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Northern Ireland: Alliance Party votes in favour of equal marriage

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  1. Pavlos Prince of Greece 2 Sep 2012, 2:22am

    This ‘robust protections’ for churches is just ridiculous piece of theater – who really in this country can believe in the possibility to force Catholic or Anglican priest to conduct same-sex marriage? In the fact, its not a ‘protection’ from, of course, very ‘influential’ gay people – its demonstration of power against all us, as saying: ‘we not agree with this, and will fighting for ever’.

    1. I agree , it is a very emotionally charged way to word it, I would prefer they used exemptions for churches, they are not under any threat and they do not require protection from anything.

  2. GingerlyColors 2 Sep 2012, 5:05am

    I have always seen the Alliance Party as the voice of reason in Northern Ireland. Unlike other parties the Alliance took a non-sectarian stance on politics.
    During the Troubles, long before the signing of the Good Friday Agreement I recall Ken Maginnis of the Ulster Unionists as being ‘one of the moderates’ and he even engaged with Sinn Féin’s Gerry Adams back in the late 1980’s. But it was Ken Maginnis who made those recent, homophobic comments that got himself drummed out of politics.
    It is time that religion took a back seat in Northern Irish politics as it has done in the Republic.

  3. Good news, but I agree that the words ‘robust protection’ are emotive nonsense. It conjures up absurd images of riot police stopping same-sex couples and their wedding-guests trying to batter down church doors!

  4. Robert in S. Kensington 2 Sep 2012, 12:39pm

    I’m convinced that deep down the religious cults in opposition know full well that they won’t be forced to comply with equal marriage laws. They’re just throwing it out there to foment dissent and hysteria to get their way but it won’t work. What they’re doing is only portraying themselves as the idiots they are, alienating themselves from the more reasoned segment of the population. All of that nonsense about polygamy and incest hasn’t happened and won’t happen. The public I’m sure knows it because there’s been no evidence or demand for it. I don’t envisage any sane government advocating for it either. It seems that religious nutters are the only ones obsessed with it as well as gay sex. Quite revealing.

    1. I think you’ve got it in a nutshell Robert.

    2. Unfortunately, I don’t think it is mere political contrivance. Homophobia runs deep in the bones of many in Ulster, a region that is morbidly un-evolved where religion is concerned.

  5. “robust protection for faith groups”.
    Just as they have robust protections from government intervention in church child abuse.
    The scandal of children being raped by priests and clergy is ignored by government and dismissed as an internal problem for the churches.

  6. Pavlos Prince of Greece 2 Sep 2012, 4:52pm

    Is same-sex marriage in Northern Ireland now a done deal, yes? Republicans is yet in favor of it, and liberal wing of the Unionists too.

  7. Paddyswurds 2 Sep 2012, 8:08pm

    This is great news but tempered somewhat by the fact that we still have the Stoops and the bible thumpers of the DUP to surmount and I fear that will be a mountain too far. There are moves afoot to bring back the awful Iris Robinson to the DUP and we all know the bigotry and hyprocracy of her position. Then there is Donaldson, the Daniel O’Donnell of the DUP and arch high priest of hatred Gregory Campbell amongst other equally bigoted dinosaurs. Ulster may, as far as equality goes, once again be left behind in the backward mists of time…..

    1. What, that adulterous, homophobic, butcher’s sausage loving and butcher’s son loving old slapper isn’t planning a comeback is she?

      1. Paddyswurds 3 Sep 2012, 11:13am

        I’m afraid so. There are moves afoot within the DUP to find her a safe seat for the next election. Whether this gains any foothold at the next Party Conference is yet to be seen but, the signs are ominous. Chances of Marriage Equality in Ulster are i’m afraid to say as far back se ever even though two parties now support it. The SDLP (Stoops) and the DUP are avowedly against it especially the DUP which is the political wing of the vile evangelical Free Presbyterian Church which is against everything basically. Demands for rights are, amongst the thicker planks of Unionist society in Ulster, seen as a Nationalist trait so they will always oppose them on principle. Hatred is, amongst these poorly educated people, seen as a virtue and fascism, racism, homophobia, and religious strife are the corner stones of their existence. ……

        1. Paddyswurds 3 Sep 2012, 11:21am

          .. … …Poor education is probably the single most cause of these traits amongst the unionist population, because while education is available to all, only the Nationalist tradition avail of it and do so aggressively with over 80% of the University places being filled by Nationalists. The old “big house” mentality that once ruled throughout Ireland is still rife amongst unionist youth in that they expect to get the job any way education or no simply because they see themselves as the rightful candidates as Protestants. This is the attitude that brought about the civil rights abuses and marches in the late sixties and the Troubles of the last 40 years. So unless CallmeDave includes the north of Ireland in his Marriage Equality bill, we in Ulster will have a long long wait.

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