Monday, 21 May 2012

NAACP Backs Obama, Calls Same-Sex Marriage a “Civil Right”

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The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the century-old group that has long been the official face of black civil rights in the United States, officially came out in favor of same-sex marriage May 19. The announcement was seen by political experts as a move designed to shore up support for President Obama in the black community, which has been at odds with the President over his aggressive efforts on behalf of the homosexual lobby. National surveys have consistently shown that a majority of black Americans oppose the legalization of homosexual marriage, and Obama’s announcement May 9 officially endorsing “marriage equality” forced the NAACP to take a firm stand behind their presidential candidate on the issue.

In an official press release the civil rights group announced that its board of directors came to the decision at a weekend retreat meeting, and framed the political move as a continuation of the NAACP’s “historic commitment to equal protection under the law.” Roslyn Brock, chairman of the group’s board of directors, insisted that the “mission of the NAACP has always been to ensure the political, social, and economic equality of all people. We have and will oppose efforts to codify discrimination into law.” The group’s CEO, Benjamin Jealous, added that “civil marriage is a civil right and a matter of civil law. The NAACP’s support for marriage equality is deeply rooted in the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution and equal protection of all people.”

The NAACP’s simple resolution mirrors that rhetoric, reading: “The NAACP Constitution affirmatively states our objective to ensure the ‘political, educational, social and economic equality’ of all people. Therefore, the NAACP has opposed and will continue to oppose any national, state, local policy or legislative initiative that seeks to codify discrimination or hatred into the law or to remove the Constitutional rights of LGBT [lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, and transgender] citizens. We support marriage equality consistent with equal protection under the law provided under the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution. Further, we strongly affirm the religious freedoms of all people as protected by the First Amendment.”

The pointed reference to “religious freedoms” was directed toward pastors and religious leaders within the black community, who have been vocal in their opposition to homosexual marriage — and to the efforts of homosexual activists to equate the campaign to legalize their lifestyle with the 1960s civil rights movement. “We are really tired of the homosexual community hijacking the civil rights movement,” William Owens, president of the Coalition of African-American Pastors (CAAP), told “I did not choose to be black and you did not choose to be white — and homosexuals make a choice to be homosexual. So why compare what we went through with your situation? It’s not the same thing; there’s no comparison.”

Following President Obama’s announcement that his thinking on same-sex marriage had “evolved” enough for him to fully embrace its legalization, the black pastors’ group released a statement declaring: “For activists, politicians, and now the highest office in the nation to link sexual behavior God calls sin to the righteous cause Martin Luther King gave his life for is abominable in and of itself. There is no civil right to do what God calls wrong.”

CAAP is not the only black group to express its opposition to same-sex marriage. Council Nedd II, presiding bishop of the Episcopal Missionary Church and a board member of the black conservative group Project 21, told OneNewsNow that “Scripture is clear from Genesis to Revelation: marriage is defined as a holy covenant blessed by God between a man and a woman. And the issue is that simple with me.”

Noted black Christian leader Bishop Harry Jackson Jr., pastor of Hope Christian Church in Baltimore, Maryland, said the actions of the NAACP and other black groups in backing Obama on the issue of same-sex marriage are deeply troubling. “The black community is in an adulterous relationship with President Obama,” Jackson told the Christian Post. “He is asking us to stray from the most basic tenets of Scripture — that marriage is an institution made by God for man and woman to become one and procreate. He’s telling us it’s fine to hold onto our beliefs but that it’s also okay to accept his stance on a position that goes against that core belief.”

Jackson said that Obama’s announcement merely made official what the black Christian community has always known. “I realized Obama was for same-sex marriage from the very beginning of his political career,” Jackson told the Christian Post. “Jeremiah Wright [Obama’s one-time pastor] has been performing same-sex ‘commitment services’ for years. Obama has been exposed to this belief for years and has demonstrated time and time again that he does not believe that homosexuality is a sin. Actions speak much louder than words.”

He added that with the announcement, “Obama laid down the gauntlet on black leaders. “The question we are being forced to address is, ‘Are you going to be black or be godly.’ ”

The CAAP’s William Owens told the Christian Post that his group “will be spending the next weeks and months visiting black churches, asking for support from pastors and their flocks to speak up against the media-generated view that gay marriage is a civil right.” He added that black pastors are asking President Obama to reconsider his position, and to “to stand with the black church, on the word of God and evolve again back to the common sense biblical view that marriage is the union of husband and wife.”

Photo: Roslyn M. Brock (left), Chairman of the NAACP National Board of Directors and Eugene J. Duffy, Chairman, NAACP Special Contribution Fund


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