Thursday, November 27, 2008

Christian police officer sacked after offering officers 'cure for homosexuality'

Meet PC Graham Cogman from Sea Palling in Norfolk. He has been sacked for misconduct.

When Cranmer was made aware of this by his loyal communicant Mr Recusant, he reflected on the usual concerns about the ‘rights hierarchy’ which is developing in the UK, in which all rights increasingly appear to trump religious rights, especially those concerned with homosexuality. It has been seen through the Sexual Orientation Regulations, the closure of Roman Catholic adoption agencies, the imposition of ‘Gay Pride’ marches upon firemen, and the proposed compulsory teaching of sex education in schools.

PC Cogman was apparently 'bombarded' at work by emails and posters promoting gay rights and events. ‘Gay liaison officers’ circulated an email urging officers to wear a pink ribbon on their uniform to mark Gay History Month. PC Cogman’s response to this 'politically correct' campaign was to send out emails to colleagues which quoted religious texts suggesting homosexual sex was sinful.

(Before Cranmer proceeds, may he ask his communicants what is ‘Gay History Month’? His Grace has never heard of it, and is most curious to know of its origins and which public bodies are ‘persuaded’ or ‘encouraged’ to promote it, how many comply, and at what cost?)

There were complaints, and he was advised by lawyers to admit a breach of the police code before a disciplinary committee. He was ordered to cease using the police’s email system for such purposes because he failed to show 'respect and tolerance' to fellow officers. However, following a further allegation that he used the internal communication system to circulate a link to an American Christian helpline which professed to cure homosexuals, he was sacked by Norfolk police.

The case has been taken on by the redoubtable barrister Paul Diamond, who defended Nadia Eweida after she was suspended by British Airways for wearing a cross, and also XX after she was suspended from school for wearing a chastity ring.

But Cranmer has a certain disquiet about this case.

Notwithstanding the manifest bias and blatant support for homosexual rights in the Norfolk police (indeed, it is manifest in society generally), it is reported that PC Cogman was ordered not to use the police internal communication system to for personal purposes.

He disobeyed this order.

While dismissal appears to be something of an overreaction, the Bible is clear that one must submit to authority, and that includes Ceasar. But PC Cogman says that the gay rights agenda made ‘being a Christian officer extremely difficult’.

Well, being a Christian anywhere is difficult, and it occurs to Cranmer – unless PC Cogman struggles in the area of his sexuality – that having to endure a few emails or pink and rainbow ribbons is utterly insignificant compared to what our brothers and sisters in the Lord endure on a daily basis in Israel, Egypt, Iraq – where the persecution is very real, and quite literally a matter of life and death.

Yet PC Cogman says: ‘I have to make a stand when things become so blatantly biased against me just because I hold a faith.'

One might consider the example of Jesus when he was presented with the woman caught in adultery. Cranmer has no doubt that he was also finding it a little difficult ‘because of his faith’, but his example was to show compassion and forgiveness. Certainly he encouraged her to sin no more, but he did not do so with condemnation which included the words 'inappropriate’, ‘thoughtless’ or ‘insensitive', as PC Cogman is reported to have done. And neither did Jesus use the occasion as an opportunity to quote those scriptures to her which are critical of adultery.

And Cranmer is equally sure that the Lord did not say to her anything like 'Love the sinner, hate the deed,' not least because for many sinners their sexual behaviour has become so much a part of their identity that there is no convenient distinction to be made: to hate the sin is to hate the sinner.

Jesus never promised that being a Christian would be easy, and the call to take up one’s cross is a daily one. To be crucified with Christ is a daily anguish endured patiently and silently by millions all around the world. PC Cogman certainly breached the internal email ban, but there is prima facie evidence that he also failed to treat his colleagues with ‘politeness, tolerance and respect, regardless of their beliefs, age, gender or sexual orientation’.

It is undoubtledly wrong that gay rights now trump religious rights, and of course diversity statements cut both ways, but for a professing Christian to set aside a direct order from a superior is unwise. And to continue using the police email system to communicate personal beliefs is indeed unacceptable. Certainly, PC Cogman may have been discriminated against, even harassed and bullied, but there are appropriate procedures in all organisations for dealing with such matters, and such procedures must be followed.

Having said that, Cranmer is sick and tired of politically-correct policing, and he just wishes they would get on with their jobs and stop obsessing about black and Asian quotas and gay-friendly training programmes. Perhaps the police might get over the pervasive mentality in which ‘diversity’ appears to trump ‘criminality’.

27 Comments:

Blogger Botogol said...

a thoughtful - and indeed erudite -analysis, your grace.

27 November 2008 at 09:53  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The PC is quite right to react against a PC culture that persists in ramming down the throat of all and sundry its engorged agenda, 'gay' or other. And what's more, can we please desist from the use of the word 'gay' in this way. I once knew a young lady named Gay (no limericks please) - I don't suppose for one minute that she or others so named were consulted in any way whatsoever when their [note] Christian names were hijacked by the sodomites and their camp followers. Outrageous.

27 November 2008 at 10:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would also add, pedantically, although I feel importantly, off topic that your comment below your Church of England symbol is incorrect.

597 AD refers to the establishment of the church IN England and not to the church OF England as I am sure you are aware.

27 November 2008 at 12:14  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I apologise your Grace but my original comment has not appeared (I am not the first anon). So I will repeat it.

I agree with your analysis of this case. It is not really comparable with the cross and ring banning incidents.

I would only say regarding your example of Jesus and the adulterous woman that the reason he did not feel the need to quote scripture was because he was well aware that she would have been familiar with it.

The woman did not turn to the saviour and say 'I am adulterous - get used to it!'

The PC should not have used the email system to send biblical quotes to his colleagues but neither IMO should the police be using it for pro gay propaganda. Both are unnecessary and indefensible.

27 November 2008 at 12:23  
Anonymous shaven-headed tattooed knuckle-dragging moron said...

Only oppressed groups have rights, individuals - especially members of dominant majorities - have no rights. The 'Tranzis' have taken over: http://www.quebecoislibre.org/021221-6.htm

27 November 2008 at 13:00  
Anonymous the recusant said...

Whilst perhaps he was unwise to proselytise in the manner he did, considering the catalogue of corruption that is endemic and institutional (to use current PC parlance) in the Police, to suggest, as they do, that he has been dismissed for disobeying a single order is ludicrous in the extreme. He has been sacked for no other reason than to suggest gay sex is sinful and for not recanting of his error, even the BBC and Pink News don’t bother to disguise the fact.

27 November 2008 at 13:07  
Anonymous Michael Canaris said...

From one of the linked articles:
--He was dismissed for the first charge and will be required to resign for the second...--

If one's dismissed from a position, how can one possibly resign from it?

27 November 2008 at 13:35  
Anonymous Wallenstein said...

It doesn't seem like PC Cogman's actions were done out of love for his fellow man... rather an attempt to make a personal, political point.

He reminds me of the Pharasees who ostentatiously made sure their piety was known by all around them; if he'd spoken to his colleages one-to-one as friends, there would have been no problem, but a blanket broadcast is showing off, and is certainly not the biblical way.

And for those who say "well the gays push their agenda, so why can't Christians", remember that Christians are called to a higher standard and should not resort to tit-for-tat action.

27 November 2008 at 13:52  
Anonymous Rebel Saint said...

Your Grace is incorrect on numerous fronts.

The officer was not dismissed for 'misuse' ('Reply to all'?) of the internal mail system (an offence which I am sure takes place on an almost routine basis!) but for the content of the messages - namely scripture.

Like others here I believe that he may have been misplaced in his style of 'winning people over', but I applaud his courage in at least standing his ground.

His biggest mistake of course was to quote the Holy Bible and not the Unholy Koran.

Secondly, your use of the adulterous woman as an argument is entirely misjudged. Jesus did not need to condemn her with scripture, everyone else was doing that [and He does not repudiate their claims of sinfulness]. He simply applies grace to her sin. Had Jesus received a scroll from the Pharisees requiring Him to wear a pink ribbon before He was allowed to teach in the temple I am sure He may have had a scripture or two to respond with.

Thirdly, it is not always right to obey the authorities. In fact this very week I taught 200 children the scripture "We must obey God before other people" Acts 5v29. I used Daniel as a Biblical example & Lillian Ladele as a contemporary example.

27 November 2008 at 14:09  
Blogger ultramontane grumpy old catholic said...

When the issue of decriminalisation of homosexual acts was being discussed in the early 1960s, the New Statesman at the time assured its readers that the only consequence of this humane change in the law would be that homosexuals could then live quietly within the community - with sex at the rate of 2.7 times a week - just like anyone else.

If only ....

27 November 2008 at 15:20  
Anonymous Anguished soul said...

I applaud PC Cogman for standing up for the gospel, but fear he was misguided. The deed has cost him his job, probably his pension at a time when finding another job will be difficult.

The reason why homosexuality and transvestitism has increased in our land, is because our churches no longer preach the gospel. Our church leaders are false shepherds and false prophets who prefer the Purpose Driven Lie and charasmaniacs like Todd Bentley from Lakeland, Florida.

The Lord has withdrawn Himself from the Church because of this and we no longer enjoy His protection. He has given us up to uncleanness, the fruit of our doings. He has sent leanness into our soul.

The sad thing is we don't realise it and think we just have to stand up for what's right or just have another Nehemiah Prayer Walk! With no understanding that the Lord is no longer listening.

No wonder our nation is in such a mess.

27 November 2008 at 15:28  
Blogger Adonis said...

So, according to your narrative, PC Cogman is guilty of using words that were ‘inappropriate, thoughtless and insensitive.’ Pray tell us what these words are?

I ask in the confidence that any statement not fully in support of gay rights is seen as inappropriate, thoughtless and insensitive.

Ben Summerskill of Stonewall admitted before Parliament that religious views against homosexuality were acceptable if they were ‘temperate’ but then confusingly admitted that hate could be expressed in a temperate fashion. Elsewhere, he is seething with resentment for any religious opinion that fails to endorse homosexuality.

Frankly, these ambiguous descriptions of what was said simply add to the confusion.

I also detect a clear contradiction when you suggest that Cogman had access to procedures for dealing with what he considered to be offensive, and you then go on to decry the intensity of ‘politically-correct policing’. In part, this is exactly what Cogman is on about. Indeed, you even acknowledge the ‘…blatant support for homosexual rights in the Norfolk police.’

You may be interested to know that a few years ago senior officers of this force were actively recruiting homosexuals at the gay pride march in Brighton. Sussex gay officer’s were filled with resentment because at the time the Norfolk chief constable barred his officer’s from parading in uniform in the London Gay Parade.

Subsequently, one the recruiting Norfolk officers, a gay chief inspector, tried to sue the force for £400,000 for sex discrimination when sacked.

So, is there more to this force than meets the eye?

PC Cogman was being ordered to show ‘respect and tolerance’ to those who indulged in dangerous and addictive behaviour. What his superiors cannot square is that gay rights and religious freedom are not morally equivalent. You seem to ignore this aspect of the dispute.

Of course, religious persecution is experienced in different ways and different at levels, but this in no way diminishes the substance of Cogman’s Christian belief and behaviour.

You are critical of Cogman in showing vocal opposition on the basis Jesus did not condemn the adulterer. The inference here is that abject meekness is the order of the day. Recall, the violent action of Christ in removing the moneylenders from the Temple. Are we talking about the same person?

There is a significant point regarding the punishments in this case that deserves scrutiny.

First, and seemingly for the second time, the misuse of the email system. He was sentenced to be dismissed.

Second, for the highly subjective offence of being intolerant. He was required to resign.

If the Home Secretary decided to allow an appeal for reinstatement on the second charge, she is effectively prevented from doing so on the first, because the lesser punishment would be a requirement to resign, thus effectively endorsing the sacking.

As for the origins of the Gay History Month, it started in the USA in 1994 and was introduced here in 2005 by lesbian Sue Saunders and the homosexual group Schools Out. It is another part of the propaganda machine for the homosexual lobby to advance their cause.

May I suggest we are in danger of considering rights at the expense of what is right!

27 November 2008 at 16:35  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Gay penguins steal eggs from straight couples" - Daily Telegraph website today.

27 November 2008 at 17:18  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cranmer seems to be quite politically correct himself today! I would have thought better of him.

27 November 2008 at 18:12  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Adonis,

The words which so manifestly irk you are clearly in quotation marks and were used against PC Cogman by the police authority.

27 November 2008 at 19:13  
Blogger Man in a Shed said...

Your Grace may wish to consider the following story about an upcoming clash between Obama and the Catholic Church over the states right to insist on abortions.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/features/religion/chi-081111bishops,0,615284.story

27 November 2008 at 19:51  
Blogger len.allan said...

"Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesars,and unto God the things that are Gods". Matthew 22:21

27 November 2008 at 20:02  
Anonymous Preacher said...

Your Grace.
I feel that it is important to seek perspective on this issue, as many others have rightly said, the use of any equipment that is out of bounds is wrong, but the penalty far outweighs the transgression. I feel that an example has been made as a warning to any others that stand against the status quo. I remember that recently several members of the fire service were disciplined for refusing to partake in a 'gay pride' march even though none of them were homosexual.
Its true that Christians are being murdered by extremists in other countries, yet I understand that a debate entitled 'A common word between us and you' has taken place in the Vatican earlier this month with the apparent desire to 'bring about world peace' of course the fox & goose can live peacefully together, as long as the goose is inside of the fox. this young man has stood up for his faith in the face of persecution and should be supported fully by all of us. the fact that in this case the persecution has not cost his life is I feel irrelevant.
I have and do work with people who are lost in many areas of sin, including homosexuals, We have to accept that the lost are just people who need to accept that their actions are repugnant to God, they need to repent and turn to Him to recieve salvation. To try and justify any sin is wrong and will lead to Gods judgement. Its usually the noisy minority of any group that instigates the trouble as I feel is true in this case but lack of response is not the answer, appropriate response is.

27 November 2008 at 20:04  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How did your informant obtain the photograph for your publication ?

27 November 2008 at 20:43  
Blogger len.allan said...

"The whole Adam life of nature
is absolutely fallen.
It cannot be improved.
It is fallen and poisoned by the serpent in root and branch.
The whole scheme of redemption lies in the fact that God must begin again,so to speak,
and make a new creation.
Through the cross He plans to bring to an end the old Adam life of a fallen race,And build again a new creation in the midst of its ruins.
Rather than point to Adam , we christians should preach Christ!

27 November 2008 at 22:23  
Anonymous Terry said...

The issue here is victimisation. PC Cogman was doing no more than others were doing in using the internet - the real "crime" was his unacceptable biblical views. By all means discipline him re the e-mail if everyone else is to be similarly disciplined - but that's not going to happen here, is it?

27 November 2008 at 23:10  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cranmer

You state that the '...words which so manifestly irk you' are in quotation marks and were used by the police against PC Cogman.

Yes, but you also supported the idea the words were manifestly 'inappropriate, thoughtless or insensitive' and you compared their use with Jesus and the adulterer.

You do not know what the words were.

Secondly, you go positively to state '...there is prima facie evidence that [Cogman] also failed to treat his colleagues with politiness, tolerance and respect.'

Now perhaps you can tell me exactly how he was impolite, intolerant and disrespectful.

You are second-guessing because you do not know what was said. In other words, you know only exactly what others want you to beleive about his intolerance.

If ever I was up for trial, I would not want you on the jury - that's for sure

28 November 2008 at 10:42  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Anonymous,

His Grace does not usually respond to anonymice, but your hypocrisy justifies an exception.

If you bother to read the article in its entirety, instead of selectively quoting, you will find that His Grace accords with the perception that PC Cogman has been discriminated against, harassed, and even bullied.

You conveniently ignore this.

Words which are deemed to be 'inappropriate’, ‘thoughtless’ or ‘insensitive' are so in the eyes of the beholder. Whilst it is true that His Grace does not know what these words were, it is sufficient to know that they were judged by a recipient to be 'inappropriate’, ‘thoughtless’ and ‘insensitive'. Yet neither do you know what these words were, yet you are content to judge His Grace as being too corrupt for jury service simply for stating that there appears to be a prima facie case to answer. This renders it somewhat different from the cases of religious persecution which Mr Diamond has previously pursued through the courts.

Are you aware of the meaning of prima facie?

Please do not bother responding unless you can find the creativity of spirit to post under a name. 'Colin' is available.

28 November 2008 at 11:35  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From Adonis:

My last ‘anonymous’ effort is due to the fact I am having difficulty posting under my assumed identity. So please bear with me with this problem.

However, now I see your cherubic composure is slipping by denigrating me as a hypocrite and more.

The basis for this is that I have ‘conveniently ignored’ your support for Cogman simply because I draw no attention to it. This is unfortunate because it was not my intention.

But – can you not see there is an element of duplicity in your original posting?

On the one hand you support him, yet on the other you do not. My point is that this negative aspect of your statement is predicated upon mere assumption and guess-work as to the character and substance of Cogman’s intolerance.

Now, however, you also openly admit you do not know what the intolerant words are.

It is insufficient to take refuge in what other ‘beholders’ think about the qualities of intolerance as you do because it leads to quite preposterous problems.

In May 2005, for example, Sam Brown of Balliol College Oxford was arrested and charged by the police for causing harassment, alarm and distress for calling a police horse gay. The police attempted to fine him £80. Later, he remonstrated, “As far as I know calling a horse a gay is not offensive. I don’t think I’ve committed a crime – I wasn’t talking about a human being. One of my friends I was with is homosexual and doesn’t think I did anything wrong.” Subsequently, the police publicly and fully justified the arrest and charge.

So, let us beware of the beholder!

My initial posting spelt out how homosexuals take exception to anything that does not endorse their life choice. This is the point you have missed.

Yes, I know the meaning of prima facie but wonder if you do since, yet again, you continue to support the case against Cogman.

Since you now admit you do not know the nature of the words of intolerance that were used you are, nevertheless, prepared to assume there is a case to answer. Quite extraordinary judicial logic at work here!

Finally, you pluck from thin air an accusation that I judge you too corrupt for jury service. This will not do simply because you have no evidence for this.

Re-examine my final statement! It is in reference to your “second-guessing” as to the weight of evidence, which you now admit, you do not know.

So let me spell it out more precisely.

I would not want you on my jury, not because you are corrupt, but because you are a fool.

28 November 2008 at 13:04  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Ah, ad hominem. The ultimate refuge of those who seek to silence their opponent.

His Grace may be a fool, but the beholder may himself have impaired judgement.

You appear to confuse duplicity with nuance, balance or ambiguity.

While there are many who may find His Grace at times a little ambiguous - including the churches of England and Rome - he is not and never has been double-dealing or deceitful.

On the one hand His Grace does indeed support PC Cogman (based on nothing but media reporting), and on the other he reads of prima facie reason to question certain aspects of his behaviour (again, based on nothing but media reporting). His Grace engages with both aspects of the reported story. While you are intent to dismiss the latter, you admit the former. This is your manifest bias.

Perhaps you are a personal friend, or perhaps you are Mr Diamond.

It is trivial and pedantic of you to persist in the absurd allusion that His Grace would have only the evidence of The Daily Mail to rely on in a court of law.

If questions may not legitimately be raised from media reports, then His Grace might as well return to ashes and dust.

28 November 2008 at 13:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

From Adonis:

Now I see you are not only a fool, you are vain too boot!

28 November 2008 at 14:49  
Blogger Little Black Sambo said...

Adonis, you argue like a little girl. Give us a rest.

29 November 2008 at 11:33  

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