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Thursday, January 21, 2010
CNSNews.com - Hate-Crimes Law Named No.1 Anti-Christian Act of 2009
"(CNSNews.com) - The new federal hate crimes law has all the potential to be a major attack on religious liberty and freedom of speech, according to top religious liberty attorneys. The law was chosen the number one anti-Christian act of 2009 by the Christian Anti-Defamation League. Attorneys who defend religious rights agree: The recently enacted hate-crimes law is a threat to religious liberty. “The very fact that this law elevates ‘sexual orientation’ and ‘gender identity’ to the same protected status as race – that in and of itself is a cataclysmic shift in policy,” said Mathew Staver, president of the religious liberty law firm Liberty Counsel and dean of the Liberty University Law School. “That will have a ripple effect far beyond the specific words of this bill,” he added. “That is contrary to our Judeo-Christian heritage and beliefs, far beyond any particular disclaimer that it is not going to affect speech.” Erik Stanley, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund, which is based in Scottsdale, Ariz., said the hate-crimes law is not about punishing crimes. It’s about punishing beliefs and ideas. “It is actually a thought-crimes law,” Stanley said. “There is no difference between, say, an assault that is already punishable, and an assault that is punishable as a hate crime, other than the belief of the perpetrator.” "