Equality Texas issued the following statement this afternoon in response to the hate crime involving a death threat that was painted on a gay couple’s porch in the Texas Panhandle:

Joshua Harrison and Jeremy Jeffers should not have to live in fear in their own home simply because of their sexual orientation. No Texan should ever have to live in fear of violence because of their sexual orientation or gender identity/expression.

The Clarendon Enterprise recently published an advertisement from the Clarendon Church of Christ entitled “The Homosexual Movement.” In the ad, Minister Chris Moore erroneously equates homosexuality with pedophilia and polygamy.

Clarendon Church of Christ Pastor Chris Moore is entitled to his own beliefs, and his freedom of speech is protected by the United States Constitution. However, it is a fact that when people teach or preach homophobia and anti-gay rhetoric, it can inflame people to the point of violence.

Equality Texas urges Donley County Sheriff Charles “Butch” Blackburn to conduct a thorough investigation of this bias-motivated incident. Anyone with information about this crime should contact the Donley County Sheriff’s office at 806-874-3533.