Current Affairs

Comment: The equal marriage bill is not really about equality at all

Alan Craig May 27, 2013
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Writing for PinkNews, the former leader of the Christian Peoples Alliance, Alan Craig, expands on a letter he wrote to Lyn Brown MP, denying claims that he said polygamy should be included in the equal marriage bill, but claiming that same-sex marriage does not truly aim for equality.

The Pink News headline ‘Former Christian Peoples Alliance leader Alan Craig: Polygamous marriages should be included in the same-sex marriage bill’ over my open letter to Lyn Brown MP was disingenuous. It claimed that I reckon polygamous marriages should be included in the same-sex marriage Bill. That is nonsense.

I was making the key point that the Bill is not about equality, exclusion or ending discrimination against minorities. If it were, then Muslims are a larger minority than gays in the UK and there is a significantly greater demand for polygamous marriages than gay ones. If the Bill’s proponents were sincere about equality they would have included Sharia-compliant marriage in the redefinition. That they haven’t is revealing and, on their own terms, leaves them open to charges of discriminating against Muslims and even Islamophobia.

But of course the omission of Muslim marriage beautifully exposes the fact that the Bill is not really about equality at all. Rather it is an attempt by an out-of-touch political, legal and media elite to play with words, impose a new judgementalism and re-engineer society. (See Brendan O’Neill’s searing indictment of the gay marriage campaign run by ‘tiny handfuls of sharp-suited gay lobbyists, lawyers, celebrities, commentators and the Notting Hill/Hampstead sections of the political class’.

Straight marriage and gay marriage are not the same thing no matter how much or how often the government tells us otherwise. The vital difference is procreation and child-raising. For in essence and in principle normal marriage is about two people coming together, committing exclusively to each other long-term, creating children and providing a stable caring home for the nurture and healthy upbringing of the next generation. It is precisely because marriage is important for the welfare of children and for the future of society that the state must take an interest in the defining, ordering and regulation of marriage.

Conversely if children and the future are not an essential part of marriage, then neither is the state. And if now marriage is to be primarily about adults (gay and straight) just loving and choosing each other as they wish, the state logically and inevitably must back off and allow any consenting adults of any gender and any number the right to marry for as long or short as they choose. Which of course is exactly what Peter Tatchell and others want for their brave new child-free society of the future.

Conventional marriage has been the stable reproductive cornerstone of society since time immemorial and is by all measures the best means of producing healthy balanced children and responsible young citizens. If it is redefined to include something that it is not and values that are alien, it begins to corrode, implode and collapse – and the adult-centred child-unfriendly Tatchell alternative society appears rapidly over the horizon. Which of course is why he has seized the opportunity and argues strongly for same-sex marriage.

So for the sake of our children and our children’s children we should not redefine marriage at all. Rather the government should reinforce and strengthen conventional marriage and, maybe, rename the gay equivalent with a more attractive title than ‘civil partnerships’. Then it should start re-engaging with the issues of ordinary people and repairing our unrepresentative and increasingly authoritarian top-down democracy.

As with all comment pieces the views expressed do not necessary reflect those of

More: alan craig, christian peoples alliance, Civil partnerships, equal marriage, gay marriage, gay wedding, lesbian marriage, lesbian wedding, marriage, Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill, marriage equality, procreation, same sex marriage, Same-sex wedding, wedding

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