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Thursday, 8 March 2012

Self or selfless?

The current debate on gay marriage ignores an important aspect of marriage - children. Children may not be in the minds of all gay or lesbian couples but if they are, they ignore the fact that it is normal for a child to have a mother (female) and a father (male). 

In probably the most high profile case, Sir Elton John and his partner have admitted that their son "faced 'challenges' and potential 'double' stigma as he grew up and have consulted counsellors to find out the best way of dealing with any potential problems." Hardly surprising when the boy's 'mother' (and possibly his biological father) will be 84 when Zachary Jackson Levon Furnish-John is 21 and his father (also possibly his biological father) is in his 70th year and both are/were male. In the US there was another bizarre story of a pregnant father giving birth to a bouncing baby girl. These sort of cases are so far removed from normality that they highlight the absurdity of change for no apparent reason other than self-gratification. I want, therefore I must have, no matter what the consequences.

Fresh from his Review for the Archbishop of Wales who appears to be somewhat accident prone in his choices, the liberal-minded former bishop of Oxford, Lord Harries of Pentregarth has stepped into the debate with the suggestion: "Instead of at first opposing civil partnerships, and then only accepting them grudgingly with gritted teeth, they should have welcomed them warmly from the first and immediately proposed services of commitments and blessing in church. They should do this even now." Few people are any longer interested in what the Anglican Church has to say but it will be interesting to see what trendy recommendations Lord Harries comes up with for the Church in Wales to hasten its further decline.

Many religious and non-religious heterosexual people supported civil partnerships despite reservations that some participants sought to have their partnerships seen as a marriage. In the church this has become a familiar pattern of give a little, grab the lot. Spurious arguments about equality have seen women's ordination and liberal sexuality take more bites out of the apple until there is nothing left but a barely recognised core. The Anglican Communion is now in its death throws as the Anglican Covenant attempts to paper-over the cracks. For some odd reason, once a band wagon starts rolling people jump on for fear of being left behind and branded yesterday's people, many clergy included. 

PM David Cameron has been followed by the Leader of the Opposition Ed Miliband in support of so-called gay rights but in reality it has more to do with electoral advantage than ethics or conscience. By implication Cabinet Minister Francis Maude now associates family values with being nasty!  There is a moral here. Trendy desires have done the Anglican Church no favours in her drive to become more relevant to societyWhat the country needs is strong leadership based on traditional values instead of pandering to current whims which favour self over selflessness.

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