The Queer Justice League and Get EQUAL Georgia want to hand deliver their letter calling on Franklin (photo) to apologize for his comments last month in an interview with the Marietta Daily Journal in which he compares gays to drug dealers as he weighs in on the topic of openly gay members of the military.
“The Bible says it’s a capital offense,” Franklin (photo) said of homosexuality. “You want someone with unrepentant criminal behavior? And it’s not just that, neither should adulterers, neither should thieves, neither should a lot of things. The church is full of sinners, but we’re told in 1st Corinthians it rattled off the homosexual, the adulterer, the thief, the liar, and such were some of you, but you’ve been washed, you’ve been justified and so forth. It’s not what you were. You’re not punishing a thought. But do you want an unrepentant drug dealer in the military? Same thing.”
The LGBT groups, which called on Franklin to apologize and undergo sensitivity training with his staff, now want to ratchet up the pressure on the Marietta lawmaker known for his outlandish comments and far-right legislative proposals. Franklin has refused to apologize and told critics that “their problem is with God and not with me.”
“We expect to raise awareness that his comments are unacceptable,” Paul Schappaugh, Get EQUAL Georgia’s state coordinator, says in an interview with Project Q Atlanta. “Comments like Franklin’s only serve to aggravate and inflame. Somebody has to stand up for the dignity of our community and that’s what we plan to do.”
The groups want to confront Franklin at the State Capitol on Tuesday and are planning an event there at 11:15 a.m.
“Our representatives in government must never use policy to dictate morality,” Brad Ploeger, a Queer Justice League member who ran unsuccessfully for the state House last year, says in a statement from the group.
“We are all free to practice religion in any manner we see fit. The only way we can maintain this freedom is by ensuring the state and church remain separate. Any attempt to force a specific set of religious beliefs through government will soon infringe the freedoms each of us enjoy,” Ploeger says.