is [email protected]. But please, make sure your communication is civil and respectful.
Just like the Manhattan Declaration.
Chuck Colson's daily BreakPoint commentary airs each weekday on more than one thousand outlets with an estimated listening audience of one million people. BreakPoint provides a Christian perspective on today's news and trends via radio, interactive media, and print.
Published on December 3, 2010.