Reader comments · Another MP withdraws from religious rights motion · PinkNews

Enter your email address to receive our daily LGBT news roundup

You're free to unsubscribe at any time.


Another MP withdraws from religious rights motion

Post your comment

Comments on this article are now closed.

Reader comments

  1. Goodie, also john hemming is a liberal not a labour mp, I emailed him about the motion last week. As a liberal and as a bisexual woman I found the fact that any liberal signed it disturbing. Please email Adrian sanders as he is the last liberal mp on the motion

    1. There we are, changed 2 mins after :)

      1. Robert J Brown 26 Jul 2011, 2:08pm

        Hey well us Liberal Democrat LGBT and non LGBT members are on to it and am sure it will happen soon.

  2. I am glad that these MPs have withdrawn their names from this ridiculous EDM. I hope my MP has not added his name to it, but if he has, I will request that he remove it.

    It’s simple: if you are providing a public service you have to do so without discriminating against LGBTs or anyone else. If a right-wing extremist refused to serve minority ethnic people, that would (quite correctly) not be acceptable, so why would it be considered acceptable for a right-wing Christian to discriminate against LGBT people?

    You can (sadly) be discriminatory in the privacy of your own home, but not when providing a public service.

    On another note, why has Pink News not covered Symon Hill’s Walk of Repentance for homophobia?

    1. You can check whether your MP has signed it here

      1. Hear Hear Yewtree –

        a well balanced view

    2. Yewtree ..the list of the 19 MPs still on the online database can be found on:

      They could all try to remove it from this online database ahead of formally withdrawing their names after recess. They could also plan to sign EDM 2109 which praises the court’s judgements of the Ladele case. Has PN contacted the others on the EDM and asked them whether their signatures are a mistake or are they genuinely in favour of discrimination against LGBT people? As for the amount of Lab MPs on the list I find that disgusting. Are LGBT labour going to tell us why there are so many of them?

  3. I do find it increasingly strange that Angela Mason hasn’t responded. I think she should resign from the EHRC if it goes ahead with this. Maybe she is on holiday or something…

    1. She is probably a homophobe like that waste of space Ben Summerskill (who was caught red-handed engaging in a homophobic campaign against marriage equality at the LibDem Party conference last year.)

      Both of those losers are more interested in their own careers and pockets than LGBT rights (which they pretend to support).

      1. I’m not sure where you get your information from but I’m pretty certain its untrue. To be fair to Angela Mason, Trevor Phillips is known not to consult his fellow commissioners leading to a whole bunch of them resigning last year including Ben Summerskill. Phillips may have put her in an impossible situation but I do think its bad for her PR not to say something… And I hardly think the head of Stonewall can be homophobic!

        1. Robert J Brown 26 Jul 2011, 2:19pm

          Once again where is Angela Mason.

          As mentioned previously, she should have least responded to calls and emails to say that she is too busy to respond. Maybe her other occupation as a Camden Council Councillor is taking up too much of her time.

      2. Dan Filson 26 Jul 2011, 3:11pm

        I have marched with Angela Mason a long distance with each of us holding one end of the Stonewall banner and I can assure you she is not a homophobe!

        1. Angela Mason, if she has any integrity as a human being should not have ANYTHING to do with an organisation (like the EHRC) which believes that religious bigotry should take precedence over her own civil rights.

          Which begs the question – why is she still silent? Why has she not condemned the utterly disgraceful and bigotted position taken by the EHRC?

          This controversy has been raging for weeks,

          I think it’s reaching the point where her silence has become deafening and it’s not unreasonable to draw the conclusion that she believes that religious bigotry should take precedence over gay civil rights.

          In my book that makes Angela Mason a homophobe, reagrdless of how many Stonewall banners she has carried.

      3. Yawn

        1. Do you still work for Stonewall, Confused (you used to last year anyway). How is it working in a group whose leadership has thrashed its reputation?

          Don’t you agree that Ben Summerskill is completely unsuitable to be leader of Stonewall considering his homophobic campaign against marriage equality,.

          And don’t you agree that Angela Mason should have replied to legitimate questions about her association with a group like the EHRC which believes that religious bigotry should take precedence over equality legislation?

  4. Messrs Hemming, Hancock and McDonnell should have known better than to sign something they didn’t fully understand. But better late than never.

    How many of the other MPs misunderstood what they were signing? If your MP is on the list, write to explain that religious ‘conscientious objection’ equals allowing individuals to discriminate, and would mean the end of equality.

    Joe Benton (Lab, Bootle)
    Peter Bottomley (Con, Worthing West)
    Therese Coffey (Con, Suffolk Coastal)
    David Crausby (Lab, Bolton North East) Jim Dobbin (Lab, Heywood and Middleton)
    Nigel Dodds (DUP, Belfast North)
    Jeffery Donaldson (DUP, Lagan Valley)
    Mark Durkan (SDLP, Foyle)
    Paul Flynn (Lab, Newport West)
    Mark Glindon (Lab, North Tyneside)
    Gordon Marsden (Lab, Blackpool South)
    Alan Meale (Lab, Mansfield)
    Adrian Sanders (LibDem,Torbay)
    Jim Shannon (DUP, Strangford)
    Jim Sheridan (Lab, Paisley and Renfrewshire North)
    Gary Streeter (Con, South West Devon)

    1. Robert J Brown 26 Jul 2011, 2:20pm

      I have already submitted a letter to Dr Therese Coffey as she is the MP for where my mother now lives. I have also been pushing for Adrian Sanders to retract his name as well.

  5. It’s worth noting that Mark Durkan (SDLP-Foyle) and Naomi Long (Alliance Party – East Belfast) have both removed their names from this EDM as well.

    1. It seems that Naomi Long is no longer on the online database..somehow she’s managed to remove her name from the list posted above?

    2. Paddyswurds 26 Jul 2011, 2:06pm

      ….but it is no surprise that the ridicolous Dodds and Donaldson both have signed this unjust motion. I call on any GLB from Northern Ireland and whos MP these two are to call on them to withdraw their names ASAP.

  6. The more religious extremists express ridiculous attachment to seriously outdated social norms,the more association with religion becomes undesirable in the eyes of those with an IQ above a rock,and the whole system is slowly crashing.Long overdue…

  7. Where is Angela?

    1. Probably sucking up to someone in power as we speak, trying to advance her own career.

      Angela Mason’s priority is clearly Angela Mason.

      Then again she used to lead Stonewall so what else could you expect except repellent cowardice, self-interest and opportunism.

      1. Dan Filson 26 Jul 2011, 3:14pm

        I think it is utterly vile to imply those working for or with Stonewall are motivated by “repellent cowardice, self-interest and opportunism.”

        1. That’s your opinion.

          But seeing as Ben Summerskill was caught campaigning against marriage equality, and seeing as he is still the head of Stonewall, it is clear that LGBT people are not the priority for Stonewall. Summerskill through his disgraceful homophobic campaigning has shown that he is motivated by cowardice, self-interest and opportunism.
          Angela Mason preceded Summerskill.

          And her inexplicable silence on the horrendously stupid and offensive position taken by her employer calls into serious question, her integrity as an LGBT campaigner.

          What is the point of having a lesbian commissioner on the EHRC if she is too cowardly and selfish to condemn their disgraceful stupidity?

      2. Rashid Karapiet 26 Jul 2011, 3:17pm

        People like SteveC give cyberspace the dubious name it has: whatever his problem with Stonewall abusive postings like these merely show him up for the mindless bigot he appears to be. Or does he know something about Angela Mason etc which we don’t? If so let’s have it out in the open, otherwise Mr. SteveC. it’s time to s t f u…

        1. So I give cyberpace a dubious name. How amusing.

          Thank you.

          Stonewall and now Angela Mason’s utter uselessness in actually campaigning for LGBT equality give LGBT organisations a bad name.

          Why is Mason silent?

          What is she up to?

          If she cannot condemn the EHRC position then clearly she is unqualified to do her job?

      3. Soo true, from what i’ve seen of stonewall , their apathy towards lgbt equality is harmful.

        1. Ben Summerskill did condemn the ECHR statement in fairly strong terms.

          1. * EHRC

  8. Jock S. Trap 26 Jul 2011, 12:44pm

    Considering who these people are I find it hard to believe they entered into this ‘by accident’!

    No MP should be backing this, we All pay taxes and have a right to be treated just like everyone else. It’s sad enough that we’re up for debate in the first place.

  9. I find it disturbing that 9 of the MPs on that list are Labour… The Tories only 3? I’m no fan of the Tories but damn that’s embarrasing for Labour surely?

    1. It is worrying indeed.

      What I find strange is though, Paul Flynn signed it and he has an excellent voting record on gay rights…

      1. marjangles 26 Jul 2011, 1:22pm

        Possibly more worrying is that Gordon Marsden is gay!

        1. Yup… rather shocking actually that Labour outnumber Cons.

      2. Dan Filson 26 Jul 2011, 3:18pm

        The EDM has a logic which will go over the heads of some Pink News commenters, namely that if a way can found to resolve the dilemma of meeting the consciences of those with religious faiths and the human rights and right to equality of treatment of LGBT people, then the way should at least be explored. What the EHRC is doing is not endorsing outright the position of the people involved in these various cases but seeking to be involved in the cases.

        1. Complete and utter rubbish.

          Do you support the following statement? If not then why not?

          “if a way can found to resolve the dilemma of meeting the consciences of those with religious faiths and the human rights and right to equality of treatment of Black/jewish/muslim/Asian/female people, then the way should at least be explored.”

        2. The EDM appears to have gone over the head of many that signed it as well….it refers to 4 CASES and the EHRC response to them only!. The EHRC has not changed it’s website , it stll says that the British courts were too narrow in their judgement on these 4 cases ie these judgements aren’t correct in their opinion, NONE OF THEM!!!. Frankly I don’t give a toss about crucifixes, turbans, skull hats etc but the LAdele case for instance I don’t see as being too narrow and the EHRC needs to explain what they think the outcomes for this case should have been and for all others like it…what compromises do all employers, employees now need to make and wan’t made in the LAdele case. What do they think are religious beliefs ie are CPs really religious and so on. Their opinion is so vague , so controversial and yet nothing more comes from them , including Angel Mason who I guess must be the spokesperson, the go-between on LGBT issues…

        3. Dan – the EDM is so logical ,as you seem to think, that another EDM was raised the following day praising the judegement of the British courts in the Ladele case and was signed by 2 of the MPs that had signed this previous one. How logical is that? As a commentator on PN that’s beyond my logic ! Either the ladele case is wrong or not ..I for one think that the EHRC’s decision to intervene on this case is BAD! It’s not like employing a Jewish person to be a pork sausage taster since there is nothing religious about registering a civil partnership anybody should be able to do it. CPs will never be “religious”, even after they’ve implemented the forthcoming changes to allow them to be done in churches..

        4. Arrogant twaddle Dan

          Go over the heads of some PN commentators? Not yours, eh?

          Who the hell do you think you are?

          There are plenty of intelligent and capable debators on here. Your opinion is not the only one that counts,.

          What the EHRC is doing is wrong and patronising

  10. If the Labour Party does not insist that those of its MP’s who have signed this toxic motion withdraw from it, then I want those MP’s who refuse to withdraw be expelled from the Labour Party.

    Otherwise we can assume that the Labour Party has an official policy whereby religious bigotry takes precedence over gay civil rights.

    The EHRC has proven itself to be a sworn enemy of LGBT equality and we must all work to ensure that it is closed down as a matter of priority. It has completely failed in its duty of care to protect human rights, while it views religious bigotry as more important than gay human rights.

    1. I don’t care much about the dress codes cases but before they simply withdraw their names from the EDM I want an explanation why they thought the Ladele case was incorrect. After that I want them to write to the EHRC and complain, sign EDM 2109 and then get their leader Ed Miliband to kick ass in parliamnet after the recess and get to the bottom of all this..Simply just removing their names and doing bugger else all is not enough!!!

    2. de Villiers 26 Jul 2011, 2:08pm

      It is dangerous for MPs to have to agree with the leadership. Even though we may disagree with these particular MPs on this issue, we can all see the danger in all MPs having to think and decide on issues as directed by the leader of their party. If this were to happen, we may as well not bother electing MPs as opposed to one Prime Minister and one Leader of the Opposition.

      1. I go for a party policy not the whims of an individual MP ,who on the face of it ,appear so daft and ignorant that they are incapable of reading an EDM properly, reading what the EHRC had to say and asking first what the 4 case were that the EDM was referring to. Something as funadamental as the Ladele case I would expect them to follow their leader and not their personal viewpoints…but then again none of the leaders have spoken out one way or the other on the EHRC’s decision or the LAdele case so I wouldn’t really know what their opinion was ….all of them seem to think it has nothing to do with them , that they don’t have an opinion on what their party should believe in…

        1. de Villiers 26 Jul 2011, 9:13pm

          No party has a view on Ladele. It was a court case interpreting the meaning of the statute. In any event, you can go for a party policy and still believe that MPs should not be mere vassals of the party leader.

    3. Dan Filson 26 Jul 2011, 3:19pm

      It is utter nonsense to say that “the EHRC has proven itself to be a sworn enemy of LGBT equality”. Decrying as worthless the EHRC plays into the hands of Tories who want it wound up.

      1. After this decision I think that would be a good thing.

      2. The EHRC has stated quite clearly that it believes that religious bigotry needs to be accommodated when it comes to the provision of goods and services to LGBT people (but not Black/Asian/Jewish/Muslim/Female people).

        I don’t need an organisation like that.

        And I do not want my taxes funding a moronically stupid organisation like the EHRC.

        I want it to be wound up (and replaced by an organisation which believes that LGBT people deserve equal rights).

  11. A motion tabled by Conservative MP, Gary Streeter! End of.

  12. I asked Liberty about the EHRC decision to intervene

    As Liberty has itself intervened in the right to wear religious symbols, please could you let me know, or publish a press release clarifying exactly where you stand on the EHRC decision to intervene in all four cases? Thanks.

    I’ve heard back from Liberty, and they declined to issue a statement condemning the EHRC. Very disappointed. Perhaps it’s because John Wadham is a friend of Shami Chakrabarti.

    1. Dan Filson 26 Jul 2011, 3:25pm

      No, not because of an old pals act conspiracy as you imply, but probably because they, like the EHRC, see their being human rights issues on both sides of the argument. There is, or should be, a right to wear religious symbols at work, provided they are not so “in your face” as to have the potential to offend deeply the customer/patient/service reciient. If I was in hospital and being treated by a nurse, I would have no problems with a nurse wearing a small crucifix, but not one several inches in size. Personally I’m an atheist and deeply hostile to so-called Christian fundementalists, but people must recognise that people with faiths have the right to hold them and practice them provided the practice of their faiths does not impose upon others.

      1. Yes, Dan, I pointed out that two of the cases were of concern. I’m not against wearing religious symbols at work. However there can be no compromise on the Ladele and McFarlane cases, both of which are solely about the right to discriminate against LGBT people.

        1. mediabeetle 26 Jul 2011, 4:33pm

          Liberty intervened in the Ladele case – supporting the Council against the registrar. As an aside, they are also representing Rebecca Nash and Hope Stubbings, the lesbian couple who were turned away from a hotel and Michael Black and John Morgan who were turned away from a b&b. I think these actions speak louder – also, Wadham was Liberty’s director prior to Chakrabarti, which i don’t think necessarily makes them friends…

          1. Let’s hope they haven’t done a U-turn like the EHRC.

  13. the bigget flaw in this bill is that status of an MP. You cannot contact another MP out of your area, so you only have one MP, what if he/she opts of representing gay people on reglious grounds , then we will have nothing. Even though we pay towards it.

  14. I think a lot of these MPs haven’t thought the consiquences of this bill (as per usual) It would mean an atheist or humanist could refuse to serve any religion. Jews could refuse to serve Muslims and visa versa. I myself as a Spiritualist will definately refuse to employ or serve the above plus Christains if this goes a head. I think it should go through as it will show it up to be a complete disaster.

  15. Anyone know if DELGA or LGBT Labour have anything to say about the EHRC statement?

  16. The silence from EHRC makes it sound like a secretive cabal in the same way that New Scotland Yard was about the phone hacking.

    The EHRC is an organisation trying to subverting the laws of the land by the back door. And guess who’s paying for it?

    Ban it!

  17. If you go to the Christian Legal Centre you will see what is basically a rogues gallery of cases that the CLC have rightly lost.
    Somehow the odious Andrea Minichiello Williamsof the CLC has convinced the EHRC, against all the evidence, that some of these cases have merit,
    I am not fully familiar with the other cases but certainly the following cases do not have merit, Eunice & Owen Johns, Lesley Pilkington, Gary Mcfarlane, Dr Sheila Matthews, Theresa Davies.

  18. I was infuriated when I read about this, and even more so when I found out which MP tabled this motion, my own, Mr Gary Streeter. Yet again he comes up with another stupid idea, why in god’s name is this man allowed to represent me!?

    1. Simply?
      Because more people voted for him than for any other single person standing in your constituency.

      Did you vote for a change in our voting system? If not, quit complaining and get on with encouraging people to vote.
      People died so we ordinary men and women could vote.
      All you people who complain and moan but don’t bother voting? STFU.

  19. Big big yay!!! Maybe this will encourage more to remove there names from this rediculous and appaling motion! They wouldn’t descriminte against someone of another religion or faith!

    They deffinatley have something to say if I refused to serve them in ashop because they were A: Straight and B: Christian! “I’m sorry I can’t serve you because it’s against my gay/pagan beliefs to serve straight/Christians!” I’d be arrested! lol

  20. there is plenty of justification for refusing to serve christians on the grounds of conscience.

  21. Yeh. a “motion” is about all it is….

  22. Thank you, Sottom, for this carefully reasoned intervention.

    As a committed pastafarian, the Flying Spaghetti Monster has commanded me not to spend more than 5 minutes per day disagreeing with people who reject logic and science, on pain of being struck down by His Noodly Appendage.

    On this basis, should the proposed law pass, I look forward to informing my boss that conscientious objection means I am unable to spend more than five minutes per day teaching students who hold onto illogical and unscientific beliefs, such as thinking that homosexuality is wrong. They will be ejected from my lectures after the first five minutes, but will of course be perfectly well accommodated in the excellent lectures provided by my colleagues.

    I presume I have your full support in this since ‘only bigoted loonies can scream against’ a measure allowing individuals to conscientiously object?

  23. Damn, I nearly forgot, I deserve to be flogged with a cat of nine tails made of spaggetti. I to became a Pastafarian though I tend to call myself a Pastarian. Well thats it then, we will be covered as well, let them bring it on :)

These comments are un-moderated and do not necessarily represent the views of PinkNews. If you believe that a comment is inappropriate or libellous, please contact us.