Christian Rights Group Asks U.N. to Investigate Discrimination in Germany
(CNSNews.com) – The Austria-based Observatory on Intolerance and Discrimination Against Christians (OIDAC) in Europe has filed a report with the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) detailing apparent violations of parental and individual rights in Germany, including a ban on homeschooling and the compulsory sex education in schools.
The report also discusses laws that apparently do not protect the religious beliefs of pharmacists who are forced to provide abortifacient “morning after” pills or face losing their “concession,” or authority to operate.
The 16-page report published on Oct. 2 also states that freedom to gather for protests at abortions clinics has been “severely limited” and describes anti-Christian activities, including the public destruction of crosses.
The OIDAC is a non-governmental and not-for-profit organization funded by private donations and is registered under Austrian law. It is led by Catholic theologian Veronika Gudrun Kugler, according to its website.
The report includes cases dating from 2008-2012 and covers three areas of intolerance and discrimination: violations of rights and freedoms, incidents of violence of personal integrity, and hate crimes and vandalism.
Some highlights of the report include:
-- In March 2011, Irene Wiens, mother of 12, served a 43-day jail sentence for refusing to enroll her children in compulsory sex education classes.
-- In November 2010 an atheist succeeded in getting a crucifix removed from his son’s classroom, despite opposition by the majority of parents. Morning prayer in the classroom was changed to “Good Morning Circle.”
-- In July 2012 the German magazine Titantic presents the Pope as senile and incontinent with photo montage that shows a large urine stain on his white robs while giving a blessing.
“A mood of hostility in Germany toward Christianity comes across in the numerous instances of vandalism, destruction of property, and defamatory displays listed in the report,” Rebecca Oas of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM), a U.N. watchdog group, wrote in a press release announcing the submission of the report.
“Many of them involve the destruction or defamation of Christian symbols, churches, and cemeteries,” she said, “as well as sites of religious significance such as the birthplace of Pope Benedict XVI.”
“The Observatory's report was filed in anticipation of the Human Rights Committee's review of Germany’s implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,” Oas wrote. “This treaty affirms the “freedom of faith, conscience, and to profess a religious or philosophical creed,” but also asserts its protection of a “negative freedom of faith” defined as the “rejection of a religion and its symbols.”