Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Kentucky Equality Federation Comments on Massachusetts Lawsuit Against DOMA

"Kentucky Equality Federation applauds the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for suing the U.S. government for intruding on states' rights with the 1996 federal Defense of Marriage Act," stated Kentucky Equality Federation President Jordan Palmer. "This is a step in the right direction, a state [instead of its citizens] has said enough is enough; we demand full liberty and equality for our citizens now."

The Commonwealth sued the U.S. government in federal court today.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Kentucky Equality Federation today condemned the allocation of $1.2 million dollars in federal funding to the University of the Cumberlands

Kentucky Equality Federation today condemned the allocation of $1.2 million dollars in federal funding to the University of the Cumberlands.

The funds will be used to help construct a health and wellness center for students, faculty and community members and a new science and technology building for the university. U.S. Representative Hal Rogers (R) requested a total of 4 million dollars for projects at the University of the Cumberlands.

"Kentucky Equality Federation remains opposed to the allocation of public funds to an institution that discriminates against a minority group," stated Kentucky Equality Federation President Jordan Palmer. "If all the citizens of the Commonwealth cannot enjoy the new facilities this money will bring, it must be challenged. Separation of Church and State must be maintained; funding a facility which will reject gay and lesbian people is unacceptable."

Palmer concluded, "Kentucky Equality Federation will investigate all available options with its legal counsel and urge the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky to do the same."

Halyn Roth, Kentucky Equality Federation's Regional Director for Southern Kentucky added, "The University of the Cumberlands is an institution of learning and is meant to inspire young minds to become the leaders of tomorrow, but with the backwards policies of the University leaders, they are indeed causing the downfall of progress as we know it."

In 2007 Kentucky Equality Federation co-sponsored the 2007 Soulforce/Equality Ride at the University of the Cumberlands. Dozens of gay and lesbian activists were arrested and community members held signs reading "You Will Be Judged," and "Repent Now," among others. Nick Herweck, now Kentucky Equality Federation's Treasurer spent most of the day directing representatives from Soulforce to the Whitley County Jail to post bond for those arrested.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Kentucky Equality Federation responds to the University of the Cumberlands

As requested by reporters, Kentucky Equality Federation today released the following statement regarding the University of Cumberlands rejecting assistance from the Broadway Baptist Church. 

The Broadway Baptist Church Chapel Choir, a high school group that has toured the nation and England on concert and mission trips, has been told that it is not welcome to perform and work in a Kentucky Baptist mission program.

The news came just before the group was to depart for its annual summer mission trip — and a week after the Southern Baptist Convention severed its ties with the Fort Worth church because of what leaders called a lenient stance on homosexuality.

The choir was informed by letter Monday that it was "uninvited" to participate in the Mountain Outreach program at the University of the Cumberlands in Williamsburg, Ky. Officials of the school, which is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, declined to comment Wednesday.


The United States and our Commonwealth was built on the concept of freedom of religion. I believe that people are free to choose and practice their own religious and spiritual beliefs in whatever way they choose so long as they do not receive government funding or benefits of any kind. Our founding fathers knew the consequences of mixing Church and State. I applaud the Broadway Baptist Church for realizing that you cannot discriminate against your fellow man or woman and disguise the hatred as ‘indifference of religious views.’

The only people who will lose are those at the University of the Cumberlands and the citizens of the Commonwealth since a group of people cannot participate in the school’s Mountain Outreach program, which builds houses for disadvantaged people in the region.

As a practicing Christian, I must leave you with the following passages as an individual, and not as president of Kentucky Equality Federation. I get so tired of various churches turning religion against the LGBTI community.

I accept all forms of religion that are based on love, and it is not my intention (or place) to force a religious belief on anyone, but many in the LGBTI community continue to believe that they cannot be religious because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, and that must be challenged because it simply isn't true. I'm sure the Broadway Baptist Church also hold the following passages close to their hearts :
  • John 4:20: If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? The scripture is not just talking about our natural brother, it is speaking about our brothers and sisters in Christ. That is a powerful statement, but the Word says it. We cannot just agree with some of God's Word. If we do not agree we are commanded to do it anyway, because we are God's Children.
  • Matthew 22:36-40: "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?" Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the greatest commandment, and the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hangeth the whole law, and the prophets.