Brazil's Senate is currently engaged in a debate over proposed legislation that would criminalize anything deemed a condemnation of homosexuality. The new legislation, labeled the "homophobia law" would demand jail time for violations of the law and would not provide for any religious exception.
The proposed legislation has already passed through the House and was debated last Thursday in the Senate. The Senate members refused to vote on the matter, in part due to the number of civilians who contacted government officials to voice their concerns about the proposed law. Instead, a study group was established to further investigate and acquire professional input on the issue.
The legislation includes wording that would prevent any type of supposed discrimination due to sexual orientation. According to ZENIT, priests who preached against homosexuality could face 3 to 5 years in jail and seminaries would not be permitted to reject applicants based on their sexual orientation.
Some have condemned the proposed law saying that it is religious discrimination. A ZENIT source said, "In addition to the rights established in the constitution for all people, the homosexual, by the simple fact of being homosexual, would gain privileges."
Exodus Brazil, the Brazilian branch of the international ex-homosexual ministry, has expressed grave concern about the law saying, "It will extinguish ex-gay ministry in Brazil for all practical purposes."
Brazil has been a recent leader in pushing for gay rights and trumping traditional family values. In 2005, Brazil legalized homosexual adoption. As previously reported by LifeSiteNews.com, Brazilian ambassadors have been the driving force behind a 2006 proposal to the Organization of American States to designate sexual orientation an "inalienable right" with full human-rights protection.