Azara Blog: Catholic Church tries to blackmail the UK over gay rights

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Date published: 2007/01/23

The BBC says:

The head of the Catholic Church in England and Wales has said adoption agencies will close if they cannot opt out of new gay rights laws.

Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor has written to Cabinet ministers saying church teaching prevented its agencies placing children with homosexuals.

Forcing people to act against their consciences would mean discrimination on the grounds of belief, he added.

Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly, a devout Catholic, was reported at the weekend to be considering an opt-out which would cover Catholic adoption agencies.

The Equality Act, due to come into effect in England, Wales and Scotland in April, outlaws discrimination in the provision of goods, facilities and services on the basis of sexual orientation.

It works in a similar way to rules on sex and race discrimination.

However, Cardinal Murphy-O'Connor said Roman Catholic teaching about the foundations of family life ruled out the choice of homosexual adoptive parents.

He said the closure of seven agencies would represent a wholly avoidable "tragedy".

The so-called church teaching is just made up. Murphy-O'Connor could equally well claim they should only consider married couples. And only Catholics. And no doubt once upon a time he would have spouted about how church teaching allegedly said that only white people should be allowed to adopt children. Etc. If Murphy-O'Connor wants to be a bigot that is his right, but the UK government should not encourage him in his bigotry. His emotional blackmail should be ignored. (Unfortunately Blair's wife is Catholic, so Blair is likely to give these people an exemption.)

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