Beliefs Mark Silk: Spiritual Politics Opinion

Love the Sinner

On Meet the Press last Sunday, Giuliani was asked whether he agreed with Huckabee’s 1992 description of homosexuality as “an aberrant, unnatural, and sinful lifestyle.” He dissented: “I don’t believe it’s sinful.” But then went on to say:

My moral views on this come from the, you know, from the Catholic Church, and I believe that homosexuality, heterosexuality, as a way that somebody leads their life is not, isn’t sinful,” said Mr. Giuliani, who as New York mayor temporarily moved in with two gay roommates after he separated from his wife. “It’s the acts — it’s the various acts that people perform that are sinful, not the orientation that they have.

The language here begins with a fumble, but what’s pretty clear is that he’s now aligning himself with the Catholic position distinguishing same-sex orientation (no sin) from certain physical behaviors commonly engaged in by practicing homosexuals (sin). Whether Rudy actually embraces such a view, or is simply cuddling up to his church belatedly is impossible to say. What would be interesting to see is an effort on his part to distinguish between his stated religious views on the subject and what he thinks are the correct public policies. I’m not holding my breath.

About the author

Mark Silk

Mark Silk is Professor of Religion in Public Life at Trinity College and director of the college's Leonard E. Greenberg Center for the Study of Religion in Public Life. He is a Contributing Editor of the Religion News Service

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