BY ANDREA HOUSTON - A strongly religious candidate for the Wildrose party in Alberta is challenging Lady Gaga in her assertion that we are all “Born This Way.”

 

Edmonton South Wildrose candidate and pastor Allan Hunsperge says gays and lesbians should really make an effort to change, and not simply accept who they are, as Lady Gaga suggests they do. “Accepting people the way they are is cruel and not loving!”

The anti-gay statements were made in a year-old blog post, which has since been removed from his website. The tirade states gay people "will suffer the rest of eternity in the lake of fire, hell, a place of eternal suffering."

Then he says, “I am not judging, I am just stating a fact!”

Hunsperger also criticized the Edmonton Public School Board for providing a safe and welcoming environment for students, specifically mentioning the gay community. (What horrible people!)

On April 15, Hunsperger posted a statement on his blog:

“Recently, a blog posting I had written in the past has been widely circulated and has caused some controversy regarding my personal religious views. The views I expressed in this blog posting are my own personal religious views and were given in the capacity as a church pastor. I fully support equality for all people, and condemn any intolerance based on sexual orientation or any other personal characteristic. I also entirely support Danielle Smith in her commitment that a Wildrose government will not legislate on contentious social issues.”

Wildrose leader Danielle Smith (whose breasts may or may not look like bus tires) refuses to condemn him, saying Hunsperger's views are from nearly a year ago and are perfectly in keeping with his religious beliefs.

That seems fair. Why should anyone question the beliefs of people running for political office in Alberta? After all, the province has been so cool with gays for almost a whole two years now. Why, it was all the way back in Dec 2010 that Alberta finally removed homosexuality from its diagnostic guide to mental-health disorders.

Meanwhile, Alberta Premier Alison Redford was quick to jump in the fray, wagging her judgemental finger, saying, “People who believe this is a legitimate perspective absolutely blows my mind.”

Really? Check your own party.

Her energy minister, Ted Morton, once headed the Alberta Civil Society Association and has long been an outspoken opponent against marriage equality. “He was among those who urged former premier Ralph Klein to invoke the notwithstanding clause to block Charter status for sexual orientation rights,” the Globe and Mail reports.

Smith defends her party, insisting it is not anti-gay. She says the Wildrose party accepts a wide range of views and has no plans to legislate on contentious moral issues.

Yet, “Wildrose members voted last year to support conscience rights, which allow professionals to opt out of services on the basis of religious objections (such as a marriage commissioner performing a same-sex ceremony, or doctors prescribing birth control or performing abortions). They also oppose a comprehensive Education Act, which didn’t pass in time before the campaign began, because Wildrose said it threatened the rights of religious home-school parents by forcing them to teach in keeping with the Human Rights Act, including gay rights.”

Alberta will head to the polls April 23.

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