Title: Maxim, SPCS, Conservative Correctness and Censorship Credit: Craig Young Comment Tuesday 26th October 2004 - 12:00pm1098745200 Article: 462 Rights
According to the Christian Right, feminist, LGBT and ethnic minority rights activists want to censor their opponents. But so do conservative Christians...including some of their Compass seminar guests. The Maxim Institute seems not to have done enough background checks on Greg Koukl, who will be one of its Compass seminar guests next January at its annual youth indoctrination camp at Auckland's Snells Beach. Koukl has written a little gem of an article on his website, originally one of his fundamentalist radio broadcasts, entitled "Should Libraries Promote Homosexuality?" In other words, what Koukl is saying is that libraries should act as censors of publically available information about controversial social issues, through only presenting their own slanted propaganda. Excuse me, isn't this exactly the same accusation that the Maxim Institute itself levels at others- the politics of ideological purity? Let's call this "conservative correctness." Unfortunately too, the Institute didn't tell the Society for Promotion of Community Standards. SPCS issued a histrionic media release yesterday which attacked Hon. Chris Carter, the Minister of Conservation, and a keynote speaker at the New Zealand Association of Rationalists and Humanists. SPCS is a pro-censorship organisation and regularly crusades against challenging adult film festival content, always losing in censorship tribunals and the courts. It has the unmitigated gall to accuse us of being enforcers of ideological purity, given the above? Oh, puh-lease! What does Mr Petrus call advocacy of library book censorship? SPCS ranted and raved about 'civil rights.' Yes, that's all very well, but in New Zealand, the Human Rights Act has protected lesbians, gay men and bisexuals from discrimination on the basis of employment, accomodation, goods and services since it was passed in 1993. Again, the Christian Right is tripping over its own jackboots. The Maxim Institute cited the Bill of Rights Act 1990 (amended 1993) and the Human Rights Act 1993 within its submission on the Civil Union and Relationship (Statutory References) Bills. So the United States is ridiculously backward compared to the rest of the Western world, apart from its satellite, Australia. So what? Then SPCS started whingeing about the origins of homosexuality and disputed the results of the recent New Zealand Herald Digipoll related to support and opposition to relationship recognition legislation. Big yawn. And by the way, if it is going to quote the last New Zealand census, could it please bother to cite it accurately? According to the 2001 New Zealand Census, the largest New Zealand religious group belongs to 'no stated religious category.' And what evidence does SPCS have that all Anglicans, Presbyterians, Catholics and Methodists oppose lesbian/gay relationship recognition? I would have thought that the existence of Christians for Civil Unions would lead one to dispute that allegation. It has none, whatsoever. Finally, it has the nerve to deny that fundamentalist Protestants and conservative Catholics are ringleaders of the campaign against LGBT relationship equality. This is ridiculous. It would be instructive to learn exactly how many submissions opposed to relationship recognition reform cited biblical proof texts, fundamentalist secondary literature, conservative Christian junk scientists like Reisman and Cameron, and cited US Christian Right pressure group website misinformation. Sorry, SPCS. If it oinks and tastes like bacon, it is probably a pig. And as for the Institute's little faux pas, what was that about ideological purity and 'correctness' again...? Craig Young - 26th October 2004    
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