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Scotland: Majority of MSPs support equal marriage

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  1. This is really good news! I have always thought that if the Scottish Government decide to proceed then there will definately be enough MSPs in favour of it.

    Only a week to go! I can’t wait to hear if the Scot Gov will decide to go ahead with marriage equality!

    Also, I’m glad the Equality Network are determined to get it through via a Member’s Bill if the Scot Gov do drop it. Well done to all the people at the Equality Network who’ve been pursuing this issue for years!

    Just one word wee of caution – remember the Lib Dems and how they all signed the tuition fees pledge!!!

    1. Four days before this story broke, I had sent an e-mail to my constituency MSP and the 3 West Scotland MSPs who have still not declared asking them to contact the campaign to let them know their views.

      I had assumed that in the case of my SNP constituency MSP, this would be no problem as she sent me a letter months ago saying she was in favour of same sex marriage and that she would vote for it.

      However, she’s just replied to my recent e-mail and she’s now saying that she’s undecided.

      I find this very strange indeed, that someone who supports gay equality can go from being in favour to being undecided and I just hope that it’s not a case of pressure being put on the SNP. How many more will change their mind like this?

      As for the 3 West Scotland MSPs, none have replied so far, although it’s worth pointing out that both Annabel Goldie and Stuart MacMillan are members of the Scottish Parliament’s Equality Committee, so I can’t see how they can be anything other than in favour of it.

  2. If there’s any doubt that marriage equality is needed in Scotland, then just look at the comments on this same story on the Scotsman.com website. You would be forgiven for thinking you were on the Daily Mail website!

    1. There always seems to be an orchestrated adverse response to these stories in certain papers. It’s as if men are going to be compelled to leave their wives and embark upon a same sex marriage. In one breath they say how unimportant this is compared to other issues yet in the next breath they are fuming with rage about it? They should make their minds up:-)

    2. concerned resident of E3 11 Jun 2012, 12:55pm

      Ray is correct. I recognise some of the posters from several of the Telegraph, Mail, Sun and Daily Record stories (particularly the rabidly Catholic ones). Incidentally, having tried to engage in the debate, note that anyone who posts anything progay will have their posts multiply reported which triggers automated moderation suspending your ability to post. That appears to have happened to anyone attempting to support gay marriage in that comments section and the scosman have in result suspended comments on the story.

      1. If it is an orchestrated group of people, then it makes me feel a bit better, because it means there’s a small group of homophobes deliberately targeting these newspaper comments threads, and that’s preferable to there being a large number of members of the public who are homophobic commenting off their own back.

  3. Jock S. Trap 10 Jun 2012, 2:14pm

    Well done to the MSP’s.. Let’s hope our Westminster bunch take note and prove themselves worthy!!

    1. I honestly think the same thing will happen in Westminster, that there will be a majority of MPs who’ll vote for it. Only time will tell, though!

      1. Jock S. Trap 10 Jun 2012, 7:18pm

        Totally agree, I think the bigot will be outnumbered on all sides leading the way…. They clearly fear stability by the state rather than religion who would prefer chaos through fear and dictatorship.

        ( I do of course not mean all but the extremist fruitloops out there like certain Archbishops and Cardinals we all hear about.)

        1. I think you’re absolutely right, Jock.

    2. concerned resident of E3 11 Jun 2012, 12:59pm

      only problem is that for westminster, the House of Lords will block the legislation repeatedly meaning that the government will have to take it right up to the line with the parliamentary process (takes a couple of years) before they either abandon the legislation or use the Parliament act.

      By contrast, Holyrood is unicameral, so a simple vote by MSPs will pass the legislation.

      It is entirely possible that scotland will have equal marriage several years before the rest of the country.

  4. Excellent news!
    Back in Westminster, this is how things are stacking up:

    From the already 283 declared MPs,

    228 will vote in FAVOUR of M.E.
    55 will vote AGAINST M.E.

    That means that from the remaining 352 MPs (15 are neutral), only another 98 MPs need to vote in favour for there to be a one seat majority for M.E. However it is fast becoming evident from that Statistics, that Marriage Equality will pass in the commons with a sizeable majority! x

    1. With the Lib Dems whipped, the vast majority of Labour supporting and the Green MP in favour then there are already enough Tory MPs in direct support to win in the Commons – and with many more sounding inceasingly supportive, it appears the Commons majority will be significant.

      I hope the Holyrood majority grows and is significant too.

      Scotland have a head start given their consultation ended so long ago. They needs to act and the Westminster parliament needs to act as soon as it can – it should not take as long to assess the consultation as Scotland has!

      1. I’m wondering when the results of the England&Wales consultation may be published? Because I suspect by the end of the summer a clear majority of MPs will out in favour for marriage, so if this happens to coincide with the results of the consultation soon after, I don’t see why Marriage Equality legislation cannot be rolled out by the end of the year!

        A v.exciting time indeed! M.E for Lux, France and maybe New Zealand next year? and things looking v.positive for marriage in the UK!

    2. YES- but what about in the LORDS?

      1. Lords aren’t relevant in Scotland.

        In terms of England & Wales – use the Parliament Act – which is particularly justifiable for civil rights, and more so when there is a massive Commons majority – which is anticipated.

      2. Oh, and Scotland introducing equal marriage puts further pressure of Westminster to do likewise.

        1. Jock S. Trap 11 Jun 2012, 9:30am

          Agreed. It will look foolish if Westminster bigots ignore the populace on this vote. The Lords is the main worry with so many religious extremists being among them and they have nothing to loss by voting equality down.

          I hope in many ways David Cameron proves himself a worthy leader by getting this through and stands up to the Lords.

          1. Jock S. Trap 11 Jun 2012, 9:32am

            btw I do mean the Lords for England’s equality.

          2. It will look worse than foolish – it will be a dereliction of duty and responsibility and acting in a bigoted manner if the views of the majority (fairness and equality for LGBT people) are ignored by legislators in either Parliament.

            It appears the Holyrood vote is fairly likely to be won and the Commons vote too.

            The Lords perceptually is more probelmatic (although there have been other votes in the past – some on LGBT issues – where this has been perceived and despite robust debate the vote has been in favour of equality in the Lords. I do hope the government are prepared to use the Parliament Act, if required.

          3. Jock & Stu

            I definately think it will get through in the Commons but you could be right about the Lords. However, hopefully it will be no more than a stumbling block if it comes to it, rather than any major hold-ups. I can’t help but think that if it passes in Scotland and then the English/Welsh passes in the Commons, it would be difficult for the Lords to vote against with so much momentum in favour of marriage equality.

          4. Jock S. Trap 11 Jun 2012, 10:15am

            I guess if one thing this just shows why the government needs to push ahead with Lords reform and make it an elected house like the commons. I do agree that in democracy we should have two houses, it makes sure legislation is debated and workable but it needs to be by people who represent the country.

          5. Jock

            I agree bicameral parliaments certainly appear (and in many cases do) to have more accountability, checks and balances.

            I agree the accountability to the electorate is enhanced when both houses are directly elected.

            Its wrong that there is a real risk of theocratic influence from directly appointed religious legislators.

            My only hesitation (in practical terms rather than out of reason, logic or desire) of prioritising significant reform in the Lords is that this may then become an obstruction to other legislation in the Commons and Lords and delay or damage the opportunity to gain SSM.

            I acknowledge there will always be pressing laws in parliamentary consideration where some could argue that potentially blocking constitutional legislation should be deferred until the pressing law was enacted.

          6. The one thing I would say is that Scottish Parliament was set up as a unicameral parliament and the committee system was intend to serve the same function as the Lords does to the Commons. I think this does generally work, but there have been occasions when the recommendations of the relevant committee have not been listened to – the fox hunting ban was the first and probably most high profile case where the committee recommended changes to the Bill but they weren’t lisented to and it was brought forward anyway rather than taking a bit more time to get it right.

            Also, this is the first time the Scot Parl has had a majority government and it’s MSPs control the committees, which in theory is undemocratic as Bills could be rubber stamped without being scrutinised, although I am unaware of it being a problem so far.

            So I think it’s better overall to have a 2nd chamber, but one which is fully elected, though!

  5. Interesting article – its worth bearing in mind that of the 60 not declaring their intentions – some more may well be in support of equality.

    The Catholic church resort to demanding for a referendum on civil rights when they know that the usual democratic means will result in fairness and prevent them denying integrity, equality and fairness for LGBT people.

    Some would ask whether they would like it if a referendum were held on whether RC church leaders should be free to seek to interfere in civil law – most people (I suspect) would vote no. Or, a referendum on whether the church should be sanctioned for its failrues to deal with child abuse and cover ups – or a referendum on whether the church should pay tax?

    Referendums should not be held on issues of civil rights – its appallingly abhorrent and immoral.

    I noticed this week that homophobe MSP Bill Walker was arrested this week. He still refuses to resign. Walker being one of the MSP’s who oppose equality.

    Great news for

    1. Scotland. Important that the Scottish Government take strong, clear and decisive action soon.

      They have the mandate, they have the arithmetic, no one can say they havent thought about it (given the consultation) … now is the time to act and do the right thing. Equality matters.

      1. I agree. The SNP Scottish Government have absolutely no excuse to drop it now. I honestly don’t think they will, especially now, but this next week is going to be murder until I hear Nicola Sturgeon saying that they’re going ahead with it!

    2. Equality Network 10 Jun 2012, 2:36pm

      The SoS story got the numbers slightly wrong. It’s 51 who have not declared, and that includes the Presiding Officer who only votes on a tie. 69 are declared so far in favour, and 9 against. We think that of the 51 undeclared, a lot will be in favour when it comes to the votes.

      You can see the latest updated details here: http://www.equalmarriage.org.uk/support

      1. Just to follow on your point of getting numbers wrong, both the Scotsman and PN put the SNP at 68 MSPs – isn’t it 67? They won 69 seats last year but Tricia Marwick gave up party affiliation to become Presiding Officer, which put them at 68 and then they expelled Bill Walker from the party which means there are 67 SNP members in the Scottish Parliament.

        Not that it makes any difference to this, I suppose, but it’s better to get things correct!

        1. Equality Network 10 Jun 2012, 4:56pm

          You’re right; it’s 67 if you don’t count Tricia Marwick, the Presiding Officer.

          1. As I say, it doesn’t make any difference to the issue of marriage equality, but someone obviously doesn’t like me correcting a small mathematical error seeing as I have a thumbs down already, within 10 minutes of leaving my comment!

            I’d like to ask them exactly what I said in my comment that they object to so much?

      2. @Equality Network

        About 5 days ago, I e-mailed the remaining 3 West Scotland MSPs who still haven’t declared and my constituency MSP too, who hasn’t declared, urging them to sign the pledge in support or at least let you know if they were against it, but they’re all still undeclared! I wish they’d decide one way or another, but preferably in favour of it.

        I realise now that a majority of MSPs are in favour of marriage equality, but it would be great if it was voted through with a massive majority, not just scrape through by 4 or 5 votes!

        1. I think Pink News should perhaps reconsider this rating system. It’s fair enough to be marked down by people who disagree with what I’m saying, but I’ve left several comments today which nobody can have any problem with (like this one above) and within minutes they’ve been marked down.

          I can only conclude it’s people who I’ve had disagreements with on other threads – and the fact they are marking down all my comments suggests I bested them in debate!

          Seriously though, it’s pretty creepy that they’re stalking me on these threads.

          1. Thats two of us being stalked.

            There have been several posts where neither of us have said anything controversial and which the majority of PN readers will agree with and then been flagged down.

            Fortunately, I am here to debate not win popularity contests. I know I have some support on here, which is good to know – but my opinions are strongly held and I will disagree with some people.

            However, when you get flagged down for comments such as “Its good to hear that an Malawi is making progress to improve civil rights” then it does make one pause and sigh!

            Have to say, BennieM – it is rare I disagree with you.

          2. Stu

            Yes, you and I have had a couple of disagreements in the past, but on the big stuff, we tend to agree.

            As I say, I don’t get annoyed at being marked down if people really do disagree with what I say, although I’d prefer it if they also replied too.

            It’s not that this stalker is marking me down that bothers me, it’s that he/she has been doing it within minutes of me posting my comments which means they must be glued to their computer or smart phone constantly refreshing the comments page to see if I’ve left a new comment and it’s being going on all day – it’s very creepy, don’t you think!

            I’ve had comments marked down before, but never like this and I had a couple of disagreements with a few people on the Lynne Featherstone thread yesterday, so it doesn’t take Sherlock Holmes to work out what’s going on!

            But then you and I also had a disagreement on the Lynne Featherstone thread and we’ve not fallen out over it or started acting all creepy!

          3. BennieM

            Yes it is all very creepy and odd – and infantile!

            Its not going to stop me standing up for what I believe in though – and I suspect you neither.

            I also think that when you disagree then in adult debate you might discuss it for a while, and then if not resolved, move on. Thats what I suspect most of the responsible debators on here do.

            Anyway the arrows don’t upset me – bemuse me but not upset.

          4. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t leave comments to be popular either and in previous stories I’ve had a few comments marked down to -6 or -7. Sometimes people don’t agree with me, that’s fair enough. But this wasn’t someone disagreeing with me, it was someone watching to see when I made a comment and doing it within minutes.

          5. I realise you are not out to be popular, either.

            Its the immediacy of the thumbs down that is a little creepy

          6. That’s exactly it, Stu! Thanks for your support, btw.

  6. Equality Network 10 Jun 2012, 2:39pm

    By the way, Scotland on Sunday also has a really good leader, calling on the Scottish Govt to proceed with marriage equality, and adding “There can be no excuses or backtracking.”

    http://www.scotsman.com/scotland-on-sunday/opinion/comment/leader-salmond-s-gay-rights-challenge-1-2347395

    1. I like the article in SoS. I particularly like how it understands the political conundrum faced by Salmond but concludes with:

      “This, however, is a matter of principle. Polls show most Scots are comfortable with the idea of gay marriage. That view is supported by MSPs and has the full backing of this newspaper. There can be no excuses or backtracking. Over to you, First Minister.”

      1. I agree about the Scotland on Sunday editorial. I’m pleased they’re in favour of marriage equality.

        Although, I noticed how marriage equality in Scotland is once again treated differently to the same matter in England.

        For example, the fact Cameron is giving his MPs a free vote is desribed as a climb down but nobody has ever suggested Salmond of a climb down when he has the same policy.

        Also, Cameron is accused of delaying it by not including it in the Queen’s Speech, but it’s still going through consultation so it couldn’t be in the Queen’s Speech. Salmond has avoided even talking about the issue citing the consultation, saying he has to let it run it’s course, Patrick Harvie recently said he was right to do this.

        I just think Cameron is being treated much more harshly than Salmond when they both have done the same things.

  7. Really glad to see most MSP’s support Marriage equality. :D it is also Interesting to see that most opposed were Conservatives. Seems to be an example of the same old Tories always trying to hold back progress!!

  8. I HATE the use of “committed Christian” to describe Brian Souter and his anti-marriage equality position. I’m not a Christian but even I know that “committed Christian” does not equal “anti-gay” or “anti-marriage equality”. I know many committed Christians who are deeply committed to justice and equality, including marriage equality, for GLBT people. Mr. Souter is against marriage equality because he’s ignorant and I suspect more than a bit homophobic. HE hides behind being a committed Christian to excuse his ignorance and homophobia.

    A more accurate description of Mr. Souter would be “a committed anti-gay Christian”.

    1. Or “a Christian committed to promoting ignorance and fear of gay people”.

      1. In my opinion nobody who can hate other people so much has any rright to be called a Chrisian. Didn’t Jesus teach love of our fellow man?

    2. I agree with you. When I was involved in work relating to the repeal of Section 28 we used to get hundreds of letters beginning ‘As a committed christian……’ A stream of bile usually followed.

      For me there have never been 4 words in the English language that are more depressing !

      1. Hayden & John F, I agree with what you say. This man is a horrible bigot and I really wish the SNP didn’t take his money.

        At first I was slightly annoyed that his money has helped to bring about marriage equality in Scotland, as if it’s down to him (in part) that we’re about to get marrige equality (I hope!).

        But then I decided to look at it the other way – this bigot’s money has helped to bring about something that he’ll hate! Serves him right, the nasty homophobe, I’ll bet he’s raging!

        And even if he stopped donating to the SNP over this, the money he’s given so far has already helped to bring in equality for gay people, and there’s nothing he can do about it!

        1. gattagiudecca 10 Jun 2012, 4:46pm

          Very true! He will have so much rage inside him that he cannot direct towards anyone. Sweet justice! He is a very odious individual who bankrolled one of the most disgusting episodes in modern Scottish history. I can imagine terse meetings with his buddy Salmond where he demands his money back!!!

          1. Salmond should throw it back in his face – all in coins!!!

    3. gattagiudecca 10 Jun 2012, 4:42pm

      Wouldn’t it be great if a whole bunch of Christians publicly denounced Souter and declared that his views have absolutely nothing to do with Christianity?! What about a letter to The Scotsman and The Herald, signed by “100 leading Christians”? These types of things are done by all sorts of organisations. So, why don’t ‘moderate Christians organise themselves and take the debate away from the extremists! They should have campaigns against the extremists within Christianity to drive them out and show that Christianity does not revolve around hating the gays.

      1. I’d be happy to sign it !- we jsut need another 99 now !

  9. Robert in S. Kensington 10 Jun 2012, 3:03pm

    Well done, Scotland. Now on to passing the legislation before year’s end which will mean it will be inevitable in England and Wales. I see no reason why this can’t pass in early 2013 at the latest. If Scotland passes it this year, the Tory party in Westminster will be pushed into a corner with no way out but to vote in favour.

    1. I must admit not being clear about the process (so if my views on timing are out – I apologise) about passing of legislation at Holyrood – but I would hope they should be able to get this law passed inside 6 months. Scotland could feasibly have the law in place by January 2013.

      There is no reason Westminster do not have a bill to bring in equal marriage going through the Commons by around the time the Scottish government has succeeded in bringing equality. That would be kudos to the Scottish government and an incentive to Westminster.

      1. Robert in S. Kensington 10 Jun 2012, 3:55pm

        Stu, I think Scotland will probably enact legislation before Westminster does. It will be interesting to see the impact of that if it were to happen and hopefully will.

        From what I know, after the consultation in London ends June 14, a first draft of a bill will emerge sometime in the Autum or before year’s end apparently. A second bill follows for any amendments then a third and final reading before it’s voted on. Hopefully, more and more MPs will be in favour than those against and it would be wonderful if it passes with a comfortable majority. It would really send a clear message to the naysayers and shut them up once and for all. I think the reason they’re so vociferously against it is that they know it’s inevitable, after seeing Denmark pass it last week and now Scotland with a clear majority to introduce it, as well as France and Australia making noise. The religious nutters have been active in every country where its passed, so it comes as no surprise. We’ll win.

        1. Stu and Robert

          I’m no expert either, but I expect the Scot Gov will draw up a Bill which I think goes to committee for recommendations on any changes and then I think after that it goes to a vote in the Scottish Parliament.

          If anyone else knows anything about the process, please let us know!

          Of course, the Daily Mail was convinced months ago that a bill was drawn up in secret, even before the consultation was over, and that the consultation was just a sham!

          1. Equality Network 10 Jun 2012, 5:06pm

            The standard process is:

            The draft bill is published for a short consultation on the details

            The bill is introduced in the Parliament; possibly with some detail changes from draft version

            Stage 1: a Parliamentary Committee takes evidence on the bill from interested parties, and then publishes a report on the bill, recommending whether the general principles should be agreed, and potentially suggesting changes

            Stage 1 debate: the whole Parliament debates and votes whether to accept the general principles of the bill and allow it to proceed

            Stage 2: The same Committee debates and votes on detailed amendments, which can be submitted by any MSP

            Stage 3: the whole Parliament debates and votes oany additional amendments and then votes on whether to pass the bill.

          2. Equality Network 10 Jun 2012, 5:08pm

            One month later the bill gets royal assent and becomes an act, unless it has been challenged in court as outwith the competence of the Parliament, in which case there may be a delay

            Some time later the act comes into effect, after the Scottish Govt have put in place the necessary paperwork changes

          3. Equality Network

            Thanks for explaining the process. Can you make a guess at how long it will take – assuming it all goes okay and there are no hold-ups, what’s the minimum amount of time?

          4. Equality Network 10 Jun 2012, 6:50pm

            Stages1 to 3 would take maybe six months of Parliament sitting time, at least half of that on stage 1. Stage 1 involves several weeks for written submissions to the Committee, followed by several weeks of oral evidence, followed by the Committee writing its report, and then a gap before the debate of the whole Parliament.

            Real time could be longer than 6 months though because of Parliamentary recesses. For example, a bill introduced in March might pass by December.

            The time taken before stage 1 starts would depend on how long, after a decision is made to proceed, it takes the Govt to draft the bill, and then how long the consultation period is on the draft, and how long it takes to adjust the bill before stage 1. This is a medium sized bill so it might be several months to draft it depending on how much work has been done already, and then a few more months to consult and adjust the draft.

            However, it should certainly be possible for the bill to be fully passed sometime during 2013.

          5. Equality Network

            Thanks! So it looks very likely that gay people will be able to get married in Scotland within a year to 18 months? That is fantastic!

            And please pass my thanks on to everyone at the Equality Network for working so hard on this!

          6. Equality Network 10 Jun 2012, 7:55pm

            With Scottish Govt commitment, the bill could be passed in 2013. But after the Civil Partnership Bill was passed, it took 1 year before CPs became available, because of consequential amendments to other laws and setting up the procedures. I think that equal marriage should be able to come into effect faster than that. After all, Denmark’s is coming into effect one week after their bill passed!

            It will take longer than that in Scotland, in part because of the mandatory one month delay for royal assent. But I certainly think it could be done in a lot less than a year. I suppose that if Westminster passes a bill in 2013 also, the two Govts may want to synchronise bringing the law into effect.

          7. I think it would be quite good if the 2 governments could work together to sychronise it, like you suggest.

            Then again, the UK and Scottish governments actually working together? We’ve seen how well that’s gone when it comes to the independence referendum!

            Seriously, though, if they are dealt with seperately, I don’t think there’ll be much in it – a few months at the most perhaps.

            But I now definately feel 100% confident that marriage equality will be a reality in Scotland, England & Wales.

          8. Not sure its realistic to expect the Westminster government to synchronise with the SNP led govt in Scotland on any issue – although it is a nice idea.

            I am very confident equal marriage is going to happen. After all, it is the right thing to do.

    2. Well maybe Scotland will get there before England this time. It might make up for the fact that although England decriminalised homosexuality in 1967 (coincidentally the year I left Scotland) it took them until 1980 before it was decriminalised in Scotland!

  10. Really glad MSP’s have given much support for Gay marriage. Also interesting to see that most of the opposition comes from the Conservatives same old Tories. Just proves that you can never trust a tory!

  11. gattagiudecca 10 Jun 2012, 4:49pm

    Looks like there is a race on between England and Scotland to see who brings it in first!! This is wonderful as it probably will bring it in in the whole of the UK much quicker than it otherwise would have. Seems like a bit of competitive rivalry is good for the UK as a whole.

  12. Mumbo Jumbo 10 Jun 2012, 6:10pm

    Meanwhile, the Raping Catholic Church and their friends at the Telegraph just won’t let it go:

    http://goo.gl/SD5O6

    The comments are the usual sewer.

    1. Cardinal O’Brien must have went mental when he read the Scotland on Sunday today over his cornflakes!

      Equality trumps the “right” of the religous to hate, and it is clear that governments throughout the western world have realised that. The religious bigots just can’t believe their long-held authority over society is no more and they’re starting to panic.

    2. The Telegraph has turned into a low-grade homophobic propagandist rag.

      The positive thing about the bigoted religious opposition to equal marriage is that it is exposing how appalling dogmatic religion and its narrow-minded adherents are, which is uniting the LGBT community and our allies in opposition to them worldwide.

      Good things will come out of all this, not just despite the bigoted opposition, but precisely because of it: because of how it is uniting us, and drawing in more and more allies.

  13. With marriage equality now looking like being a reality for Scotland, England & Wales, does anyone know about Northern Ireland? Is it even on the cards there? I assume it’s a devolved matter, like in Scotland, otherwise it would have been in the UK government’s plans.

    1. I see my cyber stalker has struck again! What, don’t you think people in NI should have marriage equality? I must have really got under your skin for you to act so creepy! Feel free to continue marking down my comments! If that’s the highlight of your life, then you must lead a very sad existence indeed! I’ll let everyone else make up their own minds about what I’ve got to say!

      1. Bennie just a thought, I read PN on my IPhone, I very rarely like or dislike a comment but when I do the icons are so small that it can mean to like/dislike a comment and it does the opposite! Anyway hopefully that will clear this issue up and you can stop hijacking this discussion with nonsense about having a stalker. Back on topic this is great news, I’m sure the whole process will start very soon :-D

        1. Brido, I’ve done the same on my smart phone a couple of times. But I’ve discounted that as a theory because it’s been happening all day within minutes of me posting comments. As for my calling them a stalker, I don’t honestly believe they are in the true sense of the word, but by calling them that it may make them realise what they’re doing is creepy and stop.

          I’m very sorry to have ruined your enjoyment of reading the comments, but this person has ruined it for me all day, so I’m sure you understand! Although, to be honest, you’re replying to me like this is just carrying it on!

          There was a camapign on here recently to ignore trolls and it disrupted quite a few stories, but it worked in the end.

          1. I wasn’t intentionally carrying it on, I was just responding to you and trying to give you a bit of advice in regards to it possibly being an accident. A few thumbs down ruins your day, really? Are you sure your not disliking your own comments just for attention :-p

          2. You can hardly have a go at me admitting it bothered me when you replied to one of my comments first, saying I was hijacking this discussion, so it obviously bothered you enough to do so. If I wanted attention I can think of better people than you to get it from. I can’t be bothered discussing this any further, after all, we wouldn’t want to hijack this discussion.

          3. You could think of better people than me to get it from, sorry do you even know me? Oh yeah and I disliked your comment, hope that doesn’t make you cry, take your insecurities elsewhere, this comments section is no place for them or attention seekers such as yourself.

          4. Brido

            This comments section is no place for your snide comments.

          5. Stu, shut up. I try to help the guy with a bit of advice, and he takes exception to it & gets all aggressive. Seems like if he doesnt get peoples acceptance and ‘thumbs up’ we all need to listen to his crap about having a stalker. Turned a perfectly healthy discussion into him having a stalker. It’s attention seeking and pathetic.

          6. Brido, you’re the one who keeps replying to me – that seems like attention seeking to me. You intially engaged me in this argument by provoking me by calling my comments nonsense and then saying I was attention seeking but then you get annoyed when I reply to your antagonisation – that’s what bullies do. This time I really am finishing this because I’m not going to argue with a troll.

          7. You live in another world Bennie. My first comment was intended to help you. Now I’m a bully and a troll, your what a poor victim? Your a disgrace and an embarassment. Please DO NOT reply to this again, we have both said our piece.

          8. So insulting someone – which you did right from the off – is giving advice? I’m glad I’m not a friend of yours! By the way, for someone who’s so concerned about the subject of this thread, you’ve not actually contributed anything to it, all you’ve done is have a go at me for disrupting it which only serves to disrupt it further.

          9. Brido

            No, I won’t “shut up”.

            Predominantly this comments section remains about Scottish SSM.

            Yes, there has been an aside about BennieM and myself appearing to be stalked. Its relevant as an aside to comment on activity on PN.

            I feel your comment was harsh, brusque and callous. The snide remarks that followed were unnecessary. Your retort to me to “shut up”, infantile.

  14. GingerlyColors 10 Jun 2012, 7:17pm

    They had better install an extra anvil in the Old Blacksmiths Shop in Gretna Green as it looks like that Scotland will beat the rest of the UK into marriage equality.

    1. And gay Christians will probably have to travel to Gretna Green to get married even if civil marriage equality is approved in England & Wales.

  15. Excellent news :-) Now get it made into law.

  16. Love this:

    17 Reasons Why Gay Marriage is “Wrong”:

    17. Gay marriage will change the foundation of society; we could never adapt to new social norms. Just like we haven’t adapted to cars, the service-sector economy, or longer life spans.

    16. Gay culture is a new fad created by the liberal media to undermine long-standing traditions. We know this is true because gay sex did not exist in ancient Greece and Rome.

    15. There are plenty of straight families looking to adopt, and every unwanted child already has a loving family. This is why foster care does not exist.

    14. Conservatives know best how to create strong families. That is why it is not true that Texas and Mississippi have the highest teen birthrates, and Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire have the lowest. This is a myth spread by the liberal media.

    13. Marriage is a religious institution, defined by churches. This is why atheists do not marry. Christians also never get a divorce.

    12. Children can never succeed

    1. without a male and a female role model at home. That’s why our society has no single parents.

      11. Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country. That’s why we have only one religion in the USA of Europe.

      10. Obviously gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.

      9. Straight marriages are valid because they produce children. Gay couples, infertile couples, and old people shouldn’t be allowed to marry because our orphanages aren’t full yet, and the world needs more children.

      8. Gay marriage should be decided by the people and their elected representatives, not the courts. The framers checked the courts, which represent mainstream public opinion, with legislatures created to protect the rights of minorities from the tyranny of the majority. Interference by courts in this matter is inappropriate, just as it has been every time the courts have tried

    2. to hold back legislatures pushing for civil rights.

      7. Straight marriage will be less meaningful if gay marriage were allowed; the sanctity of Britany Spears’ 55-hour just-for-fun marriage would be destroyed.

      6. Civil unions, providing most of the same benefits as marriage with a different name are better, because “separate but equal” institutions are a good way to satisfy the demands of uppity minority groups.

      5. Straight marriage has been around a long time and hasn’t changed at all; women are still property, blacks still can’t marry whites, and divorce is still illegal.

      4. Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

      3. Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

      2. Being gay is not natural. Real people always reject unnatural things like eyeglasses, polyester,

    3. and air conditioning.

      1. METEORS and VOLCANOES.

      ROFL ;-)

      Seems most MSPs have come to recognise the maliciousness and “humour” of the grotesque arguments of those who are either anti-equality or anti-gay. Equality is going to happen in Scotland and elsewhere because a) it is the right thing to do b) the arguments against it are either false, unreasonable, inaccurate or irrelevant and c) society demands fairness without theocratic influence.

      1. Love it, Steve!

  17. Brian Souter is not a committed Christian, but a committed homophobic bigot!

    1. Jock S. Trap 11 Jun 2012, 10:22am

      Ain’t that the truth!!!

  18. Cardinal Capone 11 Jun 2012, 12:14pm

    One day everyone will be amazed that straight people thought it was any of their business whether gay people marry eachother or not.

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