Following the Freethinker magazine exposing that the Rev Paul Shinners, owner of Cornerstones cafe in St Neots near Cambridge and head of an organisation called Passion for Souls had attended a Christian rally in Uganda on December 31 where he joined other Christian fundamentalists in calling on the Ugandan Government to speed up the process for passing the controversial Kill the Gays bill, the Rev Shinners has been warned he might face being banned from entering the USA because of his hateful rhetoric towards homosexuals.
After reading the Freethinker report, Melanie Nathan, who serves on the Marin Human Rights Commission in California wrote the following letter to Shinners:
“I note your purposeful quest in supporting the Ugandan Kill the Gays’ Bill. It just strikes me as horrific that someone who purports to be a man of God would openly incite such violence on foreign soil. You ought to know better.
“Mr Shinners, with all due respect, your support and call for passage of legislation that would kill people marks you as an accessory to the potential genocide that is likely to follow, not to mention the inciting of the current persecution that is already occurring.
“Gay people in Uganda are being persecuted, assaulted and tortured as we speak because of this rhetoric that you so freely hurl in your discourse and unfortunately in the name of Christianity. I do not believe that most Christians think in this fundamentalist way and most would be shocked at how you tout the name of Jesus with such vitriol and violent intent.
“Mr Shinners, you are free to practice your religion and to preach to your heart’s content. No one will ever dispute that nor take that away from you. However, you are not free to preach harm and violence against others and that is what you have done and are continuing to do …
“You have no right to preach about legislation that is against basic human rights standards and decency as expected of a British citizen either in his own country or around the globe.”
“I plan to explore with UK Justice Department. whether or not there is legislation similar to the US Alien Tort Act, under which we are currently suing Pastor Scott Lively in the US for his purposeful persecution of Ugandans on African soil, when he preached calling for their demise.
“In essence you have done the same. Your name will also be submitted to the list of unwelcome gay haters in the USA, to join the likes of David Bahati, Martin Ssempa and others and I believe you may find that you will not be allowed travel privileges into the USA in the future.
“To go to another country to tell them to kill people based on their sexuality is not what God wants by anyone’s religious standards and you have taken it too far. I hope that you will find it in your heart to look at what you have done and to issue an apology to the LGBTI community of Uganda as well as to provide a written retraction of your support for the Bill. If you do I would be glad to publish it in a prominent publication. In the meantime this letter to you sir, will be made public.”
George Broadhead, of the UK gay Humanist charity, the Pink Triangle Trust, said:
“I am appalled that a Christian charity in the UK, which claims to have been established “to love the Father, love one another, love our neighbour, and even to love our enemy” should be a hub of hatred towards gay people. Cornerstone even published a poster ahead of the Uganda event, which pictured Shinners among the event’s leading hate-mongers”.
“It is even more appalling that a UK-based organisation should attempt, through the direct efforts of its owner to interfere with the democratic processes of a foreign country”.
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