The suspicion occurs that there is no single group in the UK so intolerant as the supposedly tolerant, inclusive and diverse liberal elite.
Fact: If you don’t 100% buy into their rebranded ideology and values, you’ll be branded a homophobic bigot and hounded for your fascist and intolerant views. Religious belief, science and biology are all alike irrelevant before the power of the new Weltanschauung!
The latest figure to fall victim to this narrow-minded prejudice is well known American evangelist Franklin Graham, son of Billie. Mr Graham, intent on bringing revival to the UK similar to the crusades led by his father in the 1950s, arranged a four-month evangelistic tour of the UK, to start this June. The venues had been booked, publicity had started to go out … and that was when the problems started. Franklin Graham says gay people are sinners, fumed LGBT ideologues. He mustn’t be allowed to voice such hate-filled bigotry – the tour must be cancelled!
In their campaign of vilification they have been remarkably successful (https://www.pinknews.co.uk/2020/01/31/franklin-graham-uk-tour-tatters-venues-drop-anti-lgbt-preacher/ ). But is any of it true? Does Mr Graham really hate gays, singling them for special condemnation as having committed unforgiveable sin?
The fact is, the allegations could not be farther from the truth. Mr Graham, it turns out, has committed the cardinal sin of believing the Bible, which clearly says that homosexuality, along with such things as fornication, adultery, incest, theft, blasphemy and the like … are all sins. But this, we would point out, is based on love for the lost, not hate. All of us, the evangelist says, are sinners, and all of us need to repent in order to be saved.
The heart of the gospel, and what Christ himself taught, you might think. But for ideologues intent on imposing their rebranded, totalitarian version of morality, allowing Franklin Graham to stand up and speak would apparently be giving him a platform for ‘hate’.
Before such vitriolic pressure, the big arenas booked in Glasgow, Sheffield, Milton Keynes, Liverpool, Birmingham and Newport have all buckled – Newcastle alone at the moment remains, though there is every sign that too might soon follow suit (https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/billy-grahams-son-defiant-as-tour-dates-axed-lp95thncj). Whatever you think of Mr Graham’s personal style, however, Christians will no doubt be pleased to learn that the tour is still scheduled to go ahead, though it will take place now in smaller venues/churches across the country.
But whether or not the tour goes ahead isn’t the point. Because the real issue here is, in a democratic society committed to the rule of law, how can these venomous and intimidatory tactics – that drive out someone who has done no wrong, and hasn’t broken the law – ever be acceptable? In particular, how is it possible that those attacking Mr Graham should be allowed to be so systemically intolerant and bigoted, categorically refusing the right of Bible believing Christians to defend their faith? Why have protesting activists not been arrested for hate crimes?
We would remind the Government and those tasked with upholding the law that, under Art 9 of the Human Rights Act 1998, everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, and to manifest that belief in public. (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1998/42/schedule/1/part/I/chapter/8)
We would further remind them that, under the Equality Act 2010, people must not be discriminated against because they follow a particular religion, and that religion or belief forms one of the nine protected characteristics prescribed by law (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/section/10).
We therefore call on Her Majesty’s Government to uphold tolerance and respect for all, and to defend the right of Christians to practise and manifest their belief without intimidation or pressure. We call for bullying opponents to be investigated for hate crimes against Christians and prosecuted.
Stop hate speech against Christians. Investigate Franklin Graham’s bullying opponents for hate crimes!
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