Not Christian to reject gay rights

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 19 January, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 19 January, 2013, 2:08am

When an angry mob was going to execute a woman caught in the act of adultery, Jesus taught them love and forgiveness by saying, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone".

Though I am not a Christian, I am always touched by this story and the message it conveys. Regrettably, it seems that many Christians in Hong Kong have forgotten the teachings of Christ. They stubbornly oppose a sexual orientation discrimination ordinance being brought into force in Hong Kong and will not even tolerate public consultation on such a law. Citing the Bible, they claim that orientation other than heterosexuality is sinful and accuse the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual (LGBT) rights groups of discriminating against their religious beliefs.

The purpose of a consultation process is to enable all stakeholders to express their views. What these Christians are doing is shutting a channel of communication and any prospect of reconciliation. I suspect that they think a consultation process is redundant because their views about the sinfulness of those who are not heterosexual are set in stone. It disappoints me that I have to defend the secular values of Hong Kong society.

In some countries where a religion dominates the society, the only accepted truth is that enshrined in the religion's codes and, in some cases, that means no other code will be tolerated. In a secular society like Hong Kong, the protection of individual freedoms and rights is respected. We have a multicultural society where anyone can express their views. People from the LGBT community should not be put off by the views of some Christian groups and should continue to fight for their rights and ask to be treated with respect.

I recognise that everyone, including Christian organisations, has the right to say what they think about this proposed ordinance.

Unfortunately, some of them, instead of seeking to share [and exchange] opinions, have taken a stubborn stand and do not want any discussion on the issue. They are failing to understand how secular society in Hong Kong operates and this shows a lack of respect even for religious freedom as they want to impose the truth as they see it as Christians.

Portraying themselves as victims, they come across as being too paranoid to enter into a discussion with members of the LGBT community.

Patrick Cheng, Tai Po