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Church flyer predicts dire consequences if Indiana gay marriage amendment fails

Friday, December 13, 2013

INDIANAPOLIS — A prominent Indiana conservative group has distributed a flyer to churches making dire predictions if a state constitutional amendment banning gay marriage isn’t adopted.

The Sunday bulletin insert from Advance America warns that allowing same-sex marriages could lead to ministers facing hate-crime charges for preaching against homosexuality and cross-dressing men being allowed in women’s restrooms, The Indianapolis Star reported.

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The proposed amendment is expected be a major topic during the legislative session that starts next month.

Some legal experts and gay-rights supporters say Advance America is using isolated examples or misconceptions as scare tactics.

Advance America executive director Eric Miller, who is a high-profile lobbyist at the Statehouse on social conservative issues, said Friday the flyer points out changes that gay-rights activists are pushing for around the country, including the legalization of same-sex marriages.

“Part of the homosexual agenda is to silence and intimate the church and pastors from preaching what the Bible says about marriage between a man and a woman,” Miller told The Associated Press.

Curt Smith, president of the conservative Indiana Family Institute, said Advance America’s flyer makes reasonable claims about potential harms to religious freedom if the state’s current law banning gay marriages was to be overturned in court.

“The issues and the ideas that are presented are fair,” Smith said. “They are the logical consequences of this kind of policy.”

Other gay marriage dangers included in the flyer are that the government could force businesses such as florists and caterers to participate in same-sex weddings, and schools would be required to teach children that homosexual marriages are normal and acceptable.

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Lambda Legal, an advocate for gay rights, says such arguments are “sadly familiar” from marriage debates nationwide.

“As each state, one by one, opens marriage to same-sex couples, it should be increasingly obvious that these claims are just alarmist,” said Jennifer Pizer, the New York-based group’s legal and policy director.

Advance America, which says it has more than 3,700 member churches statewide, doesn’t know how many churches have distributed the flyer, Miller said.

Jennifer Drobac, a family law professor at Indiana University’s McKinney School of Law, said the flyer makes claims with little basis in reality.

“This is just ludicrous,” she said. “This is just promulgating panic — and misinformed panic.”

Freedom Indiana, the coalition working to defeat the amendment, has the support of numerous Republican and Democratic mayors in Indiana and prominent institutions such as Eli Lilly and Co., the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce and Indiana University.

Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma and Senate President Pro-Tem David Long, both Republicans, have said they expect the Legislature will vote during its upcoming session on whether to put the amendment on the November 2014 ballot.

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87 more reader comments:

  1. Yeah, gay people get married. OOOOOOooooo

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 9:48pm
  2. churches using scare tactics

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 9:51pm
  3. Tell this group………it’s all about love! And find another cause that is worth their time to contribute to!

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 9:51pm
  4. IF they can predict what happens if gays get married why couldnt they also predict every natural disaster this past year planet wide? Why arent they lottery winners if there so comfy with god they know all he/she knows? If I could look into the future you better believe I’d be wining Mega Lotto tonight.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 9:53pm
  5. Bastard Christians Hate mongers’ minute of fame.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 9:55pm
  6. please dont think they represent all of us smh

    Replied on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:12pm
  7. Some of us actually try not to, but everyday there's yet another story and yet another example of it. The "christian right" is neither one, but it IS it's own worst enemy, and should be every true Christians enemy as well.

    Replied on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 1:20am
  8. they bitch moan and complain about us, yet we are not the ones that drove the divorce rate to over 50%…..

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 9:55pm
  9. Have faith. There's always a chance that Indiana will burn down.

    Replied on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 4:10am
  10. Faith is what we don't need right now, instead of burning the problem it's better to solve it.

    Replied on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 5:58am
  11. these people are an embarrassment to me as a Christian.....I agree with Neil Morris.

    Replied on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 10:07am
  12. It’s endlessly fascinating that these hate groups list the reasons for their anger at not being able to discriminate against other people. It would be funny if it weren’t so pathetic.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 9:58pm
  13. What idiots. If legalizing gay marriage allows cross dressers to enter the opposite sexs’ bathroom then that means that hetero marriage allows couples in to the same bathroom. Which makes no sense. Legalizing gay marriage wouldn’t make preachers criminals of hate. How is preaching against something a hate crime when there would be no lgbtq in the congregation to be offended. Idiots. All idiots. Tisk tisk tisk

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 9:58pm
  14. I absolutely hate living in this backward right wing bible thumping state. Lesbian atheist and proud to admit both.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:00pm
  15. Are they predicting gay weddings?

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:03pm
  16. Christians should find a way to alter the world through love not hate or fear. #shame

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:07pm
  17. Change is coming…move with it or get run over lol

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:09pm
  18. 1. There is no god.
    2. Laws made because of religion are ridiculous, and show just how little intelligence some people have.
    3. Homosexuality and gay marriage are normal, and should be taught to kids at an early age.

    Atheist & bisexual, and proud of it. Fuck Christians.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:09pm
  19. “If we don’t force everybody to do what we say and believe what we believe, the world will end!”

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:12pm
  20. Wasting their energies on this instead of helping the destitute and homeless.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:18pm
  21. It’s sad they float across seas to get out of one religion they couldn’t handle to form America and can’t handle it still something wrong with there system not mine god loves all he didn’t say those white people are the choosing ones he said for everyone believe in me but then again there taking every fear in the bible targeting any kind of form of movement goes on but lets face it my skeletons in my closet is not enough for some of them they are so over flowing of lies untruth story’s but again they never understand a law sure they have freedom of speech but does not mean we have to listen to the shit.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:20pm
  22. I say burn their church down.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:23pm
  23. More Christian nonsense. Can we start feeding them to the lions again?

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:31pm
  24. I'm Christian, but I'm for some old-fashioned entertainment like that.

    Replied on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:43pm
  25. I suggested that Michael. So far, I haven't heard back

    Replied on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 4:12am
  26. Come to think of it, that really would be a boost for employment. I could finally get a job! As a gladiator.

    Replied on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 4:13am
  27. Why can’t Christians just shut up and fallow their Christ? Respect they neighbor

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:44pm
  28. I’m a proud pansexual, Hoosier, atheist and supporter of equal rights for everyone.

    That being said, I’m disgusted at how people here are acting. “Feed them to the lions”? “Burn their church down”? Not all Christians are this horrible. The North United Methodist Church of Indy, in fact, has joined proudly with Freedom Indiana in standing up against HJR-6. These scared, confused flyer-distributors are the zealots; they’re the ones dedicated to dehumanizing and demonizing us and making everyone who doesn’t think like them look like heathens and perverts and monsters out to harm their children and steal their Bibles from their trembling hands. So for the love of Pete, stop making them feel like they’re right!! Calling for the death of “bastard Christians” and the burning of their meetinghouses isn’t going to make them think, “Hey, maybe they really are just a loving, respectful bunch!” Be kind, even if they don’t deserve it. Don’t stoop to their level of hatred and anger. Be the good you want them to see in you. If we reinforce their views of us as being hateful and out to get them, we may as well be on their side in this fight.

    I love my home state, even if it doesn’t appear to be loving me back legislatively. There have been so many people and groups from all walks of life coming out strongly against HJR-6. There is bipartisan support from politicians and universities and businesses and churches and countless individuals who know that all Hoosiers -past, present and future- are valuable. Don’t let this bad apple ruin the bunch, and don’t indulge it by allowing it to get to you. And certainly don’t be the bad guys they want us to be.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:44pm
  29. exactly

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:45pm
  30. meantime those hypocrites can screw around on eachother commiting adultry but damn if a loving committed gay couple get married.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:46pm
  31. jesus said nothing about gays

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:46pm
  32. he did however emit love and understanding for your neighbor

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:47pm
  33. Do the consequences include mass suicide?

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 10:54pm
  34. Blah blah blah blah….look it’s happening ok….

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:01pm
  35. These false Christians do not read their Bible where Jesus Christ said to NOT judge one another.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:11pm
  36. God is sending them warnings about their interactions with gays because he hears the Cry’s of the hurting and he knows about the hatred and malice against them he sees the injustice against people just because of their sexual orientation and he is pressing in the hearts of these churchy people but they are hearing through a veil they harbor more hated in their hearts than they can even fathom that is evident because they think they are doing nothing wrong by justifying themselves and using their idea of God and his words. But when I read that book and I prayed my prayers and I sought a God of understanding he told me not to judge people for their sexual orientation and and not to live in fear like these kinds of misguided churchy people do. I would follow no god that would reject fellow human beings for being who and what they are and to this day I do not believe the bible says that anyone has the right to justify himself but that it is only God WHO CAN JUDGE. Sincerely, someone who actually bothered to seek the understandings and not justifications.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:13pm
  37. Bravo, my friend! Well said!

    Replied on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 10:10am
  38. WTF? Read the stupid bible, never said anything about gays

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:16pm
  39. All about control…

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:30pm
  40. Well the bible does call for our murder sadly.

    But i know Christians who respect me for being bi no hate or cruelty. They’re true Christians.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:47pm
  41. Let’s see. None of the other countries across this planet or any of the states in this nation have imploded, so this ‘warning’ is as important as the fact that there is a little dirt under my thumbnail.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:48pm
  42. Because of course, Jesus was a Hoosier?? lmao

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:52pm
  43. Kind of like the dire consequences that were supposed to happen every single time the Christian right warned us about something? Waiting for Godot…

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:54pm
  44. Ahhahahahaaaaaaa chucking a tanty cause you might not get your way how pathetic. That money you spent on flyers could have went on feeding the homeless you two face dogs.

    Posted on Friday, December 13, 2013 at 11:55pm
  45. Well if this is true how bout we let us gays get married and see if this happens.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 12:14am
  46. Boo fricken hiss, they can go piss and moan on their own dam time. MARRIAGE EQUALITY FOR ALL, DON’T LIKE IT THEN GO SUCK AN EGG!!!!

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 12:30am
  47. When will xhurchs learn their horror threats are just fairy tales and lies

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 12:51am
  48. Ive survived Y2K, 2012, and the every rapture prediction to date. I think it’s safe to say that we are gonna be fine.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 12:58am
  49. I love how when they are told that they cannot use THEIR religious beliefs to discriminate or force their beliefs on others, they scream discrimination.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 12:59am
  50. Indiana is so full of shit…

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 1:11am
  51. Gee, I must have missed all the awful stuff happening in Calif.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 1:25am
  52. Funny.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 1:38am
  53. Because it’s sad.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 1:38am
  54. That’s funny…nothing has happened in Massachusetts….no wonder no one wants to go to church anymore….ugh.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 1:42am
  55. My, my, my…Such hate and venom from a “religious” organization supposedly “following” the teachings of a man who taught LOVE.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 1:53am
  56. We are fighting hard against this fear-mongering.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 1:55am
  57. Another group of chicken littles…… When will these folks realize there is no “god” “up there” whose waiting to destroy the world because a minority group is given the same rights as the majority.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 2:05am
  58. These types of churches are not created for christianity…. They are created for ignorant and hate-filled people to find each other easily, and spread their ignorance and hate …

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 2:10am
  59. Where is Indiana?

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 2:45am
  60. Oh, the Church of Chicken LIttle is at it again….well everyone, that trick has been done before and the sky NEVER falls Sorry Fundies….next trick.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 3:08am
  61. There’s no accounting for stupidity..

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 4:08am
  62. Indiana. A nice place to have a Klan rally.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 4:10am
  63. I believe in equal rights for everyone and if gay people want to get married then they should have that right no matter what and I will continue to support them and my family members always.these church’s need learn about respect,love,accepting people for who they are not to judge them and let be happy with who ever they want to be with

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 4:14am
  64. Blah blah blah “the sky is falling”, oh “dire consequences” like the consequences that happened in the last 16 states- oh, there were none, dipshits.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 4:47am
  65. Why the hell is it always Indiana?

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 5:26am
  66. they can go to hell

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 5:36am
  67. Good for them

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 6:02am
  68. They can shove their “dire consequences” up their ass!!

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 6:11am
  69. This is so embarrassing to see as a Hoosier. If the rest of the country could see our huge & awesome pride celebration, I hope it would slightly alter their perception that Indiana is full of bigots.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 9:50am
  70. I just wish churches started focusing on important matters like poverty rather than interfering with individual person’s love affair. As long as people love each other and are kind to each other ANDddddd give loving homes to children, that should matter the most. I support gay marriage, equality and urge all of us to be kind to each other.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 10:09am
  71. Haters and their frustrated scare tactics can go FUCK THEMSELVES.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 1:55pm
  72. Remember, these morons also believe they are going to be picked up by a space ship, or get their own planet to run, or have a bevy of 72 virgins, or comeback as Ethel Mertz, etc., etc., etc. I wouldn’t put much faith in any “predictions” they are trying to make.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 2:23pm
  73. out of their 4 points they were trying to make - 1. I don't recall any lessons in school about marriage and gender - if we had it, how effective was it? Joe doesn't remember anything from his school here in Indiana, either. That shoots down #1. 2. I don't think that the pastor preaching about homosexuality would not fall under the first amendment to be sued or fined, unless he/she advocated violence or something else that would result in a hate crime. #2 down. 3. gender identity for bathrooms/dressing rooms - what does that have to do with marriage? Nothing. #3 down.... and finally, 4. businesses fined and sued? Fined? I doubt it. Sued? Any business gets sued for every other thing these days anyway. A truly "Christian" business would not discriminate against clients, and wouldn't be based in hate. So there goes #4. To this boob who wrote and is pushing this dreck - PFPBBLT! :P

    Replied on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 6:30pm
  74. oh the religious reich bitch moan and complain. then make up lies to gain th fear hold. screw them and their suicidal demi god Zombie Jesus.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 2:38pm
  75. I hope that you live by the Bible,,which also says that women are servants to men..cannot have jobs and cannot preach…JUDGE NOT!!!!!

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 3:58pm
  76. The thing that was left out is that the sky will fall. OMG the sky is going to fall!

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 5:08pm
  77. Idiocy strikes again

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 5:17pm
  78. I left Indiana for California over 50 years ago and have never looked back.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 7:43pm
  79. Do they think that people don’t read the news? Absolutely NOTHING happens when there is marriage equality except more happy people.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 8:30pm
  80. Well, sure, the other states and countries to get marriage equality certainly have suffered. NOT.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 9:07pm
  81. Only an idiot would believe this crap.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 9:24pm
  82. can we construct a headline that is much more accurate? “predicts dire consequences?” you mean to say these groups implement fear mongering concepts.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 9:55pm
  83. This just proves how ignorant and ridiculous some religious groups can be.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 10:39pm
  84. In the 50′s, Indiana didn’t want black students to parade through Monument Circle (Central Indianapolis) when they won major sports events. The right wing nut hub headquarters is just off MC. Speaking of the city, pretty much all the black kids going to high school went to one school. Being north of the Mason-Dixon doesn’t mean progressive.

    Posted on Saturday, December 14, 2013 at 11:38pm
  85. Whatever. Shit they have dirt roads. Blacktop only on the highways and NASCAR. Yeah I’m really concerned about their opinion.

    Posted on Sunday, December 15, 2013 at 3:48am
  86. Typical Hypochristians. Fail to realize that not everyone believes in their OPutlandish book of Lies

    Posted on Sunday, December 15, 2013 at 5:22am
  87. Typical Hypochristians. Fail to realize that not everyone believes in their Outlandish book of Lies

    Posted on Sunday, December 15, 2013 at 5:22am