his own bigotry. In his christmas message, the Pope lashed out at homosexuals -- accusing them of destroying the nature of humans and even destroying world peace. It was truly a sad exhibition of hatred from a religious leader claiming to be a follower of Jesus (who preached a message of love and acceptance -- and who never condemned homosexuality).
Fortunately, it seems that most people are turning away from the kind of hate promoted by religious leaders like the Pope. According to a survey by the Public Religion Research Institute, a majority of Americans (52%) now support allowing same-sex marriage -- and when assured that no churches would be forced to perform those marriages that didn't want to do so, that percentage rises to 58%. And that includes 59% of catholics, 56% of mainline protestants, and 77% of those not affiliated with any religious group.
Oddly enough, the Pope's views are shared by a majority of only one religious group in the United States -- white evangelical protestants, the same people who consider the Pope to not even be christian. About 77% of white evangelicals oppose same-sex marriage.
And an even larger percentage of Americans say that any group offering adoption services that receives any government money should not be allowed to turn down gay/lesbian couples who want to adopt. About 63% agree with this.
The Pope, and his evangelical enemies, may still be determined to use their religion to push their own bigoted beliefs (just like they once used that religion to justify their racist beliefs), but the good thing is that most Americans are no longer willing to go along with that kind of hate. The religious prefer the gospel of love taught by Jesus over the message of hate from small-minded religious leaders, and those of us who are not religious simply believe in the equality guaranteed by the Constitution. And that is a good thing for the future of this country.