Down to the Wire: Just $4,822 left to match to win our Challenge Grant. Your gift will still be doubled!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

US judge rules that pastor may be sued for opposition to homosexuality in Uganda

Catholic World News - August 16, 2013

Citing the Alien Tort Statute, which became law in 1789, a US district judge has ruled that a Ugandan umbrella LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex) organization may sue an American evangelical pastor in US court for allegedly committing “crimes against humanity.”

The Alien Tort Statute (ATS) permits foreign citizens to sue US citizens in US courts for actions “committed in violation of the law of nations or a treaty of the United States.”

According to the court decision, Scott Lively, a Massachusetts pastor, reportedly traveled to Uganda, spoke out against homosexuality, linked homosexuality to pornography and pedophilia, and assisted government officials with the drafting of anti-homosexuality legislation.

“Widespread, systematic persecution of LGBTI people constitutes a crime against humanity that unquestionably violates international norms,” ruled Judge Michael Posner, a Clinton appointee. “Aiding and abetting in the commission of a crime against humanity is one of the limited group of international law violations for which the ATS furnishes jurisdiction.”

“The argument that international norms do not bar systematic persecution of LGBTI people, because -- in contrast to racial, ethnic or religious minorities -- they are not explicitly mentioned is unpersuasive,” Judge Posner continued. “Even a glance at the history of treatment of gays and lesbians makes it clear that the discrimination suffered by them is on a par with the treatment meted out to other groups, defined by religion, race, or some other accepted characteristic.”

“The critical feature that elevates a campaign of persecution to a crime against humanity is its expression as a widespread, systematic attack on the targeted community,” he added. “The allegations feature [Lively’s] active involvement in well orchestrated initiatives by legislative and executive branch officials and powerful private parties in Uganda, including elements of the media, to intimidate LGBTI people and to deprive them of their fundamental human rights to freedom of expression, life, liberty, and property … Numerous authorities confirm that a cause of action exists under international law for aiding and abetting a crime against humanity.”

“He generated and distributed propaganda that falsely vilified the targeted community to inflame public hatred against it,” the judge continued. The Uganda LBGTI umbrella organization “has set out plausibly that [Lively] worked with associates within Uganda to coordinate, implement, and legitimate ‘strategies to dehumanize, demonize, silence, and further criminalize the [Ugandan] LGBTI community.’”

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Our Fall Campaign
Progress toward our year-end goal ($52,302 to go):
$150,000.00 $97,698.13
35% 65%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 2 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Aug. 16, 2013 5:53 PM ET USA

    This is an astonishing breach of faith, and just another example of why we must be convinced that anti-Christian bias is breaking out and will lead to outright persecution.

  • Posted by: Gil125 - Aug. 16, 2013 3:35 PM ET USA

    Good. His Honor has read the treaty of 1789. Has he also read the First Amendment to the Constitution of 1791?

Fall 2014 Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

The gift of orthodoxy: A mercy and a challenge to mercy November 26
Getting Marriage Right November 25
O Earthly Lord, vouchsafe to us high speed Internet. November 25
No 'Francis effect' in Strasbourg November 25
What Pope Francis told European Parliament, and what Pope John Paul II said November 25

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Europe seems 'elderly and haggard' CWN - November 25