In 2004 the Philadelphia 11 decided to be heard at a Gay Rights Rally. They carried signs conveying God’s Love, and preached to the homosexuals at the rally about the sin of the gay lifestyle. The group of Christians, for their actions, were arrested, jailed, charged with a “hate crime” for preaching the Gospel, and threatened with up to fifty years in jail for their thought crimes.
The law being used against them is HB 1493, and it states:
A PERSON COMMITS THE OFFENSE OF ETHNIC
INTIMIDATION IF, WITH MALICIOUS INTENTION TOWARD THE ACTUAL OR
PERCEIVED RACE, COLOR, RELIGION [OR], NATIONAL ORIGIN, ANCESTRY,
MENTAL OR PHYSICAL DISABILITY, SEXUAL ORIENTATION, GENDER OR
GENDER IDENTITY OF ANOTHER INDIVIDUAL OR GROUP OF INDIVIDUALS,
HE COMMITS AN OFFENSE UNDER ANY OTHER PROVISION OF THIS ARTICLE. . .
So the original decision against the Christians were that by stating Homosexuality is a sin, they were being “malicious” and were committing a hate crime. Since when is God’s Love, and His laws malicious intimidation?
The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania also disagrees that preaching the Gospel is somehow malicious intimidation. The court declared that the “hate crimes” laws used to jail the Philadelphia 11 in 2004 violated the state constitution, and “Preaching to homosexuals about the sin of sodomy should not be made a ‘thought crime’ in Pennsylvania or any other state.”
This is a small victory in a culture where politicians and the far left socialists are becoming increasingly hostile toward Christians.
I am still bothered, however, that the vote was 4-1. . . yes, there is actually one judge on that bench that believes being a Christian and proclaiming one’s faith should be made illegal.