CFI has been involved in the Pride festivities for a while now and while I support gay rights generally, sometimes I find the rhetoric of Pride worrisome. On the one hand, I hear it’s about expressing oneself, but to a certain degree it is also about supporting the cause, in an acceptable fashion.
One problem area that has arisen, involves a group that is protesting ‘Israeli apartheid‘.
Now regardless of which side you come down on with regards to Israel and the Palestinian issue, one has to ask, is this seemingly unrelated, and volatile issue, a distraction from supporting the cause, or is it part of that same freedom of expression that Pride celebrates?
Then, of course, there is this from Wisconsin.
Johnson’s lawsuit said he has distributed Bibles at the annual event since 1995 and had no problems until 2009, when the organization refused to rent him a booth after an exchange about his views on homosexuality.
On Thursday, the U.S. Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals granted a temporary injunction that allowed Johnson full access to the park Sunday, said his attorney, Jonathan Scruggs of the Alliance Defense Fund of Memphis, which defends religious liberties. Scruggs said the appeal will be argued in federal court to determine whether Johnson has access to future Pride Festivals.
I should note, I’m not belittling this issue. I think it serious. In Ireland when Orangemen ‘parade’ through catholic neighborhoods, it’s a protest, a provocation and its part of a tradition that often involves bloodshed. Balancing freedom and maintaining public order can be very difficult indeed. And then of course, there is always the question of when protest becomes harassment.