By Trudy Ring
Originally published on Advocate.com December 11 2013 3:44 PM ET
While the Salvation Army has recently tried to strike a conciliatory tone toward LGBT people, some activists are pointing out reasons not to drop your money in the organization’s red kettles this holiday season.
The evangelical Christian charitable group has scrubbed its website of links to organizations promoting “ex-gay” therapy, and a spokeswoman recently stated, “The Salvation Army does not consider homosexual orientation a sin. Please know that we serve anyone who comes to our doors without discrimination.” But that doesn’t mean the Salvation Army is a friend to LGBT people, says a blogger at NoRedKettles.com.
“The church has yet to repudiate any of its explicitly anti-gay beliefs,” the blogger writes. “And though these positions may seem to be limited to the group’s internal doctrines, they’ve become a persistent element of the church’s overtly political activities — activities which have negatively impacted the Salvation Army’s ability to provide charitable services, and have aimed to limit the rights and benefits of LGBT citizens in multiple nations.”
The post goes on to list some of these political activities, such as campaigning against the decriminalization of gay sex in New Zealand (the Salvation Army subsequently apologized for participating in the campaign), opposing the repeal of an antigay law in Scotland, and seeking exemption from nondiscrimination laws in the United States. It also notes that the group fired a caseworker in Vermont after finding out she was bisexual.
NoRedKettles.com also lists alternative organizations to consider when making charitable donations.