The Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association (GALHA) welcomes the finding of an Ipsos Mori poll that 61% of self-identifying Christians in Britain believe that “Homosexuals should have the same legal rights in all aspects of their lives as heterosexuals”, compared to only 21% who disagree. The poll also showed that while 28% of Christians disapproved of same sex relationships, 46% did not.
GALHA Chair Adam Knowles commented:
“This poll confirms what we have long suspected: that many of the Christians that we know as friends, family, neighbours and colleagues are not anti-gay, and have moved on from many of the positions of the church leadership.
“Those who try to hide behind “religious freedom” to justify anti-gay positions, whether it comes to employment opportunities, to the suppose “right” to turn away gay customers, or to defending anti-gay indoctrination in schools, are not only setting themselves against the equal rights of gay people, but are contradicting the convictions of many Christians, in some cases a majority of Christians.”
“As humanists we have always welcomed the chance to make common cause with those of all religions and none who share our goals of full equality, and the chance of happiness and fulfilment for all citizens.
“We also fully accept the right of religious believers to defend and advocate their beliefs, even where we find some of those beliefs to be morally wrong – as in in the objections that some religious leaders have raised to to Civil Partnerships and Marriage Equality. What we do not accept is that these views should have any special privilege, or be treated with any particular deference just because they claim a religious justification.
“Our aim, which we believe society is moving towards is one where all citizens, whatever their beliefs, enjoy the same freedom to express their beliefs in actions and in words, provided that this does not harm others.”