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Christians to blame for LGBT discrimination

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​Campaigners say religion routinely discriminates against LGBT people

Campaigners calling for a more secular Scotland have slammed Christians who actively campaign against LGBT rights.

It comes as Nicola Sturgeon this week pardoned thousands of gay and bisexual men who were subject to prosecution due to archaic laws.

The Scottish Secular Society said it welcomed the move but emphasised that religion played a key role in discrimination against gay men in Scotland in the late 20th century.

The charity says Christians still actively campaign against LGBT people and view recent moves towards full equality as part of an agenda to undermine religious faith and traditional values.

These views are the same views shared by far-right extremists across the world, said the charity.

A Scottish Secular Society spokesman said: “Aside from this extreme fringe, there is often a deafening silence from major churches and their members on LGBT equality.

“This is best demonstrated by the religious reaction to the Time for Inclusive Education Campaign, which advocates the inclusion of LGBT issues within the curriculum and a more robust approach to homophobic bullying.

“As we reflect on how far Scottish society has come, it is imperative that more liberal voices within Scottish Christianity continue to be heard in support of completing this journey.”

Sturgeon’s bill offers an unqualified apology to those stigmatised and humiliated by prosecutions.

She said full equality for gay and bisexual men only came into law in Scotland as late as 2001, when the age of consent was finally lowered to 16, the same age as for heterosexuals, two years after the first elections to the devolved parliament.

“Within the lifetime of this parliament, this nation’s laws created suffering and perpetrated injustice,” Sturgeon told MSPs. “The legislation we have published addresses this injustice.”