Reader comments · Muslim council wants exemption from “discriminatory” marriage equality law · PinkNews

Enter your email address to receive our daily LGBT news roundup

You're free to unsubscribe at any time.


Muslim council wants exemption from “discriminatory” marriage equality law

Post your comment

Comments on this article are now closed.

Reader comments

  1. They already have the same exemption. Everybody does. The CofE just needs extra reassurance because they are the state church.

    1. So why did the Church in Wales also get the extra bit making it illegal? There hasn’t been an established state church in Wales since 1920.

      1. The Church in Wales got lumped in with the CoE because they specifically said that they wanted to be treated exactly the same.

        They got their wish. Now they’re not happy with it.

      2. The CiW are put in the same category because, although they’re disestablished, they have a legal obligation to marry any couple who have a connection with their parish in the same way as the CofE has in England.

    2. Robert in S. Kensington 18 Dec 2012, 3:31pm

      In addition, the CoE issued a statement saying they were ‘comfortable’ with the quadruple lock shortly after the announcement in Parliament. Rowan Williams’ and Sentamu’s silence give support to it in spite of a small group of Anglican clergy who support us. I’ve not heard one Tory bigot complain about the lock either. So that’s shut them up about mythical lawsuits ensuing and churches being forced to comply with equal marriage.

      Notice they’ve not been banging on so much about polygamy, bestiality and incestuous relationships being demanded prior to the announcement? It’s really taken the wind out of their sails. I don’t think any of them expected a ban on the opt-in since laws already in place prevent any religious denomination being forced to marry us. They wouldn’t dare back down now and admit they were being specifically targeted. They brought it on themselves, willingly.

      1. Posted on Eisner awarding wniinng comic-shop, Zeus Comics is in Dallas which may or may not be on your route.Though I think you’ve hit upon a fantastic idea something we maybe should talk about off-site.If I don’t talk to you before hand, have a safe trip!

  2. Seeing as they are not the established church in the UK, they will have to use the “opt-in” system.

    Again, I can’t see many gay muslims wanting to get married in mosques but I may be wrong.

    1. Jock S. Trap 18 Dec 2012, 12:30pm

      Just like any religion there are those who wish to perform marriage Equally even some Imams.

      Gay or Straight those who follow their chosen religion Should be able to be married with in them, regardless of my or other beliefs.

      However it is fair to say that the most intolerant of religion has to be from Muslims and I have to say to ALL those opposed deeply to marriage Equality whether Christian, Jew, Muslim, Jedi…. If you don’t like it, the UK is based on such Freedoms that allows you to move to a country to suit!

      1. Saudi Arabia is quite nice at this time of year.

    2. George Broadhead 19 Dec 2012, 8:59am

      I have no doubt that many gay Muslims want to get married in a mosque since they are able to ignore the homophobia inherent in Islam and shown by so many Islamacists.

  3. So the end result can be the same that the Muslim Council of Britain can be exempt from performing same-sex marriages? But the way the legislation goes about it differs.

    I don’t understand why two churches are listed in the legislation and others can opt-in. Surely it would be non-discriminatory if all churches/religious organisations were dealt with in the same way.

    BTW, I’m an atheist and homosexual. I don’t want to be married in/by any religious organisation. In case it matters.

    1. The reason why the Church of England is thought to need this extra protection is that they are established, ie the state church. Unless an exemption is clearly spelled out and legislated for like the Church not having to marry divorced people, then it has to take all comers and marry them.
      I personally would have thought that it is enough to make it another exception that CoE vicars won’t have to marry same-sex couples just like they don’t have to marry divorced people but religious leaders made themselves sound like this was never going to be enough.
      Apparently the government thinks it takes a ban to guaranteed that they won’t get forced. The way legislation works, the CoE would have to change canon law first via its synod (yep, the same one that refused to decide for female bishops) and the state would then be required to change legislation – that’s when their opt-in would happen. Which is probably not going to happen for a very long time. But that’s how it needs to work.

      1. It means a vicar will be chucked in the slammer for attempting to perform a same sex wedding, Can’t wait to see that one happening!

        1. I don’t think a vicar would get into trouble with state law, I think he or she would be in hot water with the church.
          And under these proposals the marriage may not be legal.
          I heard that some Anglican clergy want to carry out same-sex weddings and are thinking of using chapels or meeting rooms by faith groups who opted in, like the Quakers. I’m not sure if I remember this correctly. The couples might still have to get legally married by a registrar first so maybe these proposed ceremonies are more like religious blessings than actual weddings?

    2. And the Church in Wales seems to have gotten included because it specifically said it wanted to be treated just like the Church of England and now feels that it has egg on its face for the inclusion in the ban proposal!
      Problem is that they are not a state church, they got disestablished in 1920. Whoops.

      No-one else needs to be banned, the provision is sufficient that their umbrella organisation will have to opt-in before anyone in their churches, mosques or synagogues will be able to marry a same-sex couple. Except for Reform Judaism, they already opted in. I would imagine that anyone who went ahead anyway may run into the problem that the state might not consider the resulting marriage legally binding. Because of those provisions.
      That’s my understanding anyway but I’m not a lawyer.

      1. I should point out that although the Church in Wales is is not an ‘established’ Church, many of the pre-1920 laws continue to apply to the Church in Wales as with the Church of England. Who the Church in Wales can legally marry is still governed by UK Act of Parliament, the latest one being the Marriage (Wales) Act 2010

        Even now, if the Church in Wales did want to marry same sex couples then the UK Parliament would have to change the UK law for it to be applicable!

        1. Interesting!
          So the ban (the ‘forth lock’) of the Church in Wales is not needed because they already can’t be forced anyway?

          1. I am not an expert in the field, and I stand corrected, but it would seem that technically, the Church in Wales Act, 1914 in effect disestablished the Church of England in Wales starting in 1920, in effect terminating Royal Supremacy for the purpose of the Church in Wales in making official appointments. It meant the legal severance of the Welsh dioceses from the Church of England, and the reconstitution of the Welsh church on a new legal basis as the’ Church in Wales’. However, as stated previously, UK Parliament Law, including that on marriage, still applies to the Church in Wales! It follows, therefore, that unless the UK Parliament alters the law by redefining marriage as applicable to the Church in Wales, it would not be possible for the Church in Wales to go it alone and marry same sex couples anyway. I would therefore question the need for the ‘ban’ as the practical effect is the same until Parliament amends the marriage laws for the Church in Wales.

      2. I think I should point out that although the Church in Wales is not an ‘established’ Church, The Welsh Church Act, 1914 stated that the pre-1920 law (including the laws of the ‘established church’ of England) continue to apply to the Church in Wales! This includes the laws relating to marriage and who can be married in the Church in Wales, the latest being the Marriage (Wales) Act 2010:
        The result of this is that the Church in Wales is similar to the Church of England in its legal obligation to offer marriage to parishioners. In the event of the Church in Wales wanting to marry same sex couples it would be necessary for the UK Parliament to amend the law!

    3. Robert in S. Kensington 18 Dec 2012, 3:39pm

      The CoE in particular wanted to be treated differently because it’s the state church. It demanded written assurances and protection from being sued and forced to conduct same-sex marriages. The government complied with their demands, rightly so. Nobody else, not even the Roman cult made such a request. So I see no reason why the Muslim council should have a problem, because there isn’t any. They’re free to do as they wish as are all other denominations. They will still be protected from being forced to conduct same-sex marriages unless it’s agreed upon by their governing body even without the quadruple lock applied to them.

  4. Peter Robertson 18 Dec 2012, 11:01am

    Yet again, the religious are offended, this time by being told they can do what ever they want about marriage equality.

    1. The recriminations have started. They’re offended about not being discriminated against, while the CofE is now offended for being discriminated against. The muslims will have to discriminate themselves while the CofE will have their discrimination outsourced by the government. This is obviously a form of discrimination.

      They both want to be in charge of the discrimination equally otherwise it is discriminatory, discrimination.

      So it’s goodnight from him, and it’s goodnight from me. Goodnight.

  5. Religion for these people seems to be defined more by what they are AGAINST than what they are FOR.

    1. That’s true of all of them, only the ‘chosen ones’ get the trip to the special padded cell… I mean Heaven.

  6. ...Paddyswurds 18 Dec 2012, 11:13am

    I can’t see why the Government included the Religions anyway. it is a civil matter. I suggest a return to that with the clause that all and any including the state cults of England and Wales could then apply for a licence to hold and perform SSMs in their respective establishments and place of business. Somehow I can’t see many or any of them experiencing a sudden windfall.

    1. The Government ran into the problem that if they made it impossible for all religious groups to conduct marriages (if they chose to) then they would highly likely get sued. Not exactly freedom of religion if a faith group can’t do the ceremonies it wants to do, is it?
      The specific groups who want to marry same-sex couples are the Unitarians, the Quakers and the Reform Jews.
      So I think this is progress.

  7. Paul from Brighton 18 Dec 2012, 11:20am

    Flaming cheek…

    Muslims talking about marriage?

    This is a faith where child brides and forced marriages are acceptable, and honour killings.

    They’d do well to remember this religion is very much tolerated in the UK and if many had their way, it would be outlawed.

    1. Lion in Winter 18 Dec 2012, 12:35pm

      Yes – when I read this article, I immediately imagined a gay couple walking into a mosque and being carried out dead on stretchers. It would be seen as the “honourable” thing to do…

  8. Does the Muslim Council in Britain think Islam is on par with the established Church of England & Wales?

    1. The church in Wales is not established.

  9. The Muslim council aren’t the state religion. They already have an opt out. But if the Queen decides she want to be a Muslim, so be it.

    Another red herring.
    No case to answer for.
    Don’t perform same sex marriage and you are safe.

    And going by what the Muslim Council is moaning about now, they make the Church of England look like shining examples of liberty (me thinks not, but given that the C of E is now running scared of having itself legally locked in, what other conclusion can we come to?) And if the Muslim Council wins this one, what other laws of the land will they be asking to be exempted from, what other laws will they ask for to be disregarded?

    Very dangerous situation if you ask me.

  10. Muslim Councils in the UK and else where should never speak of discrimination, because they are some of the worse offenders of the very thing they are protesting against.

  11. So the Muslim Council WANTS to be banned? The opt out isn’t enough?

    Why? Is opting out just not bigoted enough?

  12. Robert in S. Kensington 18 Dec 2012, 12:08pm

    So what makes the Muslim Council think it speaks for all religions? The CoE really wanted a ban on all religions opting in so it wouldn’t look the odd one out. What this brilliant piece of legislation will do is marginalise it above all others. It demanded these protections, the government listened and gave it to them. What more do they want? I note Rowan Williams isn’t saying a thing is he and Justin Welby hardly a squeak. In a way, they’ve conceded some of their power back to the government. Maybe the next set of protections they’ll demand will be to abandon marrying people altogether. Fine with me. All marriages should be civil in my view. Had that been the case, this nonsense about lawsuits wouldn’t have arisen, and a lot of the hateful rhetoric might have abated. Too late. Serves them right. They brought it on themselves. The addage…’be careful what you wish for’ has finally come true for them.

  13. Jock S. Trap 18 Dec 2012, 12:25pm

    They don’t listen do they?

    Whether they like it or not Muslim is a small religion in the UK, although even the Christians are becoming a minority these days.

    Fact that already have the exemptions and should stop acting the ‘Hard done by’ religion.

    Mind you am suck of this so called Religious Freedom that seem to want to dictate over other, open minded people, with these faiths and stop their choices of Religious Freedom!

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 18 Dec 2012, 4:44pm

      No, Jock, they don’t listen and they certainly don’t read, but that can be said for many in opposition, not just muslims. The Tory bigots especially never listened attentively and haven’t reacted since Maria Miller gob-smacked the CoE hierarchy and called its bluff. She disarmed them and they just don’t like it but notice that none of them who sought the special protections haven’t dared to protest, least of all their Tory back bencher supporters. It was a brilliant move on Miller’s part.

  14. That There Other David 18 Dec 2012, 12:32pm

    The Muslim Council is correct. The proposed law is discriminatory, and the best way for the government to deal with it is to remove this legal ban nonsense and allow the CoE and CoW to just not opt-in. Those churches should be treated exactly as all the other religious groups under the law.

    1. Susanne.D.Nimes 18 Dec 2012, 2:52pm

      Agreed, Other Dave.

      The fourth “lock” is totally redundant, it doesn’t achieve anything that isn’t covered by the other three points.

      If people think that the CofE won’t be able to choose not to opt in because of their link with the state then… maybe they should sever their link with the state?

      Or is it overall just too sweet a deal for them to give up?!

    2. Why not just move to an Islamic state? That’s where all homophobic muslims belong.

  15. If they are not satisfied with the ways in which things are done in this country, let them go and live in a tolerant, democratic, Muslim country such as Saudi Arabia.

    1. George Broadhead 19 Dec 2012, 8:53am

      Not to mention Iran!

  16. “No-one in their right mind should accept such a discriminatory law. It should be amended to give exactly the same exemption to all the religions.”
    Translation: we want a guarantee that no progressive mosque (if such as thing exists in the UK) or Iman would be allowed to “opt-in” in order to perform the ceremonies, everything else would be utterly discriminatory.
    It’s highly ironic that MCB complains about being discriminated against when their whole religion is based on discrimination.

    1. typo: if such a thing exists

      1. typo: Imam

        Sorry… I should spell check my comments first

      2. Yes, saying that a book of poems is from the heart might sound ccilhe, but there is a reason ccilhes become ccilhes it’s because they have been used over and over when found to be true. I was quite impressed by Love Poems for the One You Love, and extremely surprised that I was so impressed. This is, compared to some other Kindle ebooks, not a dirt-cheap book of poems tossed together. Thank goodness! Keep in mind, this REALLY works well for men to keep in a hidden drawer to pull out and melt his love interest at various strategic times! Her heart will soften with these. For example, the aptly titled, Cuddle Time, might sound like a sort of syrupy rhyme but it’s extremely touching, especially to a woman in love, and this one poem won a Valentine’s Day competition for good reason. It’s poetry with depth that the title belies a bit and causes its hearer or reader to be surprised in a very good way upon hearing the stanzas. Men, this book is not for the faint-hearted, it is for REAL M

    2. Oh! Now I get it. You just opened my eyes to something.

      The Muslim Council is worried that a progressive mosque which isn’t beholden to them will show them up! Yeah well, freedom of religion is a wonderful thing.

      1. That There Other David 18 Dec 2012, 1:41pm

        No Mosque is beholden to the Muslim Council. They have no power at all, instead they act as a debating chamber and as spokesmen (gender specific term used purposefully).

      2. Susanne.D.Nimes 18 Dec 2012, 2:54pm

        Yes. Basically, “we group of Muslims here don’t like the idea of gay marriage, so we don’t want any other Muslims in the country to be able to say that they do”.

        It’s a call from one part of a religious group to have their will imposed on every other part of that religious group – an outright demand AGAINST freedom of religion.

      3. Kathryn Howie 18 Dec 2012, 5:04pm

        Yes Giselle, that was my first thoughs about it as well.
        The Muslim Council is concerned that their religion is not so indoctrinated in their adherants as they would like, and fear that a mosque like the recent Gay Mosque in Paris will open in Britain.
        The Human Rights Act, as far as I remember states freedom of religion is an individual right, so for any religion it is literally a two edged sword.

  17. I thought mosques and imams could only do the religious side of Muslim marriage and the couple has to trot off to a registrar to have the marriage recognised legally in UK, is this not the case?

    1. That There Other David 18 Dec 2012, 1:39pm

      You are correct. Only the Church of England have the ability to marry a couple without a registrar being involved somewhere along the process.

      1. Hmm my mother married in a Methodist church and the minister signed the registry, there were no registrars present. (I stood in as ‘father of the bride’ lol)

        When she married #3 in a civil ceremony there were 2 registrars, which I thought was weird.

  18. Um… last time I checked, Islam wasn’t the established church and so wasn’t entitled to the same constitutional deference. However, if the Muslim Council is suggesting in a roundabout way the disestablishment of the C of E, then I’m right behind them!

    1. Susanne.D.Nimes 18 Dec 2012, 2:56pm

      //”constitutional deference”//

      Ugh, those two words make me shudder with disgust.

      That is exactly why the CofE should be disestablished.

      The government is the people. The people should not be deferential to any religious authority they’ve not chosen to place themselves under.

    2. The Church of England should be disestablished no other religion should be classed as more important than another, I was raised as a Catholic myself and I fully support same sex marriage and it hurts me that the Catholic Church is so damn bigoted against same sex couples even more so than the CofE.

      The law banning the Church of England and Church of Wales from carrying out same sex weddings is out of order they should be allowed to opt in like other religions and other Churches.

      Personally I don`t know why the Muslim Council is moaning for afterall if they don`t opt in (which they won`t) they won`t be allowed to perform them anway.

      I am a firm supporter of the secular state in which religion is a matter for personal choice and where all people of faith and non faith are treated equally and allowed to believe and practice the way they wish but religion should not infringe the rights of others.

      I think the government needs to go back to drawing board with this.

  19. Mumbo Jumbo 18 Dec 2012, 1:36pm

    A number of religions (eg CoE/Catholics) are licensed to act as agents of the state and vicars/priests etc. marry couples by supervising the signing of civil marriage papers after a legally meaningless religious ceremony.

    As imams and mosques are not similarly licensed to act as a de facto registrar and supervise the signing of the civil marriage contract (a Muslim must go to the registry office to get married and then have a blessing afterwards) this makes no sense.

    It is demanding to be prevented from something they do not do, cannot do and do not want to do in future.

  20. All these arguments and anti gay attitudes from all sorts of non friendly faiths,are ample enough reason to me as to why this country made a bad mistake in allowing faith schools to take hold. Can you imagine the horrendous years a young gay person will endure if sent to one of these faith schools. Makes me shudder! This is one law that that i believe will come back and bite back at the state hard.

    1. That There Other David 18 Dec 2012, 2:02pm

      Faith schools should be forced to go self-funding or get into line with the state curriculum IMO. They cross the line between education and indoctrination, the latter of which should never be funded by the taxpayer under any circumstances.

      If people want their kids to learn their faith the place to do it is at their local place of worship.

      1. Susanne.D.Nimes 18 Dec 2012, 3:00pm

        I’m not sure faith schools should be allowed even if they are funded entirely by religious followers.

        Kids born into every family deserve the same high standard of education, and the same zero-tolerance approach to discrimination.

        That simply doesn’t seem possible to guarantee so long as children born to religious parents can be forced to attend religious schools. Let all education be secular – there’s no logical reason to do otherwise.

  21. Hmmm “No-one in their right mind should accept such a discriminatory law” I agree, no one should accept the fact that because they are a same sex couple someone should be able to deny them the right to marry.

  22. So long as it’s an opt-in system and no religious institution will be forced to conduct the marriages, why does the Muslim Council of Britain need the ban? Surely it can just decide not to opt in?

    1. Susanne.D.Nimes 18 Dec 2012, 3:01pm

      Apparently such a thought process is beyond this group…

      They seem to be hankering after a law that prevents other Muslims, who don’t share their view, from being able to opt-in.

  23. This is simply shitstirring: the strategy being that if the polititians can’t agree on the detail of how to implement Equal Marriage, it won’t get passed at all.

  24. Somehow i can’t see many couples going to a mosque asking to be married.Many still have an issue with womens rights.Thankfully they are not the state church.

  25. GulliverUK 18 Dec 2012, 3:05pm

    I don’t think we should pay too much (like “any”) attention to a self-appointed group which pretends to speak for Muslims in the UK. The MCB has a shocking homophobic past, and clearly is still very homophobic today. Again, it’s about interpretation, because I’ve seen others interpret the Koran in entirely different ways. Just because an interpretation is not, today, mainstream, doesn’t make it invalid or wrong. Most people once believed the world was flat — and I’m betting most of them got that from religion !

    1. GulliverUK 18 Dec 2012, 3:10pm

      … thinking about it, I wonder if they want the same ban as the CofE because they’ve got some fantasy that Islam is some sort of alternative state religion. What conclusion could you draw otherwise? CofE and CofW up in arms about the prospect of having their religious freedoms constrained, and wannaby MCB saying it wants the same. As if.

      Don’t make me a ruler, because I would be a dictator and ban all religions !!! :D (I’m joking in case anyone has their sense-of-humour chip turned off :) )

  26. Norris Nordin 18 Dec 2012, 4:27pm

    The Muslim Council of Great Britain calls the legislation discriminatory? As I understand the legislation, it isn’t affected. Guess they feel they feel a need for some press coverage.

  27. Islam: the most anti-gay religion in the world.

    While mainstream Christianity is modernising, Islam remains a basically fundamentalist creed mired in the Middle Ages.

    It has been hard enough for young LGBT people coming to terms with their sexuality in Christian (and nominally Christian) families.

    How dreadful it must be for LGBT children, and adults, trying to do the same in the Islamic equivalents.

    The international LGBT community has rightly spent a lot of energy exposing and campaigning against the oppression of LGBT people in “Christian” countries. But what happens to LGBT people in “Islamic” countries is a thousand times worse.

    1. Mainstream Christianity isn`t modernising because the denomination with the largest members is the Roman Catholic denomination and even though whilst many of their worshipers are modernising the Church itself isn`t.

      Yes correct Islam is it seems the most anti gay religion in the world I agree with you but not just regarding gay people but also with regards to the treatment of women.

      1. What about Uganda? And most of the countries in Africa? they are more Protestant than Catholic (although they have very catholic views)

  28. “MCB secretary-general Farooq Murad, said that the group had strongly opposed equal marriage, that it would seek the same ban as the Church of England”

    Er…why?? Mosques can’t marry anyone in the UK, not even straight couples, whereas the C of E can, so what on earth would be the point of exempting mosques from something they can’t do anyway??!

    The special locks were made for the C of E because they are a ‘UK marriage provider’ just like registry offices. Mosques aren’t so they don’t need the same locks. So is he just looking for an opportunity to try to say Islam is equal to the C of E, or is he desperate to get his prejudices out there too?

  29. Robert Brown 18 Dec 2012, 6:26pm

    Such a shame . . .

    Where will it end . . . exemption from serving people you don’t like?

  30. …we all must understand that the Muslin religion is very hypocritical, it hates homosexuality on one hand but most men will bugger another man if their feeling randy. Err really, what does that say?

  31. Staircase2 18 Dec 2012, 8:37pm

    See that’s exactly the problem with the stupid layer of stupid that the Tories have put in (special) place for the CofE and the CofW…

    It beggars belief that they would write into Law the idea that the CofE and CofW cannot opt in if they decide they wish to…

    No wonder other religions are up in arms over it, it’s blatantly discriminatory

  32. Staircase2 18 Dec 2012, 8:38pm

    See that’s exactly the problem with the stupid layer of stupid that the Tories have put in (special) place for the CofE and the CofW…

    It beggars belief that they would write into Law the idea that the CofE and CofW cannot opt in if they decide they wish to…

    No wonder other religions are up in arms over it, it’s blatantly discriminatory and therefore counter productive given that this is ALL ABOUT EQUALITY TO START WITH…

  33. Idiots!
    Normally they claim the government is too much interfering with them, and now while there is nothing that would force them to opt-in, they want to be blocked from opting-in…….
    They really lost their mind!

  34. From the same pr*cks that opposed the repeal of section 28.

  35. Muslims should feck off to Iran or Saudia Arabia if they want to be pandered too, otherwise shut the feck up.

  36. Posted on Haha, Sarah, you’re hilarious and I love it! Honestly, it doesn’t even mteatr that they leave my name out when all the cool kids on the internet mention me! We know who has more street cred!XOXOFelicia

  37. When are these bigots going to get it? They do not have a god given right to discriminate.
    Allowing us to marry does not equal discrimination against them.

    Why would any Gay couple want to get married in a hostile enviroment

    We should do the same as Canada. The Canadian Church (Part of the Anglican communion) Was simply told they had to marry as any refusal would be unconstitutional.

    As for the topic of the post Maria Miller should pointedly not see these people. How many times does it have to be explained to them that they do not have to opt in. No court in the UK or even the ECHR would rule against them and there is precedent and case law to back that up

  38. Zoe Bremer 1 Jul 2013, 9:41am

    Look at it this way: if yours is the only place of worship in town that is willing to conduct same-sex weddings or blessings, you’ll get more requests to host such events. Bear in mind that some places of worship host congregations of more than one denomination or even more than one religion. I can think of quite a few Quaker Meeting Houses and Unitarian Chapels that will benefit from being the providers of services unavailable at other places of worship nearby, some of which double as synogogues or mosques.

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.