Robert Hampton

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31st January 2012

Marrying Hate, Repent at Leisure
Posted by at 11.01pm | No responses | In the News

Some good old fashioned anti-gay opinions were spouted at the weekend from a senior figure in the Church of England, because there is apparently no more pressing social issue in the world today than two men kissing. This time it was the Archbishop of York, who said in a newspaper interview that, while civil partnerships were OK, gay marriage should not be introduced in the UK:-

“I don’t think it is the role of the state to define what marriage is. It is set in tradition and history and you can’t just [change it] overnight, no matter how powerful you are,” he told the Daily Telegraph.

“We’ve seen dictators do it in different contexts, and I don’t want to redefine very clear social structures that have been in existence for a long time and then overnight the state believes it could go in a particular way.”

Dr Sentamu fled Uganda during the rule of Idi Amin, so you’d think he’d be a bit more careful about comparing people to dictators. If the Church wants to stick to its narrow definition of marriage, I think it is wrong, but in a free society it should be free to do so. However, it cannot enforce these rules against the wider population who are not bound by the Bible (or specifically, Dr Sentamu’s interpretation of it). They should be free to marry whomever they want.

I agree with David Cameron on very little, but I hope he pushes forward with the gay marriage consultation in the face of a backbench revolt. Or should that read “revolting backbenchers”?

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