The Vatican is taking issue with the fight for marriage equality in Europe and around the world, saying that same-sex couples live in a “different reality” and continue to chase the “utopia” of equality.
L’Osservatore Romano, the official newspaper of the Holy See, printed a front-page editorial on Monday titled “Marriage Is Not a Contract,” claiming, according to a Google translation of the text, that same-sex couples live in some sort of “different reality” where they believe the foundations of society will not quake if an “utopia” of equality, which “caused such damage in the twentieth century,” is achieved.
Via Think Progress:Saying that marriage between a woman and a man is equal to that between two homosexuals is, in fact, a denial of the truth that affects one of the basic structures of human society, the family. We cannot base a society on these foundations without then paying a very high price as happened in the past when there was an attempt to achieve total economic and social equality. Why repeat the same mistake and chase after an unattainable utopia?
The Vatican’s editorial condemns same-sex couples adopting children, stating that this will only lead to “new forms of exploitation” in science, according to a Google translation.
The article also criticizes a piece that appeared in the French Catholic weekly Temoignage Chretien, which endorsed the country’s controversial gay marriage bill, according to Queerty. The Vatican says the French article seeks to only promote what is trendy, reports The Hindu Business Line. “Being Catholic is about much more than embracing fashionable cultural standpoints,” writes the Vatican.
The editorial follows Pope Benedict XVI’s declaration that same-sex marriage goes against nature and threatens justice and peace.
"There is…a need to acknowledge and promote the natural structure of marriage as the union of a man and a woman in the face of attempts to make it juridically equivalent to radically different types of union," he said during his World Day of Peace 2013 address Friday. "Such attempts actually harm and help to destabilize marriage, obscuring its specific nature and its indispensable role in society. These principles are not truths of faith, nor are they simply a corollary of the right to religious freedom. They are inscribed in human nature itself, accessible to reason and thus common to all humanity."
On Sunday, gay rights activists peacefully picketed in St. Peter’s Square in Vatican City during the pope’s weekly prayers to proest his anti-gay comments. An online campaign featuring photos of LGBT people with the phrase “I am a threat to peace” was also launched in Italy and has already posted thousands of images to its Facebook page.
Another day, another nominee for our 2012 Bad Faith Award. The former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey has actually spent most of the year talking himself into contention through his opposition to gay marriage and his warnings of anti-Christian persecution in Britain, but it would appear he has decided to up his game following the opening of the Bad Faith nominations process.
Because, surely, that’s the only logical explanation for why he would choose to say the following at an anti-gay marriage fringe event at the Conservative Party conference yesterday, with reference to Nick Clegg’s recent suggestion that opponents of the marriage reform are “bigots”:"Let us remember the Jews in Nazi Germany. What started against them was when they started to be called names. And that was the first stage towards that totalitarian state. We have to resist them. We treasure democracy. We treasure our Christian inheritance and we want to debate this in a fair way."
For analysis of quite why this statement is at best deeply ignorant and at worst staggeringly offensive, read this post by Guardian blogger and occasional New Humanist contributor Martin Robbins. And look out for the opportunity to vote for Carey in the Bad Faith poll later this month – the only question surrounding his place on the shortlist concerns whether we should include all the individuals who have made irrational statements in opposition to the equal marriage reforms, or simply put forward the Coalition for Marriage as a collective nomination. Let us know what you think in the comments.
Update: The Telegraph’s Tom Chivers (himself no fan of the former Archbishop) has looked at Carey’s comments in their fuller context, and suggested that critics have been wrong to attack him on this occasion. Take a look at his post and see what you think.
The religious stood together today outside of Chick-Fil-A’s nationwide.
More, in fact, at one time than we’ve ever seen waiting for a chance to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, or stand up for social outcasts whom society has marginalized… like the entire homosexual community.
You know, things Jesus actually told his followers to do.
Irony is a bitch.
Today, Christians stood up for what they call “traditional marriage”, even though most forms of traditional marriage in the Christian Bible are illegal in the US (and for good reason). And all this despite the fact that Jesus was conceived out of wedlock and grew up with (arguably) two fathers. Where does any of that fit into the Religious Right’s image of traditional family values?
Isn’t it weird to live in a so-called Christian nation that would have cut funding to programs Jesus’ own family would have greatly benefitted from? But I digress…
The larger question looming over this entire debate is: Where would that first century bastard-son-of-a-carpenter-turned-social-revolutionary even fit in our modern American society when it comes to the whole marriage debacle?
Does anyone out there really think he’d have been seen waiting in line for a (relatively adequate) chicken sandwich while simultaneously opposing equality? Probably not. In fact, that sounds like something that might hinder people from hearing the Christian message of love and acceptance. And he probably wouldn’t have been protesting on the other side of the parking lot, either.
Continue to read this article at An American Atheist
“Regarding the Archbishop’s sermons against same-sex marriage, my 14-year-old daughter said: ‘Well, Jesus had two dads and he turned out all right, didn’t he?”
A five-year-old girl is thought to have become the UK’s youngest victim of forced marriage.
She was one of 400 children to receive assistance from the government’s Forced Marriage Unit in the last year.
The figures have emerged as the public consultation into criminalising forced marriage in England, Wales and Northern Ireland comes to an end.
Amy Cumming, joint head of the Forced Marriage Unit, said 29% of the cases it dealt with last year involved minors.
"The youngest of these was actually five years old, so there are children involved in the practice across the school age range," she said.
To protect the child, the authorities have not disclosed details of the case or where the marriage took place.
But the case comes as no surprise to the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation (IKWRO), which deals with more than 100 cases of forced marriage a year.
"We have had clients who are in their very early teens, 11-year-olds, 12-year-olds, the youngest case we had was nine years old," said IKWRO campaigns officer Fionnuala Murphy.
Now the consultation on forced marriage has come to an end, IKWROs hope it will become a criminal offence.
"Our organisation is pro-criminalisation because we believe that it will empower victims to know that this is a crime, to stand up to their parents and to stand up for their own rights and it will enable them to come forward and seek help and say what’s happening to me is wrong."
Author Sameem Ali is all too familiar with the trauma of being a child bride - she was only 13 years old when she was taken to Pakistan by her mother on a holiday.
As a teenager she was excited about the trip, but when she arrived at the family’s ancestral village, she discovered she was to be married to a man twice her age, whom she had never met.
"The whole family turned up with an imam and they forced me into this marriage. I didn’t really understand what was happening at the time.
"I was only a child. There was no way I could say no. There was no support there whatsoever."
Eight months later she returned to the UK after suffering months of violent abuse.
"I was brought back to this country when I was 14 years old and pregnant," she said.
She eventually fled the relationship and is now happily married with two children and helps other young people at risk.
However, Sameem is concerned that making forced marriage a criminal offence will deter victims from speaking out.
"I think it will be detrimental to the victim. The victims will stop coming forward, because nobody will want to point the finger at their parents," she explained.
"The young person will not come forward if it’s a criminal offence. They will not stand up in court and testify against their parents."
In 2011 the Forced Marriage Unit helped deal with around 1,500 cases, but many more are thought to go unreported.
Forced Marriage Protection Orders were introduced in 2008 for England, Wales and Northern Ireland under the Forced Marriage (Civil Protection) Act 2007.
A potential victim, friend or police can apply for an order aimed at protecting an individual through the courts. Anyone found to have breached one can be jailed for up to two years for contempt of court, although this is classed as a civil offence.
The prime minister wants the law to go further and ordered a public consultation on making it a criminal offence in England, Wales and Northern Ireland to force a person to marry against their will.
In Scotland the breach of a forced marriage protection order is also a criminal offence in Scotland punishable by prisons.
Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone said the government would now look at all the arguments.
"We will now consider all of those views and responses to the consultation before we make a decision on the best way to protect vulnerable people.
"We are determined, working closely with charities and other organisations doing a tremendous amount in this area, to make forced marriage a thing of the past."
A decision is expected to be announced later this year.
This is an intersectional issue - both religious and cultural. Hence it’s appearance on this tumblog.
“The Catholic Church, indifferent and lethargic in its response to the sexual abuse of children, is now energised by gay marriage. Amazing.”
The Roman Catholic Church is planning to enlist the support of more than a million regular worshippers in opposition to Government plans for same-sex marriage.
Senior bishops are preparing to draw up a letter to be read at Masses across England and Wales when the Government consultation on plans to redefine marriage gets under way later this month, it is understood.
It would be only the second time in recent history that a joint pastoral letter on behalf of all Catholic bishops in England and Wales has been issued on an issue of political importance.
The move is being proposed as the debate over extending marriage to homosexual couples gathers momentum. At the weekend Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the most senior Catholic cleric in Britain, accused the Coalition of trying to “redefine reality” and branded the proposals a “grotesque subversion of a universally accepted human right”.
Although the proposals would not extend to Scotland, he argued that they would nevertheless “shame the UK in the eyes of the world”.
Cardinal O’Brien is one of only two British members of the College of Cardinals, the body which elects popes. Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, the former Archbishop of Westminster, remains a voting cardinal until he turns 80 in August.
The remarks drew robust responses from politicians including Harriet Harman, the deputy Labour leader, who accused the Cardinal of “scaremongering”. “I don’t want anybody to feel that this is a licence forwhipping up prejudice,” she said. Peter Tatchell, the gay rights campaigner, said: “If he supports marriage, the Cardinal should welcome the fact that many lesbian and gay couples want to get married.”
Meanwhile, Alan Duncan, the Conservative international development minister, who is in a civil partnership, said that the plans would not apply to religious marriage.
“I don’t think they need cause any upset for Cardinal O’Brien because they’re not really going to affect him,” Mr Duncan said.
But one of Mr Duncan’s Conservative colleagues, Peter Bone MP, argued that the parents and teachers who objected to promoting same-sex marriage in schools could be ostracised.
“If marriage is redefined, schools will have no choice but to give children equivalent teaching on same-sex marriage, even those children of a very young age, including those at primary school,” he wrote.
“So what will happen to parents who because of religious, or philosophical beliefs take their children out of lessons?
“Parents who object will be treated as bigots and outcasts, possibly excluded from being on the PTA [Parent Teacher Association], or from being a governor.
“Discriminated against and persecuted because they hold views that have been enshrined in our laws and have been the cornerstone of our society for 2,000 years.
“And what of the teachers who object to teaching about same-sex marriage. Will they face disciplinary action? How will it affect their careers?”
Five years ago, a pastoral letter issued by the then Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, helped secure the future of faith schools whose funding and status was in doubt at the time.
It’s 1am here right now, so I don’t have the mental wassname to appropriately respond to this nonsense. Suffice to say, fuck you British Catholic Leaders.
Former Metropolitan Police officer Brian Paddick has hit back at Cardinal Keith O’Brien’s comments on homosexuality.
The London Mayoral candidate has asserted that there is “no intellectual argument” against same-sex marriages.
Cardinal Keith O’Brien, leader of the Catholic Church in Scotland, accused the Government of arrogance ahead of a consultation on the issue this month.
Writing in The Sunday Telegraph, he claimed that plans for gay marriage were a “grotesque subversion of a universally accepted human right.”
He added: “The Government has suggested that same-sex marriage wouldn’t be compulsory and churches could choose to opt out. This is staggeringly arrogant.
“No Government has the moral authority to dismantle the universally understood meaning of marriage.”
But Paddick – who is gay – has hit back.
“Same-sex marriage should simply be a universally accepted human right for everyone,” he said.
“If we really believe in equality, there is no sound intellectual argument against gay marriage. There may be religious objections, as there are religious objections to equality for women, but that does not mean we should be ruled by them.”
Meanwhile, the UK gay Humanist charity the Pink Triangle Trust has also slammed O’Brian’s condemnation.
George Broadhead, the PTT’s secretary and veteran gay activist, said: “Given the Roman Catholic Church’s well-known views and policy on gay sexual relationships and rights, including Civil Partnership, not to mention Cardinal O’Brian’s previous homophobic outbursts, his latest are totally predictable. His contention that gay marriage would shame the UK in the eyes of the world is also bizarre.
"Has the cardinal not heard that gay marriage has already been legalised in no fewer than ten countries: Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Iceland, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden and The Netherlands? I am not aware that any of these countries have suffered shame or any sort of pariah status as a result. This just shows how out of touch with reality the Roman Catholic Church has become.”
Kirk Cameron, airing his bigoted views on homosexuality on British TV.
Here’s a trivia trick question that will throw future film and TV buffs for a loop: Growing Pains is a) the name of a popular 80s sitcom about an affluent family in Huntington, New York, or b) the documentary that actor/Old Testament fanboy Kirk Cameron’s gay children make about growing up under relentless pressure from their homophobic father to stay in the closet?
At one point during this disheartening interview, Piers Morgan bluntly asks Cameron to explain what he believes about gay marriage, and Cameron answers by saying that marriage is “almost as old as dirt,” that it was created in the Garden (that would be the Edenic garden and not that little solarium in the background of the kitchen set on Growing Pains), and that for reasons of its venerable old age, he would never attempt to redefine it.
As it turns out, the Piers Morgan interview dovetails nicely with a little polemic — charmingly titled “We Cannot Afford to Indulge this Madness” — that appeared in the Telegraph yesterday, in which Britain’s most senior
JacobiteCatholic, Cardinal Keith O’Hara, rails against his government’s move to consider permitting gay marriage in England and Wales, suggesting that it would be completely crazy, if not outright impossible, to redefine “marriage,” a word that has meant only one thing since antediluvian times. He writes,
But can we simply redefine terms at a whim? Can a word whose meaning has been clearly understood in every society throughout history suddenly be changed to mean something else?
That’s right — because words, once they’re written down, only mean one thing forever and ever. With so many examples to choose from of, say, Greek and Latin words that have most definitely mutated over the thousands of years they’ve had to experiment with different languages, one seems especially instructive in this instance: dogma, a Greek word that used to merely mean an opinion, or, literally, “that which one thinks is true,” and not, as it seems to mean to today’s religious nutjobs, a rigid code permitting the oppression and harassment of those with whom one disagrees. It might also bear mentioning that, while Cameron seems to think that homosexuality is “ultimately destructive to so many of the foundations of civilization,” the civilization that he’s a part of was conceived by a bunch of dudes who liked dudes, probably right after a symposium and right before a blowjob contest.
Kirk Cameron, an actor, a bigot, a homophobe. I’ve been aware of this guy for a number of years now, because of his bigoted views, the speeches and talks and writings that he gives.
Unable to give a straight answer to a straight question. Pontificating and evangelizing on British TV even. He’s also dead wrong.
Just as most theists talking about marriage, he appears to be under the impression that marriage has always been only a religious thing. When in fact religion (or more specifically in this case - Christianity) only got it’s claws into it a few hundred years ago. Marriage before then was a simple legal contract between families. For the most part, it is still a simple legal contract. For the most part, even when Christianity got in on it, it was still only a simple legal contract between families, it just started having a religious blessing attached.
But then, he’s a Young Earth Creationist. He thinks the world is only 6000 years old and that we are descended directly from Adam and Eve. Never mind genetics. He doesn’t get it.
There’s a video on this article, click link to view, or wait for the queue to spit it out.