Compiled By GayToday
Americans United for Separation of Church & State
|Washington, D.C.--A Florida legislator's claim that American law should conform to his
interpretation of the Bible is badly mistaken, according to Americans United
for Separation of Church and State.
Last week, Rep. Randy Ball (R-Titusville) issued a public letter defending a
Florida law that prohibits adoptions by gay men and lesbians. The letter, issued on
official state stationary, insisted that a "transcendent God" oversees the
world and "condemns homosexuality as an abomination." In follow-up emails,
Ball invoked the authority of Jesus Christ.
| Florida State Rep. Randy Ball
In a subsequent interview with the St. Petersburg Times, Ball said his
position on gay adoption is "religiously based" and that it is a
Commenting on his letter, he added, "This gives me a
chance to get the truth out, uncut. This country runs and operates on the
Judeo-Christian ethic that comes from the Bible."
Responded the Rev. Barry W. Lynn, Americans United executive director, "Rep.
Ball is badly mistaken. The United States is governed by the Constitution,
not religious law.
"This is America, not Iran," Lynn continued.
"Religious leaders have every right to speak out on public issues, but public officials have no right to
try to force their interpretation of the Bible on all people. Officials
should concern themselves with secular law, not theology."
Ball is increasingly serving as a Religious Right point man in the Florida
legislature. A graduate of Jerry Falwell's Liberty Baptist
Theological Seminary, Ball is working on the gay adoption issue in
cooperation with the Family Research Council, a political spinoff group of
James Dobson's Focus on the Family.
Ball appeared on ABC's Primetime program to counter talk-show host Rosie
O'Donnell's assertion that gay people make good parents and should be
allowed to adopt children.
Concluded AU's Lynn:
"America is an incredibly diverse nation, where people adhere to thousands of
different religious traditions and where many follow no spiritual path at all.
Related Stories from the GayToday Archive:
Lawmakers Who Banned Adoption Admit to Being Wrong
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Barry Lynn: Defeating the Religious Right
Americans United for the Seperation of Church & State
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"It would be disastrous if our elected officials tried to impose one religious viewpoint
on us through force of law. Public issues should be discussed in ways that do not inflame
religious tensions and provoke bigotry against minorities."