(I’d like to quote an article from LifeSiteNews.com and follow it with some brief thoughts
British PM ~ No Religious Exemption Forcing Provision of Goods and Services to Gays
MP’s will not be allowed free vote on issue
By Hilary White
LONDON, January 29, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) – British Prime Minister
Tony Blair has announced today that there will be no exemptions
possible for Catholic adoption agencies who attempt to refuse services
to homosexual partners.
“I start from a very firm foundation. There is no place in our society
for discrimination,” Blair said. “That’s why I support the right of gay
couples to apply to adopt like any other couple.”
“While views obviously differ, everyone is agreed that above all the
interests of the children and particularly the most vulnerable children
must come first,” he added.
Blair is expected to announce a “transition period” after the SOR’s
come into general effect to allow Churches to become accustomed to
compromising their beliefs. Blair said the rules will not come “fully”
into force until the end of 2008. In the meantime, Catholic agencies,
he said, had a “statutory duty” to refer homosexual couples to other
agencies. Blair also added that the House of Commons Labour MP’s would
not be allowed a free vote on the issue.
The PM’s decision has been expected since last week to be in line with
his cabinet who, it was said, were appalled and in a state of near
revolt over the possibility that he would allow Catholics to act
according to their religious principles.
Blair’s announcement comes in the midst of what some are calling the
most serious Church/state crisis in Britain in a century. It also comes
at the end of Blair’s long tenure as Prime Minister and leader of his
party with polls showing slipping support for Labour.
The recently-passed Equality Act’s Sexual Orientation Regulations
(SOR’s) specify that no one may “discriminate” against homosexuals in
the provision of goods and services, including in religious schools,
adoption and social aid agencies, hotels or rental facilities.
Last week, the head of the Catholic Church of England and Wales, Cormac
Cardinal Murphy O’Connor, addressed a letter to MP’s saying that
Catholic adoption agencies, that handle the bulk of the “difficult”
cases of child adoptions, would be forced to close instead of allow the
government to coerce their religious conscience.
The controversy between the government and the Catholic Church over the
impending implementation of the SOR’s had by the weekend descended into
name-calling with some British MP’s dusting off some of Britain’s
nearly-forgotten traditional anti-clerical and anti-papal slurs.
Cardinal Murphy O’Connor responded today saying he was “deeply
disappointed” at the decision. “We are, of course, deeply disappointed
that no exemption will be granted to our agencies on the grounds of
widely held religious conviction and conscience,” he said.
“We look to the forthcoming Parliamentary debate to address some of the
fundamental issues centred on the well-being of the child, whose needs
must always be put first.”
British Catholics can expect little from a change in government. The
head of the opposition Tories, David Cameron, announced that he also
does not favour an exemption for Catholic or other religious agencies
or services. He said, however, that his party members would have a free
The opt-out proposal had the support of some Jewish and Muslim groups,
as well as the Church of England’s leadership, Archbishop of Canterbury
Rowan Williams and John Tucker Mugabi Sentamu, Archbishop of York.
“I start from a very firm foundation. there is no place in our society for discrimination,” Blair said. Apparently, this Pontius Pilatician doesn’t seem to understand that to discriminate means “too choose.” In its classical meaning it referred to an act of judgement or choice in accoprdance with right reason and morality. To act towards or choose one thing over another for any reason is to engage in a form of discrimination. What classifies the act as just or unjust discrimination is the morality (or lack thereof) underlying it. Mister Blair talks about the firm foundation he starts from, that there can be no discrimination in his society, yet it is clear his statement is a begging of the question.
“The controversy between the government and the Catholic Church over the impending implimentation of the SOR’s had by the weekend descended into name-calling with some British MP’s dusting off some of Britain’s nearly-forgotten traditional anti-clerical and anti-papal slurs.” How firm is the foundation Mister Blair claims to be starting from-that there can be no discrimination in his society- when his fellow advocates for the SOR’s act are clearly doing operating from anti-Catholic bigotries?
“While views obviously differ, everyone is agreed that above all the interests of the children and particularly the most vulnerable children must come first.” This is just so much horse manure. The SOR’s act has nothing to do with children up for adoption, its only concern is the interests of the gay lobby. the children’s well-being never factored into the act. Blair is here just giving lip service to the concerns of his opponents. Here is some testimony from some people who are growing or have grown up in same sex homes. And here are some facts from psychological studies.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church states this: “The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every UNJUST discrimination in their regard should be avoided” (2358 my emphasis). Is it unjust not to allow two people of the same sex to adopt a child and thus form an un-natural family? Is it unjust not to allow a same sex couple to adopt a child because, as is well known, same sex relations tend to be much more prone to violence than heterosexual ones; not to mention much more promiscuous as well?
For more stats and figures, go here.