It’s Not About Marriage - It’s about Legalizing Religious Bias

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Metropolitan Community Churches of Wisconsin respond to the upcoming vote to write discrimination into the state constitution. Marriage rights, gay/lesbian, marriage equality.

Voters in Wisconsin are being asked to do something in November that they have never had to do before – actually write discrimination into the state constitution. Proponents of a harmful amendment designed to legally stigmatize the families of gay and lesbian families, have succeeded in pushing their religion-based agenda through the state legislature, forcing a public vote.

People of faith from across the state are speaking out against this measure. Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC) in Green Bay, Appleton and Milwaukee have been at the forefront of the struggle for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) people for over twenty years. MCC is the oldest and largest denomination primarily serving the gay community. The Rev. Jim Mitulski, Elder for MCC Region 2 which includes Wisconsin, noted: “MCC congregations across the United States have played key roles in raising awareness and defeating mean-spirited legislation. We base our opposition to this legislation in our Christian values, which say that Jesus would always denounce discrimination in all of its forms, especially when Christianity is used as a mask for bigotry.”

Not only would the marriage amendment limit legal recognition of adult relationships to one man and one woman. It would also:

  • restrict law enforcement from upholding domestic violence laws in instances where unmarried persons are involved
  • void domestic partner benefits offered by municipalities and local businesses
  • prevent long-term gay partners from having hospital visitation access to their partner
  • place the children of gay households in the position of losing medical coverage and other legal protections
  • use the constitution – a document designed to expand and protect liberty – as a document to create two classes of people in this state

“This is the same reasoning that was used to justify slavery, prevent women from voting and make interracial marriage illegal. It’s now being used to justify this latest example of religious extremists using prejudice to harm families in Wisconsin,” said Rev. Elaine Thomas, Pastor of Angels of Hope MCC.

People of good will must speak up against this use of our faith as a weapon to devastate the families of gay people in Wisconsin. Metropolitan Community Churches, both here in Wisconsin and around the world, urge fair-minded people to vote “No” on this amendment. Passing marriage bans will not rid the country of gay people.

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Rev. Elaine Thomas, Pastor
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