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Doctor removed from adoption panel for refusing to consider gay couples

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  1. Peter G. Brown 20 Jul 2009, 11:42am

    This woman is not a Christian – she is a bigot. While she is more than welcome to hold her personal views, I find it disgusting that she tries to justify her bigotry by claiming that her faith in Christ is the reason for them. He would have no part in this.

  2. So she has been removed from a job that she doesn’t get paid for? It’s not like it’s affecting her ability to earn money and pay her bills, not really seeing her problem here.

  3. Individuals who fail to uphold the equalities laws, whatever their religious or other beliefs may be, should not be permitted to occupy any position in which they can influence in any way the proper observance of such laws.
    The woman concerned should not be employed as a paediatician for it is possible that her religious beliefs might interfere with the proper performance of her duties as a doctor.
    Ideally, she should be struck off by the General Medical
    Council.

  4. As has happened before, if this doctor can’t carry out their duties without prejudice then they shouldn’t be in that job. So, the right decision has been made. Plus its got nothing at all to do with her christian beliefs, she’s just yet another bigot using her beliefs as a feeble excuse.

  5. The worrying aspect of all this is what happens if a gay couple take their child to her as a paediatrician.

    If she has an automatic bias against same-sex parents and regards
    their ‘lifestyle’ as an insurmountable problem, she’s automatically ignoring the best interests of the child as per the professional requirements of her occupation and substituting her own religious beliefs.

    Although I give her kudos for abstaining on decisions at the adoption panel, it strikes me that there could be a more ingrained problem here. Really, the ethics committee of the college of paediatricians ought to investigate.

  6. I think that offsetting ones personal responsibilities on the word of a fictitious deity and a 2000 year old work of fiction is wrong.

    However, I personally have to agree with her as to why I would not support gay adoption:

    “I don’t feel that placing children for adoption with same-sex couples is the best place for them. Mothers are more nurturing and fathers are more challenging and the combination of both is best for the development of a child. The children of gay adoptive parents are also more likely to be bullied at school, on top of being singled out as different because they are adopted. As a Christian, I don’t believe it’s an appropriate lifestyle and I don’t believe the outcomes for children would be as good as if they were placed with heterosexual couples.”

    I think she has some very strong points to be made here, but I just wished she’d actually had the courage of her convictions to say it was her own opinion, and not bring God into it. That’s what has ultimately sunk her argument.

  7. Edward in Los Angeles 20 Jul 2009, 12:51pm

    Dear RobN…it really doesn’t matter whether or not you would support gay adoption. There are 6 billion 700 million people on the planet and your opinion is infantiscimle. If you don’t support gay adoption, that just makes you a bigot too. Your post above me was a masterpiece of duplicity. Why don’t you just come out and say that you don’t want gay people to be parents like the good Dr. on the panel? Christianity has become a code word for bigotry thanks to people like you. At least in the good book, Jesus spoke of respecting laws and respecting each other…and if you don’t “support” gay adoptions or “feel like it’s an appropriate lifestyle” then you are respecting neither the law nor me. There’s an old adage, you know, that says: spend more time judging yourself than judging others and you’ll be a better person. That’s advice you and the Christians like you who feel you would make better parents than a gay person should take. After all, in the U.S alone, 51% of all marriages end up in divorce and children are walking into classrooms with guns, blowing away teachers and classmates. Is that what you call good parenting? Or don’t you read the news? It hasn’t occurred to me until now that perhaps the universe has changed the tide of thinking and created an atmosphere of acceptance towards gay marriage…as an antidote to the problems in todays society due to bad parenting! And if I think further, quite frankly I, as a gay man, don’t APPROVE of the state of parenting that heterosexuals have done in recent memory! But then…with 6 billion 700 million people on the planet my opinion is infantiscimle~

  8. RobN (Comment 6)

    Just last week Terry Prendergast, the chief executive of Marriage Care, a marriage charity which has strong links to the Catholic Church, said that there is no evidence that children do better with heterosexual parents.

    Why do you want to stop people who can, and indeed do, provide a loving, caring home for children in need of one?

    One of Dr Matthews reasons for objecting to same sex couples adopting is because of the homophobia that the children will face at school. Surely, in that case, the thing to do is to address the issue of homophobia in schools, not stop loving, caring people dedicating their lives to looking after children.

    Unless, of course, you think that homophobia in schools is ok.

  9. This is the kind of thing that will turn on us. I disagree with her views, but she was willing to abstain. Why fire her? Are we that different from the bigots, when we engage in the same behaviour.

  10. Robert, ex-pat Brit 20 Jul 2009, 1:21pm

    The woman is out of touch. To say that mothers are more nurturing is tantamount ot saying that men (fathers) can’t be. Absolute rot! In any event, whether she gets paid or not, if she’s not a private physician then she’s getting paid by the government for her regular job as a doctor and on that premise, she shouldn’t be working in the public sector at taxpayers’ expense if her religious bigotry interferes with her performing her job. I assume that it does given her position in this instance. Nobody should be above the law, not even religious cultists, otherwise we’re not living in a democracy but a theocracy.

    Another thing, why do these bigots insist that ours is “lifestyle”, as if we choose to be gay? Does she and every bigot like her refer to heterosexuality as a “lifestyle”? I think not. Maybe its time we did, to give them a dose of their own hate medicine. Religious cultism is about hate after all.

  11. Commander Thor 20 Jul 2009, 1:36pm

    The acid test is “Can we apply the same argument to black or left handed people?”. Her arguments wouldn’t hold for either, so it should not be allowed to hold for gays.

  12. Applause to Alan. That’s the point that needs to make. If the adopted children of gay parents get bullied that’s no reason to stop adoption. We have to fight the bullying and when gay adoption becomes more mainstream and less of an issue the bullying will die off.

    In response to Dr. Matthews, not all mothers are nurturing and not all fathers are challenging. That’s a stereotype. Should we take kids away from all single parents too and give them to heterosexual couples? I don’t understand why people fly in the face of logic and reason and just make up their own view on the world.

    I wish Christians would stop using their faith as an excuse to hate LGBT people. A person wearing a mixed thread jumper (banned in Leviticus 19:19) with a tattoo of the cross (L 19:28), wearing gold/pearls (Timothy 2:9) who eats pork/shellfish (L 11:10) and shaves (L 19:27) will quite happily quote Leviticus 18:22 “You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female; it is an abomination.” as proof that homosexuality is illegal.

    Also with the nuances and mistranslations of the Bible and the unclear references to Homosexuality (or is it prostitution/rape/pederasty/rape? depends on the translation and the original Hebrew can be translated many ways) in the New Testament, I can not subscribe to the belief that if you believe in God you must hate/punish gay people!

    Children need to grow up with love, so why keep them in foster homes or with unfit parents, when there’s a perfectly suitable gay couple hoping for the chance to adopt. Glad she got retired form the board!

  13. correction: last word in third paragraph should be “immoral” or “sinful”

  14. If she takes the Bible literally then she is a doctor who would have no problem endangering the lives of her patients by prescribing the same antibiotics as 40 years ago on the grounds that the bacteria would not have evolved in the meantime.

    Otherwise, she is just yet another tedious pick n mix bigot.

  15. Justin Hinchcliffe 20 Jul 2009, 2:22pm

    Tolerance is a two-way street! As others have noted, she abstained when she could have done otherwsie. Ivan, is “bigot” your favourite word?

    For Christ’s sake (no pun intened), let’s stop calling people “bigots” for daring to have different views from our own (on that point, it’s worth noting that many gay men and women oppose gay adoption on the grounds the doctor gave)

  16. So the problem was that she was removed from her position on a panel where she had declared she just intends to abstain?

    Um; if she wants to help, why not simply step down and let someone who is committed to participating in ALL the cases step up – having a panelist who just doesn’t vote could give rise to all king of costly, lengthy prodecures resolving split decisions?

  17. marjangles 20 Jul 2009, 2:57pm

    I agree with PM, if she feels that she is unable to adjudicate on all cases due to her own personally held beliefs then she should have stepped down on her own as soon as she realised the conflict. Ultimately she wasn’t even prepared to consider whether a gay couple may be good parents, she immediately drew the conclusion that because they weren’t a heterosexual couple then they should not receive any services from her in relation to the adoption process. Whatever her reason for that, it is discrimination. Again, she is seeking special rights due to her religion, she wishes to impose her own conditions based on her religion within her terms and conditions of employment. That can’t be acceptable and wouldn’t even be considered had she not used her religion as an excuse.

  18. Good grief, what a nasty piece of work. This woman should have been struck off over the abortion episode and shouldn’t even still be able to call herself a doctor!

  19. I acknowledge and applaud her for abstaining from decisions concerning same sex parents (instead of secretly hiding her bigotry and just voting against them) BUT outdated religious views (based on a work of fiction) should not be given any respect or influence when it is affecting other people’s lives. The right decision was made.

    The influence given to Christianity, and the rapidly expanding Islam (which is even more homophobic than the first), should concern us all and be challenged at every opportunity. People are entitled to religious beliefs but must never be allowed to hide behind it or use it as an excuse for hatred.

  20. More superstitious nonsense.

    Look, this is like a vegetarian going to work in an abbattoir, then refusing to do said work, as it is against their beliefs. I do wish judges would start telling people who bring cases like this to go f*** themselves.

    If you don’t want to do the job, then don’t do it. If you want to go talk to an imaginary human/being/deity inside your head – feel free, I won’t stop you, but superstitious beliefs have no place in modern medicine.

    Although I cannot see what this particular silly women is complaining about, as the job is unpaid anyway.

  21. If you want to see just how good heterosexual ‘straight’ parents can be, just tune in to the Jeremy Kyle show every morning.

  22. Straight religious freaks often whinge that their is a ‘gay agenda’ and a ‘gay mafia’. So far as I know (maybe nobody told me), the gay mafia does not really exist.

    Could I propose someone starts the gay mafia, so we can bring about the social change we need, so none of us needs to put up with this bigotted religious claptrap anymore.

    Honestly, I’m really just sick and fed up with the utterly hateful bilge coming from religious freaks.

    Why can’t they do something useful, like worry about child starvation or child poverty, or knife crime, or rape. Why do these religious freaks have such an issue with homosexuals, who by most reckoning are amongst the least aggressive or least violent people on the planet.

  23. Mihangel apYrs 20 Jul 2009, 5:16pm

    I would be concerned that, as a paediatrician, she may have prejudices when dealing with gay parents and their children: would she start from the viewpoint that they were potential abuses?

  24. The woman’s superstition has impaired her judgement and immunised her against scientific evidence; she is not fit to hold her position; the council was right to dismiss her.

  25. The reasons she gives for not doing the job properly are not religious ones; she disagrees with the legislation because of her personal prejudices. She has no case.

    Eveni they were expressed as a religious objection, there is no human right to discriminate against minorities because of ones religious beliefs.

    I hope her backers spend loads of money on this, because they will lose.

  26. Readers should be aware that the Justin Hinchcliffe above who has defended this nasty creature and tried to excuse her position with the preposterous argument that it’s OK for her to be a bigot because not all LGBT people agree with LGBT adoption is, amongst other things, the prospective Conservative candidate for Tottenham, author of Hunter and Shooter and someone who has attacked Amnesty International for supporting the right of women to have an abortion.

    People will draw their own conclusions about whether he is typical of what we can expect from his party should they win the next election and also whether it is ethical for a politician seeking votes to come on here pretending to be an ordinary poster.

  27. Ian M Laughlin 20 Jul 2009, 7:09pm

    Looks like Matthews is gearing up to try and present herself as a “Lillian Ladele”, victimised by the secular/PC/leftwing/feminist/homosexual establishment (delete as applicable). It’s a facade that rather quickly falls apart, thanks to Pink News reporters’ diligent research: Matthews is already linked into extremist organisations and has a history of politcial and legalistic manoeuvering, as Ms Michele Johnson discovered.

    I suggest that to be prepared for Matthews’ litigation, a coalition of secularist, birth control, LGBT and other interested organisations needs to come together to back Northampton Council’s decision and combat the propaganda from Matthews and the CLC.

  28. Robert, ex-pat Brit 20 Jul 2009, 7:58pm

    So in her distorted view of the world and of life like most who belong to a religious cult that condones her views, she’d be happy to support the adoption of a child by a straight couple in which one or both physically harm or sexually abuse that child just because the parents are straight and more “suitable”? Its tantamount to saying that straight widows and widowers with children should be compelled to marry just so the child can have a mummy and a daddy. Her argument is flawed. Not all straights make good parents even when they are the parents of children, nowadays, they drag them up with no values or responsibilities, teach them how to hate and discriminate and bully gay people, all learned behaviour, a product of the “straight” home in the 21st century UK; but that’s ok of course in this bigot’s eyes because they’re straight.

  29. “I don’t feel that placing children for adoption with same-sex couples is the best place for them. Mothers are more nurturing and fathers are more challenging and the combination of both is best for the development of a child. The children of gay adoptive parents are also more likely to be bullied at school, on top of being singled out as different because they are adopted.”

    If she had left it at that, the valid points she makes would have made it impossible for her to be sacked. However, in today’s “multicultural” Great Britain it is a sin to admit to being a Christian, so that fact alone sealed her fate. I was watching that Sunday lunchtime chat show yesterday hosted by Nicky Campbell, and the subject covered segregated schooling. When a member of the ethnically diverse audience dared point out that the UK is/was a Christian country, the collective intake of breath and mass tut-tutting from the PC zealots present (and this being a BBC talk show they were well-represented!) was a sign of just how far this country has stumbled into a Stasi-like police state where speaking the truth is becoming a criminal offence. Sad how most of the posters on here are blindly and intolerantly reacting to the woman’s perceived homophobia when in fact all academical, peer-reviewed research now proves without a doubt that a mother and father in a happy, loving and nurturing family environment is the best possible environment for a child to grow up in.

  30. I am really disappointed at the number of gay people here who are defending this woman. If she’d said the same thing about black or jewish people then there wouldn’t even be a debate about it.

  31. What a corker. It’s a tough call when Christian streotypical conviction on the part of a medical doctor becomes a ‘significant problem’ in the welfare of children in need of loving homes.

    It’s strikes me as a waste of time to second guess the doctor; we really know so little about her, except that a committee member does have a right to abstain from voting the last time I looked.

    Our concern is not only to be vigilant in protecting the rights we, as members of the LGBT community, have fought so hard to obtain, but also to do our utmost to grasp the reality of the situation in its global context.

    As someone mentioned above (19), any kind of religious homophobia supported in democratic countries inevitably invites the deadly homophobia inherent in sharia law and Islam at a time in history when 9/11 is still fresh in our minds.

    We owe it to ourselves, as members of the gay community, to become more aware of the absolute and ruthless cruelty of sharia law which makes a mockery of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

    This, coupled with the mass immigration of Muslims into western countries, is the context of the opening decades of the 21st Century.

    Bottom line: homophobia is a mental illness. Can IT be cured?

  32. Eagle Ashcroft 21 Jul 2009, 6:51am

    Perhaps she thinks heterosexuality is a lifestyle too. How did she ever obtain a license to become a doctor? And she is no more a Christian than an atheist is. But then again we have the same sort of narrow-minded persons here in the USA, so its no surprise to see it in any other part of the world.

  33. Edward in Los Angeles: “If you don’t support gay adoption, that just makes you a bigot too.”

    Edward, you are full of s–t.
    Why can’t people have opinions contrary to yours without them being consider facists? Many people, including a lot of gay men disagree with adoption. I have always been one of the opinion that you should be allowed to do whatever you want in this world, as long as it doesn’t affect other people. Until now all gay rights fitted that caveat, but this doesn’t, you are playing with another human beings rights. It is wrong for people to say homosexuals are not normal, but it is true we are not ‘the norm’ – That’s just the way it is. It’s about time people not only accepted who and what we a re, but also what we aren’t. And we are NOT natural parents, so live with it, and stop expecting equality. You’ll be wanting to get pregnant next.

    Oh, and by the way, try using an *English* dictionary; it’s “infinitesimal”.

  34. Quote from RobN “..and stop expecting equality”

    He’s the only ‘gay’? person I know who argues AGAINST equality.

    RobN posts here regularly with views that are to say the least very odd for someone who purports to be homosexual.

    A very twisted logic is used. Almost the twisted kind of approach that american far-right anti gay groups use.

    There are people who are paid by politically motivated groups who are against gay rights, who post on gay websites to try to create division within gay groups, or to try to make gay people fight amongst themselves. These people, will every now and then agree with other posters just to make it seem like they are what they are, but most of the time push the ‘agenda’ they are paid to push. Sadly, it happens on many forums now, and even commercial companies now pay huge groups of people to do this kind of thing.

    I’ll let the readers decide if RobN fits into that category.

    I’m convinced that he is. As such it is pointless arguing with RobN.

  35. Homosexuals will assuredly never be more than a minority group unless some serious social engineering materializes as a means to humanly lower the birthrate of our distressed planet.

    On the other hand, it has proven time and again that being a member of a majority group does not necessarily legitimize a person’s opinion in a democratic nation.

    If that were so, Canadians gays would not have celebrated yesterday as the 4th Anniversary of QE2′s Royal Assent to bill C-38 by which Canada became the fourth country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage, an issue which deals with a minority group if ever there was one.

    True enough, becoming natural parents is not an option for gay couples. The right of a gay couple to become loving parents stands as reminder of how the world has become a better place as a result of the democratic process.

    As gay men ourselves, is it not our responsibility to protect our hard-earned rights against mentally ill individuals whose convictions are rooted in little more than fiction?

  36. @ Codex (29) You state ‘Sad how most of the posters on here are blindly and intolerantly reacting to the woman’s perceived homophobia when in fact all academical, peer-reviewed research now proves without a doubt that a mother and father in a happy, loving and nurturing family environment is the best possible environment for a child to grow up in.’

    Which part of ‘Just last week Terry Prendergast, the chief executive of Marriage Care, a marriage charity which has strong links to the Catholic Church, said that there is no evidence that children do better with heterosexual parents’ are you having a hard time comprehending? Surely if anybody would find against this it would be an organisation linked to the Catholic church. Yet they don’t.

    Interestingly you state that all academic research proves your point, yet offer no sources of this ‘research’.

    I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. It’s only when everybody accepts that two people of the same sex can do as good a job as two people of the opposite sex when it comes to raising children. I personally know of two well rounded, open minded, well adjusted young people who were the product of a lesbian mother and a gay father. They show less prejudices than some offspring of heterosexual parentage.

    You seem to have forgotten that the people we should be concerned about here is not ourselves and out own personal views, or the doctor who refuses to accept current medical understanding of sexual attraction, but the young people who are in need of loving parental figures to guide them as they negotiate their way through life, moreso after whatever tragedy has meant that they are in need of foster/adoptive parents.

  37. Dr Sheila Matthews was invited on to the panel to give a medical opinion not a moral opinion.

    In relation to Thread 6 . . . who needs fundamentalist “Chrisitan gay inequality rantings” on this issue when we have an extraordinary RobN ism on gay adoption.

    One point . . . we are now living in the 21st century not the 1950s. . . and thank goodness.

  38. J Mathews: It shows you have trouble with an argument when the paranoia sets in. Why is it everyone assumes that just because you are gay you have to fit the mould that so many of you fit like a bunch of clones? I have no attachments, political or otherwise with anyone, and my thoughts are entirely my own. I just don’t prescribe to the “Gay Lefty Clique” school of misguided, blinkered sheep. When I said “stop expecting equality” I meant there are simple natural laws you cannot overcome, no matter how much you throw your Peter Tatchell Brand ™ toys out of the cot.
    As Dr Mathews stated, “Mothers are more nurturing and fathers are more challenging and the combination of both is best for the development of a child.” – I also agree with that, and that is why in this situation it is unequal and can NEVER be reconciled with gay parents, because a mother and father can only be provided in a heterosexual relationship.

    I just think gay adoption is one demand too far. I don’t think that is bigoted or homophobic. I just think it is just selfish, demanding and wrong of gay couples to demand babies like they were buying some designer underpants.

  39. It also occured to me that J Mathews neglected to mention his sources so that it does sound as though he suspects a conspiracy theory of some kind.

    As for what is best for the development of a child, again in a global context, there was no mistaking the ‘nurturing’ instincts of grieving mothers and the horrendous abuse of fathers ‘challenging’ the children of Iran in the streets of Theran a few weeks ago.

  40. you were made to pay for being a bigoted bitch, so stop whinging.

  41. H-m-m-m. Succinct.

  42. With regards what is “Natural” . . . Children need “loving parents” to grow up emotionally and psychological well balance.

    Apparently, they is no correlation with specific gender configurations highly favouring one other an another. . . the main factor appears to be old fashioned love care and concern. . .

    Love, care and concern appears to be more important than the gender of the care takers. . . I am referring to the plethora of longitudinal studies which have been conducted across the world over the last 20 years and have reached this conclusion.

    I was personally sceptical that gay parents would be able to nurture healthy children. The wealth of longitudinal studies into the effect of these parenting units on children has convinced me that I am wrong.

    This is not “”Gay Lefty Clique” school of misguided, blinkered sheep” . . . this is a consensus across the world based on empirical, causal based longitudinal research, and when it comes to science this is as good as it gets.

    Disagreeing with “Gay parenting” is like saying I am rejecting science in favour of prejudice, misinformation and ignorance.

  43. Pumpkin Pie 22 Jul 2009, 1:33pm

    RobN, there has never been any proof that children do better with mixed sex parents, while there has actually been proof to the contrary. And this rubbish about men being more challenging and women being more nurturing is social conditioning. Same sex parents can fulfill these roles just as well.

    Saying that gay parents are less able to bring up children than gay parents without – or indeed against – evidence, based on your own personal prejudices (you may be gay, but you despise us for making you look bad in front of your straight friends) IS being bigoted. You are very much a bigot.

  44. Pumpkin Pie I think this is an important point.

    Gay parenting has been under the lens of the scientifc eye for decades now, and this can hardly be said about heterosexual parenting.

    . . . and of cause as you suggest, consequently we know very little about the effects of heterosexual parenting on the psychological and emotional well being of children.

  45. Pumpkin Pie: “You may be gay, but you despise us for making you look bad in front of your straight friends”

    Like that would be a profound reason for me to admonish gay parenting. I base my opinion on the one that so many attack, that of natural process. I am not going to spout Biblical rhetoric or “God’s will” – more that life finds a way of doing things, and in this case, it requires two sexes. There is more than just accident in that fact. If homosexuals could naturally support children, it would have happened a long time ago. However, it hasn’t and some people are trying to force a square peg in a round hole. Homosexuality is natural, if a little unusual. Gay parenting is just unnatural. Period. Don’t blame me for stating that fact, it’s just the way the world turns.

    Oh, and incidentally, I don’t have any friends. Hell is other people.

  46. “The natural order” . . . ?

    “Forcing a square peg in to a round hole” . . . ?

    . . . what about heterosexuals who cannot conceive through normal sexual intercourse and so resort to invitro fertilisation.

    Should they be regards as
    * Unnatural
    * Be banned from recieveing such treatments on the NHS”

    Does this not go against the natural order?

  47. Industrial Revolution, Hi-Tech…natural?? GMO’s. Pesticides. Surgery. etc.

  48. Daniel Wilkes 22 Jul 2009, 11:33pm

    “The children of gay adoptive parents are also more likely to be bullied at school”. That is the fault of people like you, you vile woman.

    Would she refuse to treat gay people? Doctors have to be impartial, personal beliefs must not compromise patient care. So how can she allow her personal beliefs to interfere with her sole responsibility in this job- to confirm that applicants are medically fit. She has no business letting her morals decide anything. Doctors like her who refuse to treat gay people equally should be struck off the General Medical Register.

  49. Daniel Wilkes 22 Jul 2009, 11:44pm

    “The children of gay adoptive parents are also more likely to be bullied at school”- that’s thanks to people like you, you vile woman!

    Doctors must not allow their personal beliefs to compromise patient care. If she is willing to let her ‘moral’ viewpoint get in the way of her adoption job, then the question must be asked whether she treats gay people differently as a doctor. If she does, she should be struck off the General Medical Register. Her job is supposed to be to assess the medical fitness of applicants, she has no place making decisions about the ‘moral’ suitability of parents.

    People’s religious beliefs should never trump the law of the land. The law says she has to consider gay applicants for adoption- that is what she must do if she wishes to keep her job. It’s not a question of denying her the right to her religious beliefs- she’s entitled to them, it’s not our fault that her job is incompatible with her unusually harsh views on homosexuals.

    The same argument could be made by somebody who doesn’t believe white people should be allowed to adopt black children or vice versa- would such a person get as much sympathy? I doubt it!

  50. Daniel Wilkes:

    “People’s religious beliefs should never trump the law of the land.”

    I agree, of course, and especially in a democracy. Unless we have equal rights, how can we enjoy equal freedom?

  51. I want to emphasise this as well.

    The law is the law.

    Christians do not have exemption from it because some of their beliefs do not fit with it. If Christians are worried that some of their beliefs will lead them to break the law, it is time that some of them started to look closely at those beliefs which go against the ethics and morality that the law is there to uphold.

  52. Pumpkin Pie 23 Jul 2009, 1:43pm

    RobN:-

    Gay parenting IS natural, IS found in nature, and DOES work well. You only need mixed sex parents to make a child, raising it can be done by any couple. As a matter of fact, that’s one of the big theories behind the existence of homosexuality: that gay couples care for the abandoned children of other couples, thus benefitting the existing population without adding any more to their numbers.

    Furthermore, children left to languish in care homes don’t tend to do very well in life (statistically speaking). Given the dire lack of adoptees nationwide (even worldwide) are you seriously telling me that you want them to stay there rather than have loving homes? You might think gay parents are unnatural (they aren’t), but having an institution as a parent just takes the biscuit.

  53. Pumpkin Pie: I especially appreciate your input, you know that.

    However, and in all fairness, RobN does have the right to express his opinion, just as the doctor had a right to abstain from voting. This kind of controversy is excellent soil for personal growth, know what I mean?

    You make an extraordinarily good point about children wasting away in institutions. My sister adopted three children, and they were all in terrible shape. They are now grown up and well developped, even though her husband left her with the 3 kids on her hands. Yeah, talk to me about the stability of heterosexual couples!

    John K: Your clear thinking is just what the doctor needs.

  54. Dr Sheila Matthews was treated exactly the same as her other colleagues on the adoption panel by her employer and expected to work within the legal requirements to consider same sex couples applications for adoption, she was not discriminated against.

    Dr Matthews actually wanted to be afforded different and privileged positive discrimination by her employers so that she could continue to negatively discriminate against same sex couples … as she had done before equality legislation was introduced by simply refusing to consider the merits of their applications.

    Dr Matthews beef is not that she was discriminated against by her employer but that she wasn’t granted special privileges by her employer. She was hoping to discriminate against those she personally disapproved of but failed to convince her employer to collude with her in this and she was rightly dropped.

  55. Commander Thor 23 Jul 2009, 8:20pm

    Pumpkin Pie, you are my hero here! You have pointed out all the stupidities I was about to call various posters on. RobN, having another go at the “unnatural” thing, eh? What nature? Your hallucination of it??

    Mothers nurturing and fathers challenging? Admittedly it was that way in my house, and I turned out gay…oops! But anyway, homosexuality does not depend on upbringing. On the other hand, the abovementionned stereotypical roles are actually reversed in my uncle’s family. Their kids are fine, thank you very much.

  56. Paul: I’ve only heard such finesse in the land down under, like a Vegetite spread over smoked salmon. Are you reading me?

    Thor: You’re gay? Gasp! Good comment, about your family, I mean.

  57. I agree, great finesse, clarity and precision from Paul . . . more

  58. Daniel Wilkes 23 Jul 2009, 10:33pm

    Sorry about the duplication above… I forgot to do the anti-spambot thing below on the first one and thought it wouldn’t be posted… now I see that it was… oops!

  59. Daniel:

    We won’t beat you up, this time!

  60. Zae asks, confusingly: “I disagree with her views, but she was willing to abstain. Why fire her?”

    Well, maybe because she’s not actually there to “abstain”, she’s supposed to take part. If she’s decided she can’t do her job, she’s a waste of space and should be kicked out. These people who who want special dispensation to not do the job they were taken on to do are ridiculous. They are just attention-seekers intent on wasting everyone’s time.

  61. Dr Matthews has been reinstated due to public outcry, this story has been all over the internet on the Christian websites claiming another persecuted Christian martyr etc.
    However, Dr Matthews has been told that she can continue to provide medical evidence to the panel, but that she cannot continue to act as a full member of the adoption panel with voting rights as she is not fulfilling the full duties of a panel member by refusing to vote on adoption issues regarding same sex couples.

  62. Is that progress or a nasty stick . . . Fudge

    . . . sticks to your teeth, difficult to get rid of and causes tooth decay!

  63. What? I’ve been on all kinds of committees for 40 years or more. Every time I’ve presided, I always accepted a member’s right to abstain from voting.

    Don’t get me wrong; I’m very happy that the homophobe has lost her right to vote, and I hope it sets a precedent.

    It’s just the procedure that baffles me. Is there such a difference between a committee and a panel? I’ve never handled a panel.

    Thanks for the news, Paul.

  64. Bentham explains: “Every time I’ve presided, I always accepted a member’s right to abstain from voting”.

    I’m sure that would be fair enough in many contexts, Bentham, but when it’s a decision to systematically refuse to vote in a certain class of cases because of personal beliefs that have no real relevance to the criteria being voted on, then the person has surely announced: “I’m not really suitable to be a member of this committee, so please kick me out, and find someone who’s prepared to do the job.”

    If she was honest about it, and not just seeking unjustified attention, she would have resigned as soon as it became clear that gay couples would now be able to apply to adopt.

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