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Philip Hammond admits to raising sibling relationships in same-sex marriage discussion

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  1. That There Other David 31 Jan 2013, 1:11pm

    Where siblings have pooled resources in old age that should be taken into account when it comes to inheritance. That it currently is not is downright wrong and the government should aim to correct the tax laws and ensure siblings are not penalised in such situations.

    However, what the hell has that got to do with the current marriage debate? Marriage is much more than just inheritance laws Mr. Hammond.

    1. GulliverUK 31 Jan 2013, 1:25pm

      It’s an entirely different issue to Civil Partnerships or Marriage, and the reason being that two siblings don’t generally have “romantic and sexual attraction”, which is what marriages/Civil Partnerships are for.

      Two people who are unrelated have no valid claims for inheritance, whilst sisters and brothers already so in law, so they don’t need to be included in any marriage or Civil Partnership law. Two men, two women, or a man and women, unrelated, with no romantic and sexual feelings towards each other, would also not be eligible for any special tax treatment, they’re simply living together because they want to, perhaps to share costs, as many of us will have done at some point.

      Society recognises romantic and sexual attraction relationships because they bring greater stability to the two people involved, and thus greater stability to society as a whole – recognising them is simply encouragement to keep them, but those relationships exist in those that cohabit also.

      1. GulliverUK 31 Jan 2013, 1:30pm

        ALSO, I bet he was one of those MPs who tried to add an amendment to the Civil Partnerships bill to include siblings — which was designed to scupper the bill completely, and is his intention here, and I would not be surprised if they try again to add siblings to the marriage bill, to try to scupper it.

        Hammond of also as thick as it gets. Last week he told the house of commons that Mali was a Christian country — was a totally tit — it’s 90% Muslim, 10% Christian, He’s also a liar, denying he’d made the comparison, when he’s now admitted he did mention siblings.

        If I was PM he would have gone last week, now he’s staying and hasn’t apologised, just told the whole world THEY are wrong for assuming his reference to “sibling” was anything to do with incest. He really is a sack of &&&&. :(

        1. I bet he was too. I remember all that cr@p about siblings in the CP debate. It really annoys me. No-one mentions siblings when a man and a woman get married; no-one says “That’s not fair because what about a brother and sister? Why shouldn’t THEY be allowed to benefit from marriage?”

          No – siblings only become a concern, it seems, when same sex couples try to marry.

  2. Of course he did. And invoking the slippery slope fallacy was a dog whistle to bigotry, or an act of complete and utter incompetence.

    Hard to tell the difference with Tories.

  3. Ed Stevens 31 Jan 2013, 1:30pm

    He represents the unacceptable face of the Tory party and has no place in cabinet. Get rid of the bigot now.

  4. Robert in S. Kensington 31 Jan 2013, 1:42pm

    “He said, ‘Well we don’t allow siblings to get married either’.

    Why on earth did he think that admissiont was relevant to equal marriage? Does he really think it wouldn’t be misinterpreted? He’s a liar and knew damned well what it would imply short of saying ‘incest’. Not only a liar, but a sanctimonious bigot who shouldn’t even be in government.

    I don’t care what people believe in, just don’t bring religion into the workplace which is what is at the core of his irresponsible statement. His religious beliefs and they most certainly are religious have absolutely NO place in government policy or legislation.

  5. I diagree with you there That There Other David.

    Unmarried siblings HAVE had the opportunity – they just didn’t take it.

    The fact they decide not to and ended up living with their sibling was THEIR choice!!

    On the other hand- gay partners CANNOT get married and also gay partners are not conserving money “within the family”- and avoiding capital gains tax.

  6. These old Tory bigots are SO brainwashed by religion to believe that ‘gay is bad’, that they are simply unable to move beyond that mindset. Look, I find smarmy, private school-educated fops difficult to stomach but I’m prepared to allow you equality without constantly making abusive and hate-filled comments. Just get this in your head: some people are gay and some people are frightened of BEING gay (homophobes). We’re not frightened of closet gays. You shouldn’t be frightened of OUT gays. Now can we all just please move on ….?

  7. I don’t think he is really getting at the idea of elderly spinster sisters using marriage to cement inheritance rights – he is baiting you to say ‘well incest is nasty’, at which point you’ve conceded his point: that some relationships are morally unworthy of legal recognition – you and he just draw the cut-off line in different places. Don’t rise to it.

    1. Yes, incest is often mentioned by anti-gay trolls here in the same way – along with polygamy, of course, as part of their silly slippery slope arguments.

  8. So when is the prawn going to resign? I think it’s wonderful that David Cameron must be coming to the conclusion that his cohorts are nothing but a bunch of self-seeking egoists!

  9. I’m not surprised by his admission. He’s clearly a homophobe. He doesn’t have one single sensible argument to put forward against equal marriage, so he falls back on the idiotic ‘reasons’ dug up by previous bigots.

    The sibling argument is always presented as two eledrly sisters living together, and why shouldn’t THEY be permitted to marry if we let two people of the same sex marry? But the half-wits fail to think past their bigotry else they’d realise that their argument could just as equally be used against opposite sex marriage.

    Siblings can be a brother and sister too, not just the proverbial ‘two devoted elderly sisters’ argument.

    None of these people seem to stop and think. They just parrot cr@p they’ve heard.

  10. Robert (Kettering) 31 Jan 2013, 4:26pm

    He’s just one of those Public School educated, Tory Twits we so often see. You know the sort a life of privilege with little between the ears. I thought they were a dying breed but looking at this idiot clearly not it seems.

  11. Robert in S. Kensington 31 Jan 2013, 4:27pm

    If there is a demand for incest and polygamy and a cause to legitimise both because of equal marriage, then it is incumbent on Hammond and his band of religious hate-mongers to come forward with the evidence. There are eleven equal marriage countries, surely wouldn’t they find it an easy job to produce evidence? I don’t know of any western government wishing to legislate for either.

    Now he could of course admit that some islamic countries permit hetero polygamy, up to four wives at a time, but there is no equal marriage in that part of the world, none. So what would he then attribute that too I wonder? Oh yes, the old testament on which the Quran is based, biblical marriage no less, something that he and all those religious right wingers should be supporting and if not, why do they not condemn it since they keep saying that marriage between one man and one woman is universal. NOT!

  12. I just don’t know what to say about people like him with those views. Is it homophobia? I think it’s more just sheer bloody ignorance. At which point do we really want someone so ignorant in government and in charge of defense?

    All that bringing incest, polygamy and pedophilia into the debate does is show how out of touch these idiots are, and that they really shouldn’t be playing any part in the debate and decision making.

  13. “I could see how someone who wanted to misinterpret it could misinterpret it”.

    Oh, the crafty, slimy, clever, little homophobe.

    Did the Radio 5 Live presenter not ask: “But, Mr. Hammond, you have voted against every piece of legislation in favour of gay rights over the last 15 years or so, so don’t you think it’s entirely reasonable for everyone to assume that you WERE comparing homosexual people to people involving themselves in incestuous relationship?”

    That would have stumped the bugger . . . a bit. At least.

  14. He’s a nasty, arrogant old Tory buffer. Get rid of him, Dave.

  15. A few years from now he’ll act as if he was always a champion of marriage equality and everyone will shrug their shoulders and not rightfully call him a liar.

    Bigots manage to do this all the time. Though I’m all for bigots turning from their bigotry I’m not for giving them a free pass.

  16. I have received a pathetic and useless email this morning from the office of Conservative Chairman, Grant Shapps MP stating:

    ‘I hope you don’t mind if I take this opportunity to clarify Mr Hammond’s remarks, I understand that the context in which Mr Hammond made his comments was in a wide ranging discussion about the state and the state’s involvement in people’s relationships and day to day lives and talking about the tax advantages that are available through marriage and civil partnership. Mr Hammond has said that any alleged comparison between homosexuality and incest was “a completely scurrilous interpretation.” ‘

    I have written back saying that when one considers that throughout Mr. Hammond’s time in parliament he has consistently voted AGAINST every single piece of legislation designed to grant equality towards homosexual people it becomes absolutely reasonable to dispute, if not reject, his retort that the interpretation of his remarks has been “completely scurrilous”.

  17. The comparison of same-sex relationships with incest comes up a lot amongst homophobes. I’m interested in why this may be the case.

    Now, my knowledge of social anthropology is scanty, but I have at least read Gayle Rubin’s seminal essay, “The Traffic in Women”, based on primitive societies. In it, she posits that women are used as conduits for homosocial relationships between men. If you marry a woman from another tribe, then you get her brothers to go hunting with, dowries and so forth. If you marry your sister, you don’t. People today assume that the incest taboo is about genetics, but primitive societies had no understanding of genetics – it was about how it affects the social structure.

    Similarly, same-sex marriage also disrupts the traffic in women. Perhaps this is why the rather ambiguous prohibition against sex between men in Leviticus (which could also be a prohibition against raping men, or male-male adultery) is in the same section as the incest prohibitions.

    1. Fascinating reflections, Sophie! Thanks.

      1. You’re welcome! I had great fun using that essay when analysing some of the homoerotic relationships in Shakespeare for a uni essay.

        Of course, anyone following that sort of antiquated line of thinking is likely to be “traditional” to the point of extreme misogyny as well. It seems to be about viewing society as a big block, based on smaller blocks of a mixed-sex couple with its children (born “naturally”, because they’re painting with such broad brushstrokes that couples who need assisted reproduction, or who don’t want children, get painted out), but doing so in a very regimented way that ignores the nature of the individual relationships involved. They’re usually anti-divorce too. Which is parrticularly ironic, because the leading cause of divorce is domestic abuse, something which you can’t exactly pretend just happens to a tiny minority. Talk about cherry-picking your info.

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