Monday, June 23, 2008

Talking Point #2 , Right on Cue

Why hadn't the GAFCON leadership been prepped before the Press Conference on how to respond to the predictable a gay rights advocacy Talking Points?

The question from the gay rights advocate associating the conservative Anglicans with violence against gays and lesbians was a classic example of Talking Point #2 from Soul Force:
2. Historically, people's misinterpretation of the Bible has left a trail of suffering, bloodshed, and death.

As Iain Baxter, Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement phrased it:
One of the things in “The Way, the Truth and the Life,” one of the key points that you’ve written is to “prepare for an Anglican future in which the Gospel is uncompromised and Christ-centred” But the gospel is already compromised by bishops who support the jailing of lesbian and gay people throughout Africa, which then leads to rape, which leads to torture of people and yet they are not prepared to speak out against this and change the laws in their countries.

The question requires a three part response that communicates the Gospel but does not cede that unverified claims of violence have occurred:
1)immediately and forcefully condemn violence,
2) ask for further information regarding the specific accusations of violence or violent language,
3) conditionally condemn the unverified violence or violent speech claimed.

In this case, African bishops can condemn violence in prisons without condemning prison sentences for homosexual behavior. The gay rights advocate question made the unsubstantiated claim that jailing people inevitably leads to rape which leads to torture.

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