Equality Act: more on the GB SORs

Updated again Thursday afternoon

As expected, the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Birmingham, Vincent Nichols is leading the attack, see 11.03.07 ARCHBISHOP NICHOLS ASKS CATHOLICS TO WRITE TO THEIR MP ABOUT THE SEXUAL ORIENTATION REGULATIONS.

This was reported in The Times by Ruth Gledhill as Prelate fights gay adoption law.

Meanwhile Ekklesia reports that Faithworks stands by sexual orientation regulations

Rupert Ward has some useful comments on his blog in Christian Spin.

Today, Wednesday, Anglican Mainstream expressed these opinions.

Craig Nelson has factual information about some claims made concerning changes, and other comments in Government updates the regs – Christian groups gird their loins.

His earlier post More on the Sexual Orientation Regulations also has helpful information on the differences between the GB and NI versions of this, and other aspects.

Clive Scowen also has submitted his opinions to the House of Lords.

Christian Concern for our Nation a website of the Lawyers Christian Fellowship has published Government to rush SORs through House of Commons.

The written statement made by Ruth Kelly to the House of Commons on 7 March is available here.

Wednesday in the House of Commons, Peter Bone, an MP, raised this Point of Order.

A chap in Thanet named Simon Moores has this report of events in the House of Commons on Thursday.

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Göran Koch-SwahneErika BakerChristopher Shellmynsterpreost (=David Rowett)Cheryl Clough Recent comment authors
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Laurence Roberts
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Laurence Roberts

oh dear Rupert’s equivocations are very middle class het, and uninformed by real lgbt people.

Or real people with disabilities for that matter. He REALLY does need to inform him self about the disability movement in Britain, as well that of gays. As few people with a visual impairment, as lgbt people, would warm to his statement that being blind is not a moral problem, and nor is being gay !

And as for gay relationships (and blindness too, presumably) not being “God’s will” –” but anyway be nice to Them…”

SUCKS……

Dave
Guest
Dave

I don’t think the Archbishop is just worried about being obliged to consider people in CPs as adoptees. Surely Adoption agencies can still decide whether people in a gay partnership are suitable .. or not suitable? The trouble with the Regs is NOT that they protect people from unjust discrimination in the provision of Goods and Services on grounds of Sexual Orientation. That is obviously virtuous and noone in the UK seems to be saying that they want to do it!! The problem is the obligation to treat CPs the same as marriage, and the obligation to treat homosexual activity… Read more »

Craig Nelson
Guest

Has anyone counted up how many times the Christian Right use the term ‘unprecedented’? Everything is an unprecedented threat. It is though to be expected that a law outlawing discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation have the most impact on the people who believe the most passionately that they should be able to carry out such discrimination. In a similar way that banning fox hunting had the greatest impact on the people who hunted foxes and that the ban on smoking in public places affects people who passionately believe they should be able to carry on smoking in public… Read more »

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

“The problem is the obligation to treat CPs the same as marriage, and the obligation to treat homosexual activity as morally neutral. On both those issues the SORs are pure Ideological enforcement.”

Whereas allowing individual faith groups to impose their own moral judgements on people of any or no faith in a non-religious context is NOT ideological enforcement?

Of course adoption agencies must continue to decide the suitability of ANY potential adoptive parent. They just are not allowed to judge on the basis of religous prejudice that automatically wants to exclude a whole category of people.

Laurence Roberts...
Guest
Laurence Roberts...

I wish to thank Craig for his unprecedented post–it certainly draws the sting of panic and puts things into perspective for me.

Erika — I have never heard this put with such clarity and moral force, and so tersely. Thanks for it.

ruidh
Guest
ruidh

I’m glad that Anglican Mainstream has chimed in on this issue. Perhaps people will notice that their arguments are complete nonsense. The begin by using an unusual phrase — “a well founded religious belief”. A “well founded” belief is one for which there is some evidence. Perhaps not conclusive evidence, but evidence nonetheless. What is a “well founded religious belief”? What is particularly “well founded” about a religious belief? Do they think that they have some objective evidence? They continue “Plainly under the regulations [a B&B operator] cannot refuse this request if he has such a room available, however much… Read more »

Merseymike
Guest
Merseymike

Of course CP’s should be treated the same as mariage, because they are legally, the same, in terms of the rights and responsibilities attached

And of course gay relationships should be respected, and that does mean that discriminatory approaches such as those of the church, which do not afford moral equivalence, cannot be incorporated within this sort of civil legislation.

cryptogram
Guest
cryptogram

I post without comment the following extract from an Associated Press report, forwarded to me by a friend in the US. The president of the leading Southern Baptist seminary has incurred sharp attacks from both the left and right by suggesting that a biological basis for homosexuality may be proven, and that prenatal treatment to reverse gay orientation would be biblically justified. The Rev. R. Albert Mohler Jr., one of the country’s pre-eminent evangelical leaders, acknowledged that he irked many fellow conservatives with an article earlier this month saying scientific research “points to some level of biological causation” for homosexuality.… Read more »

Pluralist
Guest

I wonder if it is also the policy of Anglican Mainstream to bring back the Blackpool landlady of the 1950s and the use of Mr and Mrs Smith.

Anglicanus
Guest
Anglicanus

I have just read the Anglican Mainstream entry relating to the membership of the Committee which will review this legislation. Unusually, for Anglican Mainstream’s site, there is a comment added by a gentleman called Peter Ould, an Anglican clergyman. He asks why this committee has an 11% membership of gay people. Surely on a committee charged with scrutinising legislation to do with discrimination against homosexual people it is sensible to have at least an 11% representation. Does the Reverend Mr Ould want every committee simply to reflect the make-up of the population and not specific interest groups? If that is… Read more »

Kurt
Guest
Kurt

Isn’t Peter Ould a Sydney Calvinist?

Dave
Guest
Dave

Cryptogram wrote: “The Rev. R. Albert Mohler Jr., one of the country’s pre-eminent evangelical leaders, acknowledged that he irked many fellow conservatives with an article earlier this month saying scientific research “points to some level of biological causation” for homosexuality.” Dear Cryptogram, I think that it is probably true that there is an striong element of biological causation – though the evidence point to this being “predisposition” rather than a direct causal link. For instance Merseymike opoint to resuilts of survey from identical twins that reported that if one twin is homosexually orientated the other twin was on 55% likely… Read more »

Greg
Guest
Greg

Following from Cryptogram’s comment, Albert Mohler’s full argument about treating potentially gay foetuses can be found here:

http://www.almohler.com/blog_read.php?id=891

Greg
Guest
Greg

With regard to Anglican Mainstream’s hypothetical examples, why not talk about reality. For example, lets talk about the ‘Christian’ photographer, who when approached by two friends of mine about their Civil Partnership in Lincoln, screamed at them to get out, that they were an abomination and disgusting, blah, blah as she threw them out of her shop. This bigot expressed her ‘strongly held religious view’. I don’t object to her expressing it, we live in a democracy, but I do object to he pretending to offer a service, then using that as a platform to abuse people from.

Cheryl Clough
Guest

Well done Erika. You are playing this forum well, I’ve been enjoying reading your posts. Craig, and Ruidh picked up on “unprecedented” and “well founded” in some peoples’ postings. I’ve been having a giggle over some postings over the last week or so. “Authoritative” people now referring to Tanzania, Windsor, Lambeth and using “authoritative” words to put everything back in its rightful order. At one point someone asked for the babel fish interpretation of a posting. It’s rather fun, we can’t win the debate using ordinary every day language, so we’ll use “authoritative” escoteric language that only the suitably academically… Read more »

badman
Guest
badman

Peter Ould describes himself as PostGay on his website: http://www.peter-ould.net/?page_id=55

IT
Guest
IT

Unswayed by facts, Dave continues to demonstrate his breathless misunderstanding of complex genetic traits…..

Dave
Guest
Dave

Dear IT, Could you please help me, and everyone else, by being specific about what facts I am unswayed by (and why) and what complex genetic traits you think I don’t understand?..

ps I posted info and links to two other relevant papers here: http://www.thinkinganglicans.org.uk/archives/002284.html#comments on 14 March 2007 at 10:57pm GMT and have replied to the points that you made in that thread.

Laurence Roberts
Guest
Laurence Roberts

This question stands at the intersection of so many competing interests. Feminists and political liberals have argued for decades now that a woman should have an unrestricted right to an abortion, for any cause or for no stated cause at all. How can they now complain if women decide to abort fetuses identified as homosexual? This question involves both abortion and gay rights — the perfect moral storm of our times. Homosexual activists have claimed that sexual orientation cannot be changed. What if a hormone patch during pregnancy will do the job? As Gray suggests: In a culture that encourages… Read more »

drdanfee
Guest
drdanfee

Mr. Ould is a strong voice in the conservative StandFirm blog. Australian, it would seem, from his audio streamed accent. Rather an Australian clone of Mr. Sugden it might seem when one reads or hears some of their views. If you wish to see where the new Anglican realignment is supposed to head for all of us, just hang about the StandFirm blog for a while. I venture to guess it would open many people’s eyes, and some would feel they had finally found a level of religious certainty that would guarantee their getting to heaven, full stop, period. Especially… Read more »

Simon Sarmiento
Guest

I think some commenters are confusing Peter Ould with David Ould.

They are related but separate persons.

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

According to the Peter Ould website, the Oulds are twins, both into the ex Gay industry, both militants in the Anglican church War:

“An absolutely blinding post by my twin brother, showing how KJS has no idea how to interpret Scripture. Go here to read it

David Ould had this piece on Stand Firm just the other day:

http://www.standfirminfaith.com/index.php/site/article/2555

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

The Go here to read it link is this one:

http://www.standfirminfaith.com/index.php/site/article/2482

Dave
Guest
Dave

Göran wrote: “According to the Peter Ould website, the Oulds are twins, both into the ex Gay industry…”

Dear Göran, Peter says he is “PostGay” – not industrial and not an easy path!

Cheryl Clough
Guest

Laurence Your posting caused a mixed reaction SOME feminists and liberals have argued for women to have unrestricted access to abortions. On a personal level, I would feel that to be overstating the case. I do not agree with late term abortion – I consider that to be murder. Similarly, I find the middle trimester extremely disconcerting. I do not have a problem with the pill, or morning after pill – especially in cases of forced sex. It is simply another period, and I’ve known women to be months pregnant using both these forms of contraceptive. Which just goes to… Read more »

Christopher Shell
Guest
Christopher Shell

Hi Cheryl-
If late-term abortion is murder, what is the cut-off point beteween ‘late-term’ and not-so-late, and in what respect is the pre cut-off point baby a different individual from the post cutoff point baby?

A second question: Supposing the cut-off point were for example 24 weeks – anything close to 24 weeks would in your view be approximating to murder. In what way is it justified for someone to do something which by your own admission would be approximating to murder?

mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)
Guest
mynsterpreost (=David Rowett)

Christopher, I appreciate that in a binary universe the dividing line between ‘sin’ and ‘virtue’ is a sharp one. However, in the Christian tradition, moral complexity has long been acknowledged. As I have mentioned before, the RC concept of ‘double effect’ long ago permitted what were prima facie immoral actions if the alternative was a greater disaster.

Hard cases make bad law – the Church acknowledged this long before the civil authorities, and it’s odd to find Christians apparently ignorant of basic Christian ethical teaching, or only appying it in situations favourable to their own moral dilemmas.

Christopher Shell
Guest
Christopher Shell

Hi David Rowett-

??? When did I say there were no morally complex cases?

My point was quite a different one: namely, that I could not see how this particular one was complex. Normally, anything involving suffering or death of innocent children ranks as the most straightforward morally.

Erika Baker
Guest
Erika Baker

Christopher
and you say this is not a binary view?
All abortions are the murder of innocent children?
There are no abortions of insufferably damaged foetuses? There is a clear moral choice when either foetus or mother must die?
What if you have to choose between letting the resulting child suffer terribly or never be born?

I don’t want to start an abortion debate here, but even those who don’t like abortion normally admit that it’s a complext moral question!

Göran Koch-Swahne
Guest

Yes it’s a complex moral question, but those that try, successfully in the USA unsuccessfully in Europe, to make it an “issue”, don’t do it because abortion is complex or moral.

The “issue” is about w h o shall make the decision; the woman or a man in a position of “authority”…

Sexism.