Five Republican members of Congress penned a letter to Ugandan President Yoweri Mouseveni urging him to do everything within his constitutional authority to stop legislation that would criminalize homosexuality, sometimes under the penalty of death, from being enacted in Uganda. The signatories, Representatives Chris Smith, Frank Wolf, Joe Pitts, Trent Franks and Anh “Joseph” Cao are conservative, members of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission and self-proclaimed “men of faith.”
What is striking is that the letter invokes the Manhattan Declaration, which is a statement of religious principles by three prominent Christian leaders, Charles Colson, Robert George, and Timothy George. Among other things, the Declaration calls homosexuality immoral and includes a long explanation of why homosexuals should be denied the right to marry.
The letter to Mouseveni states, “As Members of Congress and as men of faith, we support the principles set forth in the declaration and are thankful for the principled postion of these faith leaders on a host of issues, from the sanctity of lide for the unborn and others, to religious freedom, to human dignity, to the belief that marriage is an institution between one man and one woman.” However, they say that their faith also compels them to oppose this legislation, which is antithetical to a “foundational Christian belief in the inherent dignity and worth of all men and women.”
Given the utter depravity of the proposed Ugandan legislation these members of congress should be applauded for taking a stand. I also don’t doubt the sincerity of the beliefs of these members of Congress. Still, I can’t help but notice incongruity of invoking a document that calls homosexuality immoral to oppose an action that could be considered a manifestation (albeit an extreme one) of that attitude.