Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Someone get this man a lesson in culture and sociology.

What do we have here?  A high ranking religious leader promoting bigotry?  When did this happen? 

The Archbishop of York, Dr John Setanmu, is telling people that whilst he's fine with homosexuals having a civil partnership, he thinks that they shouldn't get married and that is was not "the role of the government to alter social structures that had been in place for centuries".
"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"
Hmmm.  What is the definition of marriage, I wonder...
Marriage (or wedlock) is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. The definition of marriage varies according to different cultures, but is usually an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged. (-Wikipedia)
That sounds pretty cut and dry to me as far as definitions go.  So what's the problem with allowing gay couples to be married?  Well, according to Dr Sentamu and many other religious people from other faiths who share his view, marriage is a sacred union as endorsed by their God.  And since according to his mind that God hates men sticking their dicks up other men's arses, or women having scissor sex, these people should not be allowed to have their long relationships made into marriage unions, and thus "endorsed by God".

(On the vein of opposition to gay men and lesbians, why are more people of extreme faith against the former?  Is it because penises are going into poop holes and not vaginas?  Is it because lesbians are stereotypically thought of as page three models and therefore it's hot?  Seriously, I am curious to know why gay men are more hated on than gay women.)

Dr Sentamu goes another step further and compares the government's interference on marriage values a dictatorship.
"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."
Well, let's examine history on social change where the government was involved.  How about one that should be close to the Archbishop's heart - slavery and equal rights for black people.  Once upon a time, black people were thought of as lower than anyone with pale skin.  They were hunted and shipped out of their home countries like cattle, sold like property, abused, unheard, ignored.  It was a massive joke to suggest to a white man to let his slaves go free, or to give them a basic wage, or even just to stop sticking his boot in their faces.  Then what happened?  White people grew a conscience.  White people started recognising that it was wrong to abuse someone because of the colour of their skin.  White people spoke up and fought back for the rights of their fellow humans, for the sake of human decency.  Obviously, they were resisted.  They were scoffed at or accused of being "black lovers" like it was a sin (which it was thought of at the time).  There were fights, battles, wars.  And the thing with fights and wars is that they build up in scale.  The government would HAVE to get involved.  The government would HAVE to listen to their people.

As history has proven in the Western world, slavery was abolished but not without the backing of the governments.  Not without the changing of laws that allowed the atrocity to happen.  Yes, it took a very long time.  Even now, race crimes are not uncommon, but they are just that now - crimes.  You cannot deny a black person's basic rights to welfare, work, relationships, marriage based on the colour of their skin.  And that extends to other races as well.

How is that fight any different to now?  People are fighting in this day and age to help another disadvantaged group; the LGBT community.  They are still people, they are still humans.  You wouldn't know them to be any different to another straight person unless they told you.  And yet people still think it's okay to deny them the same rights a straight person enjoys, that it's okay to sneer at them, to abuse them, to kill them because they love the wrong gender.  The government has to get involved now because the public WANTS them to. 

The problem Dr Sentamu has with the government getting involved is that he knows the public domain is supportive of gay marriage. Hopefully in March, when the government has had their consultation regarding gay marriage, Dr Sentamu and the people who agree with this homophobic bigotry will see that social change can and will happen at a government level, but not because the Prime Minister is a dictator, but because the British public have voted for equal rights instead of religious privilage and bigotry. 

(Sourced from The Guardian)


  1. Anyone who blathers about how marriage has "always been between a man and a woman" is ignorant or lying. Both are the refuge of religious bigots.

  2. I posted briefly on this the other day. If you take religion out of the equation, gay marriage becomes a non issue. There are not nearly enough anti-gay marriage people, who do not cite religion as the reason for their views, to make a difference. Those that do exist would just be considered discriminatory if religion was removed from the equation.