Peru’s Cardinal Cipriani criticizes gay civil union proposal

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Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani Thorne, the archbishop of Lima, came forward on Saturday to express his distaste for the recently-proposed bill that would legalize civil unions for gay couples in Peru. “No, I don’t approve of this,” he said, “and I don’t even think that the public wants it, I don’t believe that [the bill’s proponents]represent a majority, and I don’t think that it’s exclusionary to anyone,” he said.

Speaking on his weekly radio show on RPP “Diálogo de Fé” (“Dialogues of Faith”), the cardinal accused proponents of the bill of attempting to destroy traditional marriage. “This is an old strategy,” he said, “They start with the thin end of the wedge with laws like this, and then they’ll ask for a union that’s the same as marriage,”

Cipriani also sniped at Carlos Bruce, the bill’s sponsor, taking the opportunity to apparently question Bruce’s own sexuality. “If a person has made some alternate choices, that’s their problem and he can do whatever he wants on his own. But I don’t think that we’ve elected congresspeople just so they can justify their own life choices. I don’t think that’s right.”

Bruce, for his part, told RPP at a later date “I’m not going to respond to it because it lowers the level of the debate.”

Bruce’s bill would legalize civil unions for gay couples in Peru, though it stops short of allowing for civil marriage or permitting adoption rights. He has previously stated that the bill is meant to alleviate the legal discrimination faced by gay Peruvians. Cipriani believes advocates want to destroy marriage.

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