The Coalition of African American Pastors (CAAP) awarded Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore the “Letter from Birmingham Jail Courage” Award Friday for maintaining his stand on marriage between one man and one woman.
The 7,000-member black pastors group, led by founder and President Rev. William Owens, honored Moore after his recent instruction to Alabama’s state probate judges not to issue same-sex marriage licenses according to a federal court’s ruling. According to a press release from CAAP, the event took place on the steps of the Alabama Supreme Court in Montgomery.
In a statement in the press release, Owens said Moore “is deserving of this special recognition, which is inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous letter, for his principled stand for natural marriage.”
CAAP states the newly initiated “Letter from a Birmingham Jail Courage Award” is “granted to honor someone whose dedication to justice and natural law has led to an outstanding act in defense of first principles. There is no one who stands out as more deserving of this recognition than Chief Justice Roy Moore.”
King wrote the original “Letter” about taking a stand against immoral law while sitting in his jail cell. Owens himself marched with King in the civil rights movement 50 years ago.
The pastors’ group continues on Moore’s courage:
His memorandum on the question of conscience, Constitutionality, and state law is a shining example of the rigorous intellectual analysis that is both necessary and rare in the public square. As such, it deserves that we do what is in our power to help others understand how momentous this stand for principle was.
“Justice Moore is an example for all of us,” said Owens, adding:
By making a principled and persuasive stand for marriage, Justice Moore has singled himself out as someone who is ready to defend our most cherished values and help lead this new civil rights movement. By his words and action, he has helped preserve marriage, the family, justice, and the spirit of democracy.
Owens and his coalition have been highly critical of attempts by both President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder to portray the same-sex marriage movement as another civil rights campaign.
“The LGBT community hijacked our movement, a movement they know nothing about,” Owens recently told Breitbart News. “President Obama is delusional to compare our struggle with the struggle for marriage equality. Gays have not had fire hoses or dogs unleashed at them. They have not been hung from trees or denied basic human rights.”
“President Obama didn’t march,” Owens continued. “He has benefited from those of us who did march, but for President Obama to say we marched so that gays would have the right to marry today, is a disgrace and a lie.”