Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the UK’s most senior Catholic, sets out his opposition to the Government’s plans to legalise gay marriage.
It is not really a surprise … we all knew he was clueless before he proclaimed this stance, he has simply confirmed it. What is bizarre here is that we find that a professional virgin who wears a dress and a silly hat is once again pontificating about sex.
The context here is that the UK Government is this month launching a consultation on same-sex marriage, asking the public whether it should be introduced in England and Wales. So why does he take such a blatantly immoral stance, how does he justify his opposition? He says …
Those of us who were not in favour of civil partnership, believing that such relationships are harmful to the physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing of those involved, warned that in time marriage would be demanded too. We were accused of scaremongering then, yet exactly such demands are upon us now.
Harmful!! … the true harm being done here is that he is interfering in the basic civil rights of people. The deployment of the word “spiritual” is a meaningless one that does not reference anything real, “spiritual wellbeing” is code for accepting the delusional belief that his imaginary friend is real.
He then goes on to claim ..
Since all the legal rights of marriage are already available to homosexual couples, it is clear that this proposal is not about rights, but rather is an attempt to redefine marriage for the whole of society at the behest of a small minority of activists.
Now that is weird, I’ve always thought that lying was considered a sin within Catholicism … and this is indeed one huge porky. Denying same-sex couples legal access to marriage and all of its attendant benefits represents discrimination based on sexual orientation, accepting it does not in any way redefine marriage, such a claim is simply not true.
What I’d also like to understand is why he thinks he has ownership of the institution of marriage, it belongs to all of us and it is society as a whole that will determine what marriage is, not him. He can of course believe whatever he wishes, and declare it in public, but by doing so he needs to appreciate that he will only end up bringing both himself and the institution he represents into further disrepute (if that is even possible).
In the Guardian we, quite rightly, find opposition being voiced to this belief-driven insanity …
A Home Office spokeswoman said the government believed that “if a couple love each other” and want to commit to a life together they should “have the option of a civil marriage irrespective of their sexual orientation”.
The equalities minister Lynne Featherstone is due to launch a consultation on the plans later this month.
Margot James, the first openly lesbian Conservative MP, criticised the “apocalyptic language” used by the cardinal and accused him of “scaremongering”.
She told BBC1’s Andrew Marr Show: “I think it is a completely unacceptable way for a prelate to talk.
“I think that the government is not trying to force Catholic churches to perform gay marriages at all. It is a purely civil matter.”
She added: “I think this sort of scaremongering is what it is, it is just scaremongering.”
Labour’s deputy leader, Harriet Harman, said she hoped the comments would not end up “fuelling or legitimising prejudice”.
She told the Andrew Marr Show: “We have had prejudice, discrimination and homophobia for hundreds of years. That doesn’t make it right.”
“I don’t want anybody to feel that this is a licence for whipping up prejudice.”
It is nice to see that there are some quite sensible folks out there.
I think however my favourite punchline just has to be the part of the article where the cardinal claims … “their attempt to redefine reality is given a polite hearing, their madness is indulged“. It is indeed more than a tad bizarre to find a chap claiming that pro-gay marriage stance redefines reality and is deemed to be madness … this from a chap whose full-time career involves persuading people that a large collection of religious fairy tales are really true.
What I do truly object to here is his complete lack of basic human empathy on the sole basis that they do not believe what he believes and do not have the same sexual orientation. Most of us might have left the dark ages behind, but alas, a few sad old remnants still cling on.