Conservative Christians in America say they condemn homosexuality because the Bible tells them to. They will be quick to tell you though that they love homosexuals and only want to see them led to a better way of life. Opposing Gay marriage, ordination, adoption, participation in the military, and all of that stuff is just loving behavior. They would not, for example, advocate the literal adherence to scriptural sentences of death. Would they?
The writers and signers of the Manhattan Declaration want you to believe that their anti-gay speech, anti-gay political stances, and anti-gay behavior is all innocuous "freedom of religion" stuff. The problem is that some of the same people who are presenting the dovish face of homophobia in the US are supporting the hawkish face of it elsewhere in the world.
The African nation of Uganda is on the verge of passing draconian new legislation that makes homosexuality punishable by life imprisonment. Something called "aggravated homosexuality", defined as any sexual contact between gays or lesbians where one or more of the parties has HIV, is punishable by death. Never mind that HIV in Africa is virtually exclusively a heterosexual problem.
This law is backed by a group calling itself "the Family". Major supporters of "the Family" include Anglican bishops Orombi and Akinola. Rev. Peter Akinola who is one of the primary signers of the Manhattan Declaration. Furthermore, a lot of money has been pouring into "the Family" from American evangelical churches - money which is being used to help get this law signed.
Some prominent members of the right in America have distanced themselves from their former allies in the African church over this. Rev. Rick Warren deserves some credit for saying he opposed the legislation and had cut off ties to friends of his who are behind it. Exodus International also wrote a letter saying mildly that the law is "unhelpful". Clearly there are some who see how the coincidence of these two movements is potentially detrimental to their cause in the US.
Here is the problem from my perspective - it appears that for some (I don't say all or even most), the "love the sinner/hate the sin" line is a facade. Some conservatives, among them prominent signers of the Manhattan Declaration, would probably support outright persecution of homosexuals if they thought it was politically viable in this country. I say this because they ARE supporting persecution of homosexuals in other countries where it is politically viable.
This is my question to conservatives who really believe this "love the sinner/hate the sin" stuff: is this what christianity looks like to you? Bishop Orombi believes all the things you say are fundamentals of the faith - virgin birth, Jesus' miracles, biblical inerrancy, bodily resurrection, substitutionary atonement, homosexuality is sin etc... Is he the kind of Christian you want to be? If so, count me out. I can't stomach the hypocrisy and hatred.