Gay marriage and the new bigotry

May 18, 2012 at 10:15 pm (blogosphere, Civil liberties, gay, Guardian, homophobia, Human rights, Pink Prosecco, religion, rights)

Guest post by Pink Prosecco

It is pretty difficult I think to make a rational case against gay marriage, and John Sentamu, writing in the Guardian, does nothing to buck that trend.

He begins by admitting that sometimes the church has been a bit tough on homosexuals: “But that baleful history does not diminish the need to speak the truth in love.”  That gives me the same bad feeling I get when reading a comment which begins ‘with all due respect …’   He goes on:

“I firmly believe that redefining marriage to embrace same-sex relationships would mean diminishing the meaning of marriage for most people, with very little if anything gained for homosexual people.”

 Well, it wouldn’t diminish it for me (and I am married) and in fact would make me feel a bit more cheerful.  He concludes that point:

“If I am right, in the long term we would all be losers”: Well, yes, of course – and if you are wrong, we won’t be.

He then starts to argue that society needs to respond “intelligently to differences” rather than treating everyone the same.  That’s true up to a point – if you have a disability and need some adjustment at work for example.  But Sentamu is using the rhetoric of anti-discrimination to justify – discrimination.  He goes on:

“To change the law and smooth out this difference on grounds of equality would force unjustified change on the rest of the nation.”

Why is it that opponents of gay marriage always end up talking as though someone was trying to force them into one?

He eventually meanders back to his anti-discrimination rhetoric:

The question for me is one of justice, and not equality. Justice is the primary category. It does not mean not treating everyone the same way, but giving everyone what they need or deserve.”

Sorry – I fail to see why I need or deserve marriage more just because I am not gay.

Finally: why did Socialist Unity feel the need to reproduce, without comment, this letter against gay marriage?  And why did it attract only two comments?  I suppose it mustn’t be a shibboleth.


  1. Jim Denham said,

    And how about this bizarre and incoherent rant from the now plainly bonkers Pilger:

    Can anyone explain what “However this is a civil and private matter; bourgeois acceptability is not yet a human right” actually means, in the context of the debate on gay marriage? Or in any other context, come to that.

  2. Jimmy said,

    Surely gay marriage is no worse than Papist Priests giving it to youngsters sunny side up.

  3. lostbutnotreturning said,

    i am amongst other things a gnostic christian.i read a statement/paper some years ago from a gnostic church denomination who’s attitude to gay another virtually started with”the soul has no gender”.you dont have to be religious or spiritual.carl jung talks about how mens subconscious is occuped by a single female anima and womens subconscious by mutiple men animus,which seems to make the same point really,only a dfferenet way.

    it seems to me this undercuts a lot of the nonsense.

    as does”live and let live”.

    it seems to me alll this bigotry and haterepresents the very antithesis of what marriage is suppossed to be about for most if not all of us-caring,protecting,serving,looking after and most of all LOVING each other.i do not mean to be romantic about it,but it does seem to me thatt we do need more love,and no bigotry or hatred.human love is better than no love

    the gospels and st.paul talk about love.

    the cathars,a”geretical”gnostic”sect”of 12th century france had an apposite saying that “a society that does not have love,has law”.st augustine said”love is the only law”….

  4. Matt said,

    That Sentamu fawned to the Murdoch empire just as everyone else was running away as fast as possible is a measure of the man:

  5. Clive said,

    Pilger’s column is indeed very weird. The argument that ‘there are more important things’, obviously, can be used regarding almost anything (since there’s always going to be *something* ‘more important’ than anything you happen to be talking about).

    But – worse than that – in this context it is, invariably in my experience, the first resort of the homophobe. It’s a very frequent strategy. And what it actually means is not just ‘this is less important’, but ‘it isn’t important at all’, or even (actually) ‘I don’t agree with it and homosexuals make me want to retch, but this argument saves me from having to say this explicitly’.

    Surely if something is right but less important than other things, the appropriate response is to support it so we can move on quickly to those other things.

  6. sackcloth and ashes said,

    ‘And how about this bizarre and incoherent rant from the now plainly bonkers Pilger’?

    Pilger’s rant is just another variant of the teenager’s complaint; ‘Why should I tidy up my room when the world is such a mess?’

    • bleerggghh commntaytoR said,

      s and a – I would love to really batter that fucker. Re-arrange his ugly mug.

      • bleerggghh commntaytoR said,

        Jurst to clarify, it is sackcloth I want to clobber.

      • sackcloth and ashes said,

        Ooh, I’m scared. Will the Mackem wants to give me a slap.

        You’d have to dry him out first, though, and that would take longer than draining a marsh.

  7. Chris said,

    Least Pilger doesn’t quote the same old crap about Milan Kundera. The old get needs a good slap.

  8. Faster Pussycat Miaow! Miaow! Miaow! said,

    Disingenuous much?

    In his article Pilger forgets to mention that the ‘problem’ with the al-Nakba rally was the proposed march route around the streets of the central city at (already grid-locked) evening peak hour.

  9. Faster Pussycat Miaow! Miaow! Miaow! said,

    And since Pilger brought up the subject of marriage equality in Australia (and invoked the classic homophobe’s excuse – there are more important things to worry about), it’s worth noting the bizarre position of the current government. Despite a two thirds majority of people in favour of marriage equality, the PM (an atheist in a de facto relationship) has stated her implacable oposition to marriage equality based on her heretofor unknown belief in ‘traditional family values’. The triangualations of William Jefferson Clinton have nothing on the spineless wonders.

    Marriage equality may be a gesture, but it is gesture with no social cost which lays down a marker and further sharpens the line between those who are concerned with the human and those who are anti human.

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