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When Defending Marriage is Called Hate Speech: Shooting at the Family Research Council

By Deacon Keith Fournier
8/19/2012 (4 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

There are few news reports concerning this incident using the word marriage for what it is, the lifelong union between one man and one woman ordered toward love, the conception and rearing of children and the formation of family, which is the foundation of society because it is its first vital cell.

The shooting at the Family Research Center needs to be watched closely. Perhaps it was the act of a man with psychological problems. Perhaps, it reflects something more ominous. When defending marriage is called "hate speech", the very future of western culture is placed at risk. The Family Research Council does wonderful work and deserves our prayers and full support.

Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Center

Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Center

P>WASHINGTON,DC (Catholic Online) - At 11 A.M on Wednesday, August 15, 2012, 28 year old Floyd Lee Corkins II, of Herndon, Va. walked into the Washington DC headquarters of the Family Research Council posing as a candidate for an internship and carrying a bag of Chick-Fil-A sandwiches.

He was also carrying a gun and multiple rounds of ammunition. He had the evil intent to kill people who worked for this public interest organization precisely because they believe that marriage is between a man and a woman and have dedicated their lives to defending the family. 

The shooters evil intent was thwarted by the courage of an unarmed security guard named Leo Johnson who was shot in the arm while preventing Corkins from using the 9mm handgun and 50 rounds of ammunition to take more lives. Clearly, his heroism prevented what could have been another tragic massacre in a Nation which now seems to experience them all too frequently.

The charging affadavit of Special Agent Garrett Nabors of the F.B.I. can be read in its entirety here. Corkins was arraigned on Thursday, August 16, 2012 in Federal court.

He was charged with "Interstate Transportation of a Firearm and Ammunition" and "Assault with the Intent to Kill While Armed." The Federal magistrate, Alan Kay, ordered that Corkins be held without bond. He also set a bond hearing for Aug. 24 and ordered a psychiatric evaluation.

For six month Corkins volunteered at the DC Center for the LGBT Community. The acronym stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual and Transgendered. The group condemned the attack through these words from their executive director: 

"I was shocked to hear that someone who has volunteered with the DC Center could be the cause of such a tragic act of violence. No matter the circumstances, we condemn such violence in the strongest terms possible. We hope for a full and speedy recovery for the victim and our thoughts are with him and his family."

Tony Perkins, the President of the Family Research Council, expressed his concern that an increasingly charged atmosphere is being promoted by groups such as the Southern Poverty Law Center. This allegedly "public interest" legal group has included the Family Research Center in its list of "hate groups" because it is committed to the defense of marriage as only between one man and one woman.

On Thursday, Perkins told the Press ""Let me be clear that Floyd Corkins was responsible for firing the shot yesterday. But Corkins was given a license to shoot an unarmed man by organizations like the Southern Poverty Law Center that have been reckless in labeling organizations hate groups because they disagree with them on public policy. And I believe the Southern Poverty Law Center should be held accountable for their reckless use of terminology that is leading to the intimidation and what the FBI here has categorized as an act of domestic terrorism."

Tony Perkins makes an important point. There are few news reports concerning this incident using the word marriage for what it is, the lifelong union between one man and one woman ordered toward love, the conception and rearing of children and the formation of family. The family is the foundation of society because it is its first vital cell.

Most of the reporting uses loaded language. The Family Research Council is accused of "opposing gay marriage" rather than defending marriage as what it is. Those who defend marriage as between one man and one woman are increasingly depicted as intolerant or, as demonstrated by the Southern Poverty Law Center, accused of using "hate speech".

When sexual behavior between two men or two women is viewed as the foundation of some manufactured "right" to marry - and those who oppose this are characterized as being against the "freedom" to marry and "equal rights" - we must not remain silent. 

True marriage is the preeminent and the most fundamental of all human social institutions. It is a relationship defined by nature itself and protected by the natural law that binds all men and women. It finds its foundation in the order of creation.

Civil institutions do not create marriage nor can they create a "right" to marry for those who are incapable of marriage. The institutions of government should, when acting properly, defend marriage against those who would redefine it.

Government has long protected and regulated marriage for the common good. For example, the ban on polygamy and age requirements were enforced in order to ensure that there was a mature decision at the basis of the Marriage contract. Heterosexual marriage, procreation, and the nurturing of children form the foundation for the family, and the family forms the foundation of civil society.

To "limit" marriage to heterosexual couples is not discriminatory now, nor has it ever been. Homosexual couples cannot bring into existence what marriage intends by its very definition. To now "confer" the benefits that have been conferred in the past only to stable married couples and families to homosexual paramours is bad public policy.

Marriage is the first vital cell of society. It creates the first society of the family wherein children are to be raised so that they can fully develop and flourish. Children have a right to a mother and a father. Yes, there are broken homes and single parent homes and we should provide a compassionate social framework for those families. However, marriage and family are the social foundation of any truly just society.

The shooting at the Family Research Center needs to be watched closely. Perhaps it was the act of a man with psychological problems. Perhaps, it reflects something more ominous. When defending marriage is called "hate speech", the very future of western culture is placed at risk. The Family Research Council does wonderful work and deserves our prayers and full support.

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