Rick Warren Strikes Again

What to make of this:

Warren claimed he supported Proposition 8 because of a free-speech issue -- asserting that "any pastor could be considered doing hate speech . . . if he shared his views that homosexuality wasn't the most natural way for relationships."

Well, yes, you could be considered as engaging in hate speech. But so what? As long as there are no criminal or legal penalties for religious speech - as guaranteed by the First Amendment - being called a hater is part of living in a democracy. I should say that I would not use the term "hate" for a principled theological defense of heterosexual normativity. And I have engaged very deeply with the arguments on those grounds. But fanning paranoia among Christians that somehow civil gay equality requires that they lose any free speech rights whatsoever is irresponsible, and presumably a conscious untruth.

Update: The relevant transcript can be found here. It's an absurdity, it seems to me, to argue, as Warren does, that civil equality in marriage violates anyone's free speech or could. If Rick Warren refuses to acknowledge my husband as my husband, fine. But my pointing this out is not a denial of his free speech in any way.

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