Blackpool Borough Council and Blackpool Transport Services discriminated against Christians when they removed bus adverts for an event with US evangelist Franklin Graham, a court has ruled.
The adverts ran on local buses to promote the 2018 Lancashire Festival of Hope with Graham, the son of late evangelist Billy Graham.
They displayed only details of the event and the slogan “Time for Hope”, but were removed after a social media campaign by LGBT activists.
But the court has now sided with organisers the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA UK).
In a judgment handed down on Thursday, Judge Claire Evans said the removal of the ads over Graham’s religious views on marriage was a violation of the Equality Act 2010, and an unjustified interference in the organisers’ freedom of expression.
The judge also concluded that a secular organisation advertising “in exactly the same way … would not have had its advertisements removed”.
Elsewhere, the judgment said that Graham’s views were shared by many religions.
“They may be offensive to some people, but they cannot properly be characterised as ‘extremist’,” it said.
Judge Evans ruled “overwhelmingly in favour” of the Lancashire Festival of Hope, saying Blackpool “had a wholesale disregard” for the event’s right to freedom of expression while simultaneously giving preference to the rights and opinions of the LGBT community.
BGEA UK said Thursday’s ruling was a “strong and clear rebuke of the cancel culture sweeping the UK”.
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SOURCE: Christian Today