Religious leader’s harmful op-ed wrong on religion and science fronts
WASHINGTON – The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), the nation’s largest civil rights organization dedicated to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality, on August 16th renounced an anti-transgender op-ed by Russell D. Moore, president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. The op-ed, which stems from California AB 1266, legislation ensuring transgender students in California’s schools are treated fairly, says being transgender is “a revolt against God’s lordship, and against the picture of the gospel that God had embedded in the creation.” This assertion is based on neither scripture nor science.
“Scripture compels us to understand one another and to grow. Mr. Moore’s words seek only to silence and further ignorance and discrimination against transgender people,” said Dr. Sharon Groves, director of the HRC Religion and Faith Program. “Transgender people are part of every faith community, from the clergy to the congregation. Mr. Moore does not speak for me, as a person of devout faith, nor does he speak for so many LGBT people and our allies.” [pullquote]The op-ed, which stems from California AB 1266, legislation ensuring transgender students in California’s schools are treated fairly, says being transgender is “a revolt against God’s lordship, and against the picture of the gospel that God had embedded in the creation.”[/pullquote]
Preeminent mainstream mental health and medical associations have issued strong policy statements advocating for transgender people. Last year, the American Psychiatric Association affirmed its commitment to transgender people and in support of access to care and civil rights for transgender individuals.
“Mr. Moore speaks neither for all people of faith nor does he speak for health experts,” said Jeff Krehely, vice president of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. “His words further ignorance and discrimination and add a burden to those already struggling with transgender bias.”
HRC encourages young Baptists who are struggling with their gender identity to contact the Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists (AWAB) for resources on the church and sexuality and gender identity. AWAB’s website is www.wabaptists.org.
The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. By inspiring and engaging all Americans, HRC strives to end discrimination against LGBT citizens and realize a nation that achieves fundamental fairness and equality for all.
[From a News Release]