Priest warns of persecution as Brazil opens emergency phone line to ‘homophobia’ reports
SAO PAULO, March 14, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Catholic priest and pro-life activist Luiz Carlos Lodi da Cruz is warning that Brazilians who object to homosexual behavior and reject the homosexualist political agenda in Brazil could soon be targeted by a new whistleblower system installed by Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff.
Beginning in late February, the Brazilian government has begun to take complaints of “homophobia” on its Dial 100 emergency line, which was created to facilitate the reporting of human rights abuses. The system was announced along with a new government program with the slogan, “Make Brazil a country free of homophobia,” which includes a special logo.
“If someone says ‘I need help’ in any Brazilian municipality, it is necessary to act together. It isn’t just acting quickly, but rather the development of an integrated policy for the protection of the citizen,” said Brazilian Human Rights Minister Maria do Rosário, during the presentation of the program.
In a message to supporters, Lodi da Cruz calls the new system a means of “persecuting those who disapprove of vices against nature.”
“Note that, without legal forewarning, the minister now wants to punish those who do not regard unnatural conduct as natural. Whoever complains doesn’t have to worry, because the anonymity of the source is guaranteed,” writes Lodi da Cruz. “Therefore, at the end of the second month of the Dilma administration, her government has already established religious persecution based on free and anonymous telephone calls.”
Although “homophobia” in Brazil is used to refer to acts of violence perpetrated against homosexuals, it is also used to condemn those who publicly object to homosexual behavior.
Dilma Rousseff’s Labor Party has repeatedly sought to outlaw criticisms of homosexuality, but lawmakers, mindful of the public’s rejection of homosexualism, have repeatedly voted against the party’s “homophobia bill”. However, despite the lack of legislative backing for its agenda, courts have treated existing law as if it already prohibited such expressions.
Lodi da Cruz offers some disturbing scenarios that could arise from the new system.
“The Holy Mass is being celebrated. During the homily, the priest alludes to the first chapter of the letter of Saint Paul to the Romans, which strongly condemns homosexualism, both female and male (Romans 1:26-28). He cites the words of the Apostle stating that giving one’s self over the “relations against nature” (Romans 1:26) was the punishment of those who “traded the truth of God for a lie” (Romans 1:25). At that moment, someone passes in front of the church and feels uncomfortable with the preaching. He goes to a public telephone and denounces the ‘homophobic’ celebrant.”
The priest notes that similar problems could arise if a parent who rejects homosexual behavior decides not to hire a lesbian to care for her child, or if homosexuals who are engaged in lewd acts are asked to leave a commercial establishment.
“If a homosexual is murdered, the homicide should be punished. But it is absurd for the law to impose a special penalty because of the fact that the victim is homosexual,” writes Lodi da Cruz. “The same might be said regarding someone who hits a homosexual. It isn’t right that the culprit should respond for a crime worse than bodily injury that is covered in the Penal Code.”
Fr. Lodi da Cruz, who is president of the organization Pro-Life Anapolis, has himself been on the receiving end of Brazilian restrictions on freedom of speech. In 2005 he was required to pay monetary damages to a pro-abortion anthropologist Debora Diniz Rodrigues for calling her an “abortionist,” because the term “gravely offends her personal honor and dignity.” The decision was upheld by two appeals courts, and the nation’s Supreme Tribunal refused to hear the case.