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ANALYSIS: What is the Christian Institute?

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  1. Quote: In December 2006, Christian Institute Director, Colin Hart, told The Independent: “(Government minister) Peter Hain talks about equality. But he should read his own regulations, which elevate gay rights above all other rights for religious people, and rights on the grounds of age, sex and disability. It is a preferential status which will drive a coach and horses through religious liberty.”

    Oh oh, you mean we’re not being tolerant of intolerance? Why does this sound like the kind of political doublespeak Nick Griffin specialises in?
    This is why I jacked in religion years ago… partly the lack of evidence and the dogma but also the feeling that it was like joining a club that didn’t want me as a member. Gayness isn’t like a convenient on/off switch you can will yourself in or out of. How do these folks account for psychological denial if gayness is just something you try when you’re bored? If they don’t want me, the feeling’s mutual.

    1. “Gayness isn’t like a convenient on/off switch you can will yourself in or out of”

      A friend of mine thought they were gay but then it turned out after a few relationships they realised they weren’t, so subsequently switched on the heterosexual switch and are now happy. Odd that.

  2. Can any of the god freaks out there please quote me a truth from the most appalling work of fiction ever conceived by the human mind, the bible.A book which was recompiled several times over by one of the most despicable kings ever to sit on a throne, James of England.

  3. I think you should leaf through their resources page… Here’s one on why the age of consent should stay they same. Apparently were all having dangerous sex with hundreds of people and very likely to be paedophiles etc etc….. all based on “scientific studies”.
    It does alarm me that these people would work towards a recriminalisation of homosexuality if they could.
    http://www.christian.org.uk/pdfpublications/HYP.pdf

  4. What I dont understand is why do they want to ‘debate’ homosexuality? What’s to debate? Whether they agree with it or not – it’s here to stay (thank God, yes God I’m sure if she exists she loves us gays).

  5. It should be pointed out the tribunal argued to establish a victory based on the how they felt Islington Council had treated and handled their staff member concerning the issue. That is, the tribunal established that the woman was bullied and handled with bad behaviour during negociations concerning the issue. The victory hangs on the manner in which she was negotiated and handled not the legal principle concerning the actual gay / religious belief conflict.
    The principle of the law, which states that Islington Council must not discriminate against gay people in the work place and must legally provide a registration service to gay people remains. The principle of the law which states that Islington council must not discriminate against employing people because of their religion also remains. Islington Council is still legally obliged to interview and offer jobs regardless of peoples religious assiciations. However if the individual chooses to interpret and uphold a specific point of view, which of course, is unique to them, where other’s of the same religion may not hold that view, and this strongly held view causes issues regarding the breaking of the Law for both Islington (any) Council or in relation to the legal requirments of the duty of the job being undertaken, then that person should not be expected to continue with that job.
    While this woman remains holding a job whose remit is that she should act as registrar for the council, it is possible that by remaining in this position and refusing to carry out her duties towards gay people, that the law if being broken with regards the legal remit of duties within her post set down by the council and in terms of the Council promoting discrimination against gay people within the workplace.
    The issue touches on the difference between discriminating between someone because of who they intrinsically are, ie. inescapably and inhernetly same sex orientated and disciminating against someone because of how they form and hold a belief or idea in their mind.

  6. Robert, ex-pat Brit 11 Jul 2008, 12:45pm

    Now what would happen to a Gay hotel or restaurant owner who’s policies were to not accommodate christian bigots by hanging a sign to that effect simply because he or she did not subscribe to their religious beliefs? This is beyond a doublestandard.

  7. As a public servant, if she doesn’t want to serve the public, she should find another job.

  8. gendy says “The Government needs to reassert the national stance on equal treatment for gay people against this bizarre fringe group.A test of support for Gordon Brown – smiles in No.10 are one thing ,Gordon,action to slap down the Christian Institute crew is another – actions speak louder than words,Prime Minister.

    After all what is a none-native-borne nigger doing being paid as registrar in Islington?”

    I think the last comment shows the mind-set of gendy. That is offensive, racist and is not needed in any civilised society. He also wants to ‘slap down the Christian Institute crew,’ by which I take it that he wants to deny them the rights they have to free speech and equality of treatment under the law.
    In all his post he has not produced a scrap of evidence for his assertions. I wonder if the law should be applied to him for defamation and libel? I find it a pity that he appears incapable of arguing his case without inflamatory language.

    Likewise, Nicholson says “The issue touches on the difference between discriminating between someone because of who they intrinsically are, ie. inescapably and inhernetly same sex orientated and disciminating against someone because of how they form and hold a belief or idea in their mind.” It is not proven that homosexuality is inherent. In fact studies of twins indicate that it is not inherent or else twins would either both be homosexual or both not. There are many twins where there is one homosexual and one heterosexual. Since their DNA is identical homosexuality cannot be inherent or genetical. In the same was the fact that one twin is a murderer and the other is not shows that being a murderer is not inherent.
    You might like it to be inherent so you can avoid the thought that you are responsible for and answerable to your behaviour.

  9. It’s possible that gendy was making a joke about intolerance. May not be the best joke in the world, but the brusqueness of it in the context of a debate about intolerance suggests he was making a funny.
    Similarly, Chuckles may not be up to date with all the research on biological imperatives that could lead to predisposition towards homosexuality. DNA studies haven’t revealed a ‘gay gene’, that’s true. However, all that means is that a gay gene hasn’t been discovered – not that one doesn’t exist. Also, genes aren’t an absolute determinant of behaviours. Current thinking is that it’s the conditions in the womb that lead to a gay predisposition. Obviously, that could be a genetic potential being activated by physical environmental factors (varius hormones, etc). Either way, Nicholson’s statement about someone who is ‘inescapably and inhernetly same sex orientated’ fits in with most reputable scientific research at the moment.
    My essential problem with Chuckle’s comments, though, are that he/she seems incapable of working out the ramifications of free speech. Of course the Christian Institute – or any other organisation – should be able to make any commment they like so long as they adhere to incitement laws of the country they inhabit. Having said that, if they do say somethign that seems abhorrent or outrageous to others, then those others are equally free to say what they will about the Christian (or any other) Institute. I have the freedom of speech – I do not have the freedom to not be insulted or outraged. That’s the same for all of us.

    So, Chuckles, if I were to call you a wanker, not only would that be most likely correct in terms of current scientific studies of human behaviour, it would also leave me open to any reciprocal comment about my behaviour you would care to make.

  10. Just a couple of points on Chuckles’ comment. On gendy, yes, using racial epithets isn’t pleasant or necessary in this debate. Obviously, gendy was hammering home his/her point about intolerance with a joke about intolerance. Not a very good joke, but nonetheless a joke and as such displayed a sense of irony entirely missing from comments made about homosexuals on the Christian Institution’s site or in broadcast interviews from its various members. If gendy’s comments were put along side the comments about homosexuals on Fred Phelps’ Westboro Baptists’God Hates Fags’ site, then gendy (no matter how foolish) has a long way to go in learning how to be truly offensive. Having said that, yes, his/her comments were offensive.

    Secondly, on scientific research and twin studies, all that proves at the moment is that research hasn’t discovered a ‘gay gene’ at the moment, not that one doesn’t exist. Also, current scientific research seems to suggest that predispositions towards homosexual behaviour are determined by conditions in the womb. Whether that is because specific environmental factors in the womb (the presence and or amount of hormones, etc) activate a ‘gay gene’ or would have the same effect on any foetus regardless of genetic makeup is unknown at the moment. However, Nicholson’s comment about someone someone being ‘inescapably and inherently same sex orientated’ fits in with current scientific thought. As such, any gay man or lesbian woman should only be held accountable for their sexual behaviour in the same way a heterosexual man or woman should be. Good behaviour is always to be applauded – even if sexual orientation can’t be controlled. Please note, ‘good’ in that context does not equate to a set of biblo-centric ground rules, instead, it refers to socially accepted cultural norms of the time.

    I suppose my greatest objection to Chuckles’ post is his/her concept of freedom. Freedom of speech does not mean fredom not to be outraged or freedom not to be insulted. So long as one adheres to laws about incitement to hatred and slander/libel, one is free to say pretty much whatever one wishes. However, someone else is equally free to take exception and disagree with you in strong terms. Once you have exercised your freedom, you have to accept that someone else can exercise the same freedom and say things you vehemently disagree with. So, for example, were I to call Chuckles a wanker, it would fit in with current scientific thinking on most human behaviour, but it would also invite Chuckles to respond in kind – and I couldn’t really complain about that, could I?

    On a tangental point, I just wonder whether the Christian (and similar) organisations real objections to homosexual behaviour being a biological imperative come from the religious quandary they’d face: the ‘abhorrence of abortion’ or the ‘abomination of gay men and women’? I’d watch that moral debate with real interest.

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