I am proud to be a Canadian. But I am not proud of everything that takes place in Canada. I just read this story about a registry set up in Quebec, with government approval, to record all words and acts deemed to be homophobic.
Let me make myself completely clear: I AM AGAINST HOMOPHOBIA. Now the problem with that is the word ‘homophobia’ is so fluid that it means everything and it means nothing. So this is what I mean when I am against homophobia. I am against verbal, emotional and physical abuse that is aimed at causing harm to homosexuals. That is still too vague, so let be clearer. To say that the Bible teaches homosexuality is a sin or that homosexuality is not God’s plan for humanity, is NOT verbal abuse, even if a particular person may be offended by it. We can not define abuse by who is offended because every single word or action in any context would be abuse, as someone would be offended. Abuse is defined by the purpose of the speaker or the doer. So if I preach from Romans that Paul teaches that homosexuality is a sin, that is NOT a homophobic act. If I have a particular hatred for homosexuals and start to incite people to physically attack homosexuals or call their homes with threatening messages, that IS a homophobic act. Is that clear?
One of the problems with this registry is that the definition of homophobic words or acts is so vague that I suppose a person in possession of a Bible could be found guilty. But that is not my main concern. I am primarily upset about the whole idea of a registry, apart from the people it is attempting to protect.
You may think that I am opposed to this registry because I hate homosexuals (I do not hate homosexuals by any means). I would be upset if the government sponsored a registry that was meant to record the words or actions that were deemed anti-Christian. I would not want to see Jews, Muslims, atheists, etc., added to a registry just because they spoke out against Christianity. Yes, in Canada we are a pluralistic society and we value people from different backgrounds. But I want people to have the freedom to speak out against Christianity, as long as they are not performing violent acts against Christians or taking away our rights.
I have the same feelings about homosexuals. If one’s religious tradition does not accept homosexuality as a valid lifestyle, they should have the freedom to state that. Freedom of speech should be protected. The only thing that should be prevented is violence against the person and the taking away of rights. This registry frightens me. It makes me wonder what kind of intolerant nation we will become, all in the name of tolerance.