Pressure from homosexual activists has forced the recently appointed chef de mission for the United States at the London Olympic Games to resign from the position.

Peter Vidmar, a former Olympic gymnastics gold medallist and now a prominent motivational speaker, participated in a rally supporting Proposition 8 and donated $2,000 to the cause. The successful Californian referendum amended the state’s Constitution to provide that marriage is only between one man and one woman.

Vidmar, a Mormon, made no attempt to hide his religion or his support for Proposition 8, and said it was irrelevant to his role representing the US Olympic team as their head. The United States Olympic Committee chairman praised Vidmar as a “natural leader and an extraordinary individual”. But his appointment was immediately criticised by homosexual groups. Vidmar felt compelled to resign amidst the controversy, stating that he did not want his presence to “become a detriment to the US Olympic family”.

This is another example of the intolerance pervasive through much of the homosexual movement. Any dissent from their activist agenda is regarded as “bigoted” and “homophobic”. This disdain of different opinions quashes freedom of opinion and religious beliefs and tramples freedom of speech.

This case is disturbing because homosexual activists seem intent on driving from public life anyone who does not agree with them.

This is not the first time that their radical agenda has defeated freedom of speech. Apple has pulled two applications from its iPhone, one from the pro-marriage group Manhattan Declaration and another from Exodus International, which offers support to homosexuals trying to leave the lifestyle. Potential Miss USA winner Carrie Prejean lost the crown due to her statement that she believes marriage is for a man and a woman.

While not as vocal in Australia, similar bullying resulted in ANZ and IBM pulling advertising from Online Opinion as a result of one pro-traditional marriage article amongst many articles arguing for same-sex marriage. Online Opinion stopped accepting articles in support of real marriage as a result of this bullying.

Vidmar’s case is concerning to anyone who values free speech and freedom of religion. The minority whose complaints have led to these situations does not represent the entire homosexual community, let alone the majority of the population. It is ironic that a group which has fought for increased tolerance is now so vocally intolerant of anyone who expresses a different view.

The global nature of homosexual activism raises serious questions about what will happen to freedom of speech in Australia should the activists succeed in having marriage redefined.