LGBTQ Advocates Condemn Pope Francis’ Comments on the Issuance of Marriage Licenses to Same-Sex Couples



Washington, DC, September 28, 2015—The National LGBTQ Task Force is condemning Pope Francis’ endorsement of the “right” of government officials to ignore laws if they believe they are wrong, such as in the case of the Kentucky clerk who refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. The pontiff made his comments in a media interview on his plane journey back to Rome.

“As a Catholic, it’s very disappointing that Pope Francis doesn’t seem to understand that politicians and government officials using religion as an excuse to impose their prejudices on the public is profoundly wrong. That’s why we separate church and state in the United States. World history is replete with examples of Catholics being discriminated against—such as in Northern Ireland where in the 1960s and 1970s Catholic families were routinely refused public housing by Protestant government officials. Discrimination was wrong then and it’s wrong today when imposed by politicians on LGBTQ same-sex couples who have a legal right to be issued with a marriage license. Our faith should liberate—not discriminate. Religious liberty is a cherished right but government officials should not be allowed to cherry pick the laws they want to follow and the ones they want to ignore,” said Russell Roybal, Deputy Executive Director, National LGBTQ Task Force.

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