An ordinance drafted by the mayor of Lima, Peru is intended to legalize gay ideology in the city, according to a city council member.
Manuel Cardenas Munoz, who leads the effort to pass the ordinance, said that it would force establishments to post notices that say, “This city and this establishment promotes equality on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation.”
The purpose of the ordinance is “to legalize a series of problems that the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual) community has,” confirmed Cardenas in a telephone interview with CNA on June 24.
It would require establishments to allow expressions of homosexual affection. Businesses that do not comply would be subject to fines or even closure.
The ordinance would not apply to churches, military and police facilities, and other places “outside the jurisdiction” of the city council, he said.
However, Cardenas noted that the ordinance would require schools and “cultural organizations” “to not discriminate against children, young people and teenagers, because of their sexual orientation, and would require them to be enrolled.” Schools that refuse to comply or that violate the ordinance would be subject to sanctions, he added.
Gonzalo Flores, an attorney with the Latin American Consortium on Religious Freedom, said the mayor and city council members are using “the supposed promotion of human rights, specifically that of not allowing discrimination against persons, as a façade” to impose “gender and sexual orientation ideology on the entire community.”
He said it is not true that the Peruvian constitution “prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender or sexual orientation. These terms, which have a very clear ideological bias, are not used by our constitution.”
Lima mayor Susana Villaran is attempting to penalize those persons or institutions that do not think like her, Flores said.
The ordinance would “affect those who practice a Christian creed, as well as the Catholic Church and other entities that view homosexual conduct negatively based on religious reasons or the natural order.” It would constitute a violation of the constitutional protection of freedom of religion, he noted.
The proposal is set to go before the entire city council of Lima sometime in July. It would define sexual orientation and what conduct would be considered discriminatory.
A poll carried out by the CPI agency February 1- 6 this year showed that 75 percent of Peruvians oppose homosexual “marriage.”
Cardenas said the idea for such an ordinance surfaced in late 2010, “when the LGBT community approached us about what kind of willingness existed to pass an anti-discrimination ordinance.”
Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani of Lima told reporters he hoped the ordinance would not pass. “The mayor should be worrying about more important issues for the city, such as traffic or security issues,” he said.