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Scottish Lib Dems call for gay marriage

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  1. Hurrah.

    At last the marriage equality movement is getting going.

    Isn’t is beyond shocking and embarrassing however that Stonewall – Britain’s self styled leading LGB (but not T) advocacy group is less committed to LGBT equality than a mainstream political party.

  2. Excellent!

    A bold maneuver, and very well-timed I think.

  3. Lib Dems leading where Stonewall fear to tread…

  4. Since the SNP are dragging their feet over the issue, this announcement by the Lib Dems should make them the party of choice for LGBT Scots.

  5. What silly posts at 1-4 written by people with limited knowledge of Scotland – the LibDems were in government in Scotland from 1999 to 2007 and kept very quiet about “gay marriage” – they are not to be trusted.

  6. The SNP don’t even believe in civil partnerships! they just tolerate them because they need to be all thing to all people in Scotland. But that’s what happens when you have a single issue party.

    The SNP have also been in the Scottish government from 1999 to 2010 as of yet they have not supported full LGBT equality.

    Its the SNP and Alex Sammond that should not be trusted.

  7. Abi – are you drunk???? The SNP were not in government in Scotland from 1999 – there were two Labour/LibDem coalitions from 1999 to 2007. What you write is simply contrary to the historical record of the outcome of the first two Scottish elections – facts are chiels that winna ding dear but I don’t suppose the fact that you have got your basic facts so fundamentally wrong with be allowed to impinge on your “thinking”.

  8. I said government when what I should of said is they held seats in the Scottish parliament not government I stand corrected. So are you a SNP stooge SimonQ or are you drunk yourself or just indoctrinated?

    I’m guessing you would need to be on drugs to think the SNP are LGBT friendly.

  9. Abi, there is a huge difference between being in government and being in the parliament and your mistake not only rendered your post a lie but revealed your prejudices. I think you’ll find the SNP, which I am not a member of, has supported the repeal of Section 28, the Gender Recognition Act and the Civil Partnership Act (though many SNP MSPs, along with MSPs from all parties in the Parliament, were not very happy with the sleekit antics of the Lib/Lab Executive in asking Westminster to legislate on an important area of Scots private law). But of course like all stupid and bigoted people, when you are revealed as talking absolute rubbish you go on the attack – you seem quite quite loopy! Goodnight!

  10. SimonQ you are quite right. I think the poor dim witted abi1975 is mistaking the SNP for the BNP.

    Here’s the news. The SNP formed the Government as the single largest party in Scotland in 2007. Prior to this, the LibDems and Labour ran the Scottish government in a coalition, as neither party had an outright majority. During those 10 years in power, the LibDems said nothing about gay marriage.

    The SNP is gay friendly, and has pushed for much of the LGBT legislation in Scotland over the last two years. The Scottish National Party is not anti LGBT, and even has its own LGBT group.

    It beggars belief the number of dim witted people in England who think they know about Scottish politics and the SNP, when in reality they know b*gger all.

    And just for the record, the SNP have won the last TWO elections in Scotland, are the single largest political party in Scotland, and are the largest party in the Scottish Parliament.

    Those who pst that the SNP are anti gay are either ;

    1. Stupid.

    2. pig ignorant.

    Maybe you should take a look at the SNP dot org website, and read their manifesto.

  11. Oh and while I’m in rant mode, you might like to check out the SNP Euro MP, Alyn Smith. He is openly gay, and lives with his partner in Scotland. He has his own website.

  12. And does the SNP support marriage equality as part of it official policy?

    And what disciplinary action was taken by the SNP against Kenneth Gunn, the Scottish National Party councillor for Selkirk, who described “so-called” gays as “really very sad people” and said that non-believers are “damned to hell” during a live BBC radio phone-in programme, last year?

  13. Of course the SNP has its homophobes like any other large party – Fergus Ewing and that wee chap Matheson and even poor old Roseanna Cunningham have all covered themselves in shame at various points but I would trust the SNP government long before the Lib/Lab crowd (though that’s not necessarily saying much). Isn’t it funny that the more rabid supporters of the British Nationalist Parties (Liebour, Tory, LibDem) all pour scorn on the SNP for its nationalism when their parties are the most backward, racist British Nationalist lowlifes? Of course Abi won’t tell us why her party (is it LibDem or Liebour) failed to introduce “gay marriages” because her purpose is to use misinformation to attack – silly thing that she is, but then I think she lives in Hemel Hempstead!

  14. Remember, the SNP are simply Tartan Tories. They’re not to be trusted at all.

  15. Jean-Paul Bentham 9 Mar 2010, 3:38am

    m-m-m, I thought the SNP leaned to the left.

  16. The Scottish LibDems are to be applauded for this conference vote, irrespective of party politics, they have brought the agenda forward in Scotland. I hope the SNP Government will allow Parliamentary time for any motion regarding gay marriage to be properly debated and hopefully passed. Dissenters come from all political parties and I think that having an SNP Government as opposed to one of the other parties in charge, being told what to do from London, can only be a good thing for Scotland.

  17. Tim Hopkins 9 Mar 2010, 8:47am

    Actually, SimonQ, the LibDems played a key role, in their coalition negotiations with Labour following the 2003 Scottish Parliament election, in ensuring a commitment to introducing civil partnership in Scotland was included in the Scottish government programme for 2003-7.

    Credit where credit’s due! We’ll all be able to see transparently which, if any, parties include marriage equality in their manifestos for the 2011 Scottish election.

  18. Tim Hopkins 9 Mar 2010, 8:53am

    And we may get to see sooner than the 2011 election what each party in Scotland thinks on this issue, because the LGBT groups here are just now asking the Scottish Govt and the other parties to support movement on this issue, following the vote in the Lords last week for change in England and Wales.

  19. Tim, the point on this list was that ill-informed people were comparing the Scottish Government unfavourably with the LibDems for not introducing “gay marriage” when the LibDems did not seek to introduce “gay marriage” when they were in power in Scotland – I didn’t say the LibDems did not support civil partnership so please don’t correct me on that. One of the idiots even tried to get away with sayign that the SNP had been in government from 1999 and “failed” to act on “gay marriage”. So what would you say of a party that calls for something to be done when they failed to do that self-same thing when they were in power? Like Peter tatchell the people on these lists say that civil partnership is sexual apartheid and that “gay marriage” is a right (I don’t happen to agree) – well, if that is true who imposed this terrible apartheid system on us but New Leibour and the LibDems – in politics unlike the bedroom you can’t have it all ways at once!

  20. Tim Hopkins 9 Mar 2010, 9:24am

    To be fair to all the parties who supported the introduction of civil partnership in 2004 (which included the SNP of course – credit where credit’s due), that was what the LGBT groups, including ours, the Equality Network, were calling for at the time.

    We’d surveyed LGBT people in Scotland in 2001, and the majority said to us, in effect: “We want you to work to get civil partnership – we might get that within 3 or 4 years. In the long run, we want marriage equality, but we recognise that will take a lot longer”.

    I think people were right to make that call. Of course, not everyone thought that – there was a minority who said “Don’t work for civil partnership at all – only same-sex marriage will do”, and another minority who said “Don’t ever bother with marriage; civil partnership is better”.

    Personally I am a believer in the “salami-slicing” approach to progress on LGBT law – you make progress by taking smallish steps and building on each step. Now we are building on what we got in 2004, and asking all the political parties to support the next step towards complete equality.

    The Equality Network’s long-term aim on this is what it has been since 2001 – that marriage and civil partnership should both be available as choices for couples regardless of gender. But we’re in favour of smaller steps in that direction, such as allowing CP ceremonies to be done by ministers and the like on religious premises in Scotland, if we can make progress faster that way.

  21. Regarding the comment above abotu the SNP being ‘tartan Tories’.

    Sadly most people do not know the origin of this term.

    In the 1930’s, the SNP were partly formed from a breakaway of the Scottish conservative and unionist party (Tories). To fight them, the Labour party used the term ‘tartan tories’.

    The current conservative party are the staunchest fighters AGAINST Scottish independence.

    To call the SNP ‘tartan Tories’ nowadays some eighty years later, is like calling the LibDems whigs.

    It is very silly.

  22. Tim Hopkins 9 Mar 2010, 10:16am

    There are extracts from the Scottish LibDems’ conference debate on equal marriage here, starting at 20:40, up to 24:15.

  23. Tim Hopkins 9 Mar 2010, 10:46am

    … and I’ve discovered the text of the motion that was passed, which is really excellent and inclusive, including abolishing the requirement to divorce before getting gender recognition, as well as opening up marriage and CP to all couples regardless of gender, and including the ‘Stonewall amendment’ policy of allowing religious (and in Scotland, humanist) celebrants to solemnise same-sex marriages and civil partnerships.

    Having praised it so much, perhaps I should add that I’m not a LibDem!

    The motion is available here on the DELGA website.

  24. Hooray for Scotland. Here in the UK we don’t even have any movement for full marriage equality, neither Labour or Tory parties support it. I hope Scotland goes that extra mile and wins civil marriage equality putting England to shame. I can just imagine the uproar it would cause for Scottish gay couples who would marry only to find out that their marriages would NOT be recognised as such in England. I relish that battle, watching Labour and Tories squabbling over who is more pro-equality and who isn’t. That would indeed be a line drawn in the sand and we’d see just exactly who in either party truly supports us on this issue alone. Either way, neither of the two parties are getting my vote until they deliver the goods and not before.

  25. Tim Hopkins 9 Mar 2010, 7:24pm

    Robert the potential uproar you mention is why we are concerned that perhaps the UK Govt might over the next years put obstacles in the way of the Scottish Parliament introducing equal marriage for Scotland. The UK Govt could potentially create obstacles, because some of the consequences of marriage, like the inheritance tax breaks and the immigration rules, are controlled by the UK Govt, not the Scottish Govt.

    We hope though, that the UK Govt would instead want to allow the Scottish Parliament to decide on this issue without UK Govt pressure.

  26. Stephen Kay 9 Mar 2010, 8:21pm

    I must admit I don`t know much about scottish politics as an english resident but I will be following this very closely. I have already dumped support for Labour due to gay issues and will be voting Lib Dem`s anyway. I can see the UK government putting the brakes on this even though it`s the solution to the oxymoron of Religious Civil Partnerships. I applaud Lord Ali`s efforts but it just show how discrminatory CP`s are. It`s a lesser form of marriage making it open to attack on proggression by the bishops who have forced the equalities minister to announce she may withdraw the ammendment to allow Religious ceremonies.

  27. There should be no surprise that the Lib Dems in Scotland have taken this lead. To be honest the Liberal Democrats (and the proceeding Liberal Party) have led the LGBT debate ( when other parties were keen to abuse us.

  28. AnthonyBermon 10 Mar 2010, 2:05pm

    While I agree that the Lib Dems did nothing about this while in government for 8 years from 1999-2007, I personally believe that the SNP are not altogether gay-friendly either. I’ve been in touch with one of my Regional SNP Members about this and also Out for Independence, who disagree with me. But here are the facts as I see them:
    1. The SNP are funded by Brian Souter, a major homophobe. They already changed their bus re-regulation policy to favour him just after he donated half a million pounds to the SNP. What else might they do to please him in the future? Would they accept money from someone who’s openley racist or anti-Semitic.
    2. Fergus Ewing and Roseanna Cunnigham are homophobes, due to their catholic faith, yet both are ministers in the Scottish Government and have never been disciplined for their actions. He supported the firemen who refused to attend gay pride and she tried to stop same-sex couples from adopting. If you apply their actions to asian or jewish people then it is unaccceptable, so why is it acceptable for them to treat gay people like this?
    3. The SNP government wanted Catholic Adoption agencies to be exempt from the equality laws so they could continue to refuse gay couples. Westminster refused to allow them to do this so the SNP government helped St. Margaret’s, an adoption agency in Glasgow, to change their rules so they can still legally refuse gay couples.
    4. The SNP leadership are very big on religion and support faith schools and faith groups, many of whom are homophobic.

    By the way, before any SNP supporter’s get their knickers in a twist, I’m NOT a Labour, LIb Dem or Tory supporter. In fact, I support no party in particular. I actually used to strongly support the SNP but felt I had to stop since they have shown themselves to be massively homophobic in the last 3 years.

  29. I have to concur that the SNP are not particularly gay friendly, at least no more so than Labour. Fergus Ewing was not the only SNP MSP to support the anti-gay fire fighters. I believe Sandra White MSP did too, although she does support gay marriage, having signed the Equal Marriage campaign pledge. However the current SNP government rejected two petitions for same-sex marriage to the Scottish Parliament recently, on spurious grounds. The justification given was that it would be too complicated because aspects of marriage like immigration and tax are UK matters. I view this to be a total cop -out on the part of the SNP Government, & a politically expedient yet surreptitious snub to the gay community in Scotland. Numerous states and provinces of bigger nations around the world (in the US, Canada, Latin America and Australia) have enacted gay marriage or civil unions, whilst being unable to influence parts of it dealt with at a federal/national level. The SNP’s credibility on this issue is shot.

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