Traditional Marriage Advocates Finding Increasing Intolerance
BY GAIL BESSE
August 20-26, 2006 Issue | Posted 8/21/06 at 10:00 AM
QUESNEL, B.C. — Christopher Kempling applied for a counseling job in his public school district in Canada’s western province of British Columbia. In June, he was not only turned down — he was banned from all counseling positions district-wide.
Underqualified? He has a doctorate in psychology.
But he also has strong Christian beliefs and a history of speaking out against the homosexual lifestyle.
His case and a growing number of
“Although I was the most qualified applicant, my superiors don’t wish to allow me access to students who may be of alternate orientation (even though there has never been a complaint against me from one),” he said.
Kempling’s saga began in 1997 when, on his own time, he wrote several letters to his local paper in Quesnel. He criticized his teachers’ union for promoting homosexuality.
A member of the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality, he cited research showing the lifestyle’s dangers.
For these “discriminatory writings,” Kempling was convicted of “unbecoming conduct” in 2002 by the British Columbia College of Teachers. He’s been suspended without pay twice, for a total of four months.
He was also punished by school officials when later, as a Christian Heritage Party candidate for Parliament, he publicly explained his party’s opposition to same-sex “marriage.”
He unsuccessfully appealed to both the province’s appeals and supreme courts as a violation of his rights of free speech and religion. The British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal refused to hear him, and finally the Supreme Court of Canada in January declined the case.
“It’s astounding this can be happening in a free and democratic society,” said Kempling, 50.
“The writing’s on the wall for the
“There was no American case law to cite, since no American court had ever held that there was a fundamental constitutional right to same sex ‘marriage,’” Bull said.
Now that it is legal, officials
and advocates are working hard to make it seem normal. Several
The trend is national. The National Education Association voted in July to eliminate “discrimination” against same-sex unions and homosexual “marriages” in states that have legalized them. The 2.8-million member union also decided to replace the word “tolerance” with the word “acceptance” in its policies.
There’s intimidation at work too,
marriage defenders claim. Those who signed a marriage amendment petition in the
Among the repercussions: a
Tom Lang, founder of the pro-homosexual “marriage” website Knowthyneighbor.org, defended the action. “We do not condone yelling and insults,” he said. “That incident was wrong.”
As for the protests at churches, he said the group was respectful. “Just as people have a right to sign a petition, people also have a right to question those who would have their rights taken away,” he said.
But grassroots groups are fighting back, and one that’s had some success exposing homosexual activism is Mass Resistance.
“I don’t think [this cultural battle] is as hopeless as people think,” said the Waltham, Mass.-based head, Brian Camenker, who is Jewish. He has found that photos and the Internet are great communicators.
For example, Macy’s department
store was taken by surprise in June when thousands of callers jammed its
Mass Resistance e-mailed photos to its supporters; within two days Macy’s removed the mannequins.
Dr. Gilbert Lavoie, an East Boston Catholic with public health experience (he served two years in the Army as chief of epidemiology and infectious diseases for the European Command and also worked for the World Health Organization Smallpox Eradication Program in Bangladesh), recently spoke on Mass Resistance’s weekly radio show about the issue’s long-term effects.
“We should not be teaching our children that homosexuality and heterosexuality are equal,” he said. “It’s a terrible thing to confuse the minds of young children.”
Gail Besse is based in
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