SALT LAKE CITY — LGBT activists' next goal is legalizing pedophilia, Pastor Rafael Cruz — father of Republican senator and presidential candidate Ted Cruz — told BuzzFeed News on Wednesday.
“I think that’s the next thing that they’re going to push, to try to legalize pedophiles,” Cruz said. “Pedophilia, you have all these laws to forget about — we have laws on the books about statutory rape. You have to basically throw away the statutory rape laws to legalize pedophilia.”
Cruz spoke with BuzzFeed News following a plenary panel on “Marriage and the Family” at the ninth World Congress of Families, a global summit bringing together social conservative activists held this year in Salt Lake City. Cruz's official biography describes him as the director of Purifying Fire Ministries, a professor of “Bible and Theology,” and the president of Kingdom Translation Services.
A member of the audience asked Cruz about the link between LGBT rights and pedophilia during the question and answer period.
“Can you comment or include in your presentation the damage that is being done by the LGBT and what they have done to partner with the pedophilia and the 3 million children a year that are victimized by them?” asked the man, who identified himself as Pastor Martin of Dayton, Ohio, with a group called Protect the Innocents.
Cruz responded by warning of what he said was the danger of nondiscrimination laws such as one enacted in Houston in 2014. Opponents succeeded in getting it put to voters in a referendum which will be held next Tuesday.
“We have a lot of apathy and a lot of ignorance. But we need to be cognizant of something that is called sexual orientation and gender identity ordinances — SOGI ordinances,” he said. “SOGI ordinances are very stealthily being promoted into a lot of communities like the one in Houston. We need to be very aware of what’s happening in the city council level passing these SOGI ordinances which are actually promoting this sexual orientation and gender identity to be part of the curriculum in public schools.”
He suggested in response to another question that public school education harms children.
“Unfortunately public school in America is now, with Common Core, programming children with all this secular humanism,” Cruz said. “If you have children in public school, you either have to take the time to deprogram them from all the brainwashing that they’re getting in the public school, or you have to take them out of public school, home school them, or put them in a Christian school.”
In a statement, Janice Shaw Crouse, the executive director for the World Congress for Families IX, distanced the organization from Cruz's remarks, writing, "While Pastor Cruz’s remarks may represent his opinions, they are not those of the World Congress of Families. Collectively, the World Congress of Families’ agenda advocates for life and the natural family in a civil, constructive and transparent way."
In his prepared remarks, Cruz said the United States “is the only country on the face of the earth that was founded on the book of God,” and urged activists to “take the leadership to exalt the name Jesus Christ in america to make sure that it once again becomes that ‘shining city on a hill.’”
In response to a follow-up question to the place of non-Christians in his vision, he said only Christians could fully understand these foundational concepts.
“If you do not have a relationship with Jesus Christ than it is practically impossible to really understand the foundations or the concepts of the Word of God,” he said.