Cardinal’s ‘gay empire’ phrase not hate speech: Judge

A cardinal who denounced the threat to the family from a “gay empire” has been deemed by a Spanish judge not to have committed a hate speech crime.

Cardinal Antonio Cañizares of Valencia made this denunciation in a homily on May 13.

In his preaching, the cardinal also listed gender theory as among the threats to the family.

A Spanish network set up to help refugees filed a complaint, accusing the cardinal of xenophobia.

Cardinal Cañizares had questioned if all the immigrants arriving in Spain were “clean wheat.”

A second complaint process was started by the Valencian LGBT association Lambda, together with 55 other organisations.

A judge ruled on Thursday that the cardinal, simply by using such speech, was not committing a hate crime.

Rather, he was exercising his right to freedom of expression.

Criminal proceedings were dismissed without further investigation.

This was because the magistrate saw neither “criminal intent” nor an appeal to “hatred and violence”.

Before the judgement, the cardinal had defended himself through an open letter.

Cardinal Cañizares wrote that he is not “homophobic, xenophobic nor sexist”.

He added that he respects every person without excluding anyone.

He also apologised for the words that “might have hurt some”, and he asked for reciprocity.

“Stop harassing the Church and respect freedom of religion,” he wrote.

Earlier this month, Cardinal Cañizares led thousands in an “act of reparation” for an invitation to Valencia’s gay parade that depicted a couple of kissing Madonnas.

The cardinal was supported by Spain’s bishops’ conference in doing the reparation.


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