Atlanta Fire Chief Speaks Out After Being Fired For His Religious Beliefs
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"The LGBT members of our community have a right to be able to express their views and convictions about sexuality and deserve to be respected for their position without hate or discrimination," Cochran told me in an exclusive interview. "But Christians also have a right to express our belief regarding our faith and be respected for our position without hate and without discrimination. In the United States, no one should be vilified, hated or discriminated against for expressing their beliefs."
Cochran had been suspended in November because of a passage he wrote about homosexuality in a book titled, "Who Told You That You Were Naked?" The book's theme is about biblical morality.
Cochran said he referenced homosexuality on less than a half a page in the 160-page book.
"I did not single out homosexuality," he said. 'I simply spoke to sex being created by God for pro-creation and He intended it to be between a man and a woman in holy matrimony - and that any other sex outside of that is sin."
"The essence of the Christian faith is a love without condition, sir," he told me. "I have demonstrated that love in the fire service for 34 years. There's not any person of any people group that has interacted with me for any measure of time that can say I have hate or disregard or discrimination in my heart for any people group."
Cochran's plight has drawn condemnation from a number of religious groups across Georgia including the influential Georgia Baptist Convention.
"This is appalling," said Robert White, president of the Georgia Baptist Convention. "This has everything to do with his religious beliefs."
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