When grandmas go to jail for witnessingWORLDNETDAILY - By Janet Folger - February 7, 2007 -- Arrested for sharing the Gospel? An expected outcome in North Korea, China or any Muslim country on the globe. But in Pennsylvania? Yep. Arlene Elshinnawy, a 75-year-old grandmother of three, and Lynda Beckman, a 70-year- old grandmother of 10 (along with nine others), were arrested for sharing their faith on the public sidewalk in Philadelphia, Pa., USA. They faced 47 years (the rest of their lives) in jail for spreading the Gospel because of a Pennsylvania "hate crimes" law that is nearly identical to H.R. 254 – the "hate crimes" bill reintroduced in Congress and said to be on the "fast track" in the House Judiciary Committee. This is the same bill that previously passed both the House and Senate and was killed only because of Republican leadership opposition in conference – something we no longer have.Don't believe hate crimes will silence your freedom of speech and freedom of religion? Think again.
Pastors in Pennsylvania are now seeking liability insurance to protect themselves from being prosecuted under the "hate speech" law. That's right. They are reacting to Pennsylvania's addition of "sexual orientation" to the state's hate crimes laws. Of particular concern was the expansion of the definition of "harassment" to include "harassment by communication" – which means one could be convicted based upon spoken words alone.
Their fear is a rational one. Hate crimes invariably lead to fines and jail time for those who "violate" them. Just ask Sweden's Pastor Ake Green. Green faced jail time for the content of his sermon. He read from Romans Chapter 1 – something that is no longer legal in Sweden.
The "hate crimes" – or more appropriately, "thought crimes" – bill is the single most dangerous bill in America. Along with its companion, the "Employment Non-Discrimination Act," or ENDA – "Thought Crimes for your Business"– is expected to pass this session of Congress. Bow to the homosexual agenda – endorse, embrace, subsidize and celebrate it – or go out of business. That's what it did to the largest and most respected adoption agency in Boston, Catholic Charities, who, by refusing to place vulnerable orphans in homosexual homes, was forced to close its doors. England's about to get a dose of the same.
But you don't speak out about homosexuality, you say? Think you're safe? Think again. Here are just a few examples I've highlighted my book, "The Criminalization of Christianity," where you'll find a whole lot more.
Protest Islam? That's a hate crime!Maybe it had something to do with Sept. 11. Maybe it had something to do with the beheadings. Maybe it had something to do with what is written in the Quran. But Canadian Pastor Mark Harding doesn't believe the Muslim religion is one of peace. So when his local high school started handing out copies of the Quran and announced a policy of setting aside a room for Muslim students to pray during school hours, Pastor Harding protested. Didn't think it was a good idea – especially since Christian, Jewish and Buddhist kids weren't afforded the same opportunity.
After losing an appeal to Canada's Supreme Court Oct. 17, 2002, Harding was said to have "willfully promoted hatred" in violation of Canadian law that had just passed six months earlier. He was then forced to undergo two years probation and 340 hours of "community service" at the Islamic Society of North America in Mississauga, Ontario.
So, for the "crime" of handing out leaflets protesting a high school's pro-Muslim policy, Pastor Harding was ordered to do community service to further the very religion he morally opposed. ---
California 'hate crimes' law – pro-lifers automatic suspects"Hate crimes" bill, SB 1234, was signed into law by California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger Sept. 22, 2004. SB 1234 creates a new hate-crime training requirement for law enforcement called "multimission criminal extremism." In addition to those categories already considered for special punishment under the term "hate crimes," the new multimission criminal extremism training adds "anti-reproductive-rights crimes."
That means if you are pro-life, you are an automatic suspect, and law enforcement is being specially trained on how to handle you. ---This law also expands "crimes" to include "speech" interpreted as "threats, intimidation and coercion." As long as a "victim" claims the speech makes them "feel" "intimidated," violators will be liable to penalties of $10,000-$25,000 and a year in jail."[And] any person who says they are 'fearful' because someone has said homosexuality is wrong could have the speaker arrested and jailed," according to James Hartline, California pro-family activist.
This will be used to criminalize expressions of biblical truth about homosexuality as "hate speech" and could very well target not just organizations who disagree with homosexuality, but Christian bookstores that carry books like "The Criminalization of Christianity" or another book already ruled to contain "intimidating" beliefs: the Bible. ---