Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Black Clergymen Come Out Against Gay Marriage
(FOXNews.com, Tuesday, March 23, 2004)

"ATLANTA — More than two dozen black pastors added their voice to the critics of same-sex marriage (search), attempting to distance the civil rights (search) struggle from the gay rights movement and defending marriage as a union between a man and a woman.

"When the homosexual compares himself to the black community, he doesn't know what suffering is," said the Rev. Clarence James, an African-American studies professor at Temple University (search).

Jones and 29 pastors rallied late Monday with their supporters at an Atlanta-area church where they signed a declaration outlining their beliefs on marriage and religion.

The declaration is meant to pressure state representatives to approve a constitutional ban on gay marriages, which will be considered again by the Georgia House as soon as this week.

The declaration, to be presented to state leaders Wednesday or Thursday, says same-sex marriage is not a civil right, and marriage between a man and a woman is important because it's necessary for the upbringing of children.

"To equate a lifestyle choice to racism demeans the work of the entire civil rights movement," the statement said. "People are free in our nation to pursue relationships as they choose. To redefine marriage, however, to suit the preference of those choosing alternative lifestyles is wrong." ...

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