TBILISI, DFWatch – The parliamentary faction Christian Democrats Movement is demanding a ban on ‘immoral persons’ holding public office and wants a constitutional guarantees on prohibition of same sex marriage.
The government, non-governmental organizations and the ombudsman consider this demand categorically unacceptable.
On May 17, a celebration of the international day against homophobia in Tbilisi turned into a street scuffle, when the so-called Union of Orthodox Parents blocked the road, together with their supporters and a handful of clerics. The next day, LGBT activists and their supporters protested in front of parliament against what had happened.
A few days later, CDM prepared a bill which would change the constitution.
In its current version, the constitution says that the firm will of Georgian citizens is
‘to establish a democratic social order, economic freedom, a Rule of Law based social state, to secure universally recognized human rights and freedoms, to enhance the state independence and peaceful relations with other peoples, bearing in mind the centuries-old traditions of the Statehood of the Georgian Nation and the basic principles of the Constitution of Georgia of 1921, proclaim nation-wide the present Constitution.’
But CDM suggests adding the word ‘Christian’ to the final sentence – bearing in mind the centuries-old Christian traditions of the Statehood…
In addition they demand that the ‘constitution guarantees that public statements shouldn’t be indecent and shouldn’t assault Christian or another recognized religion’s universal principles, also that such statement shouldn’t contradict social moral.’
“By recognizing this regulation, the government once and finally should define its attitude towards obscenity, the brazen and lawless campaigns, which make propaganda to legalize Sodom sins,’ CDM representatives say. They think there should be an entry in the constitution that says the government only recognizes marriage between a man and a woman.
In addition, the party demands to write into the constitution that a person serving in an official position should satisfy law defined requirements with regards to moral behavior; and to prohibit giving permits for gambling activity on the territory of educational, religious or cultural buildings.
According to Georgian legislation, a proposal to change the constitution can be filed by the president, a certain number of MPs and a group of at least 200 000 citizens. The CDM decided to gather 200 000 signatures, because they do not have the required number of supporters in parliament. They will gather signatures for four months and present an initiative to parliament. Parliament will then make a final decision and the president then has to sign it.
However, the position of the government and the non-governmental sector is already clear. They strongly criticize the proposal and accuse the Christian Democratcs of hate speech.
“There is a free society in Georgia, where law and the constitution are the first guarantee that no one will be discriminated,” the governing majority says, adding that they will never support the initiative.