Tim Farron compared sexuality to slavery while defending being a Christian politician
Former Liberal Democrats leader Tim Farron suggested that being anti-gay is the modern equivalent of being anti-slavery in a conversation about how Christianity “has always been counter-cultural”.
Farron is an evangelical Christian whose views on LGBT+ issues have frequently landed him in hot water.
He has been repeatedly probed about his beliefs on gay sex after he refused to say whether he believed it was sinful.
In 2017, he attempted to salvage his reputation by telling a BBC interviewer that he did not believe gay sex to be a sin, but later changed his answer and admitted he “regretted” misleading the public on this.
Farron has now written an autobiography about being both a Christian and a liberal politician. Speaking to The Times ahead of its publication, he said he was “deeply traumatised” by his portrayal as a “religious nutter” in the press.
He further explained his stance on gay sex using a bizarre comparison with slavery, which suggests that the Church’s non-conformist position on both issues demonstrates that Christianity has always been “counter-cultural”.
Once upon a time a Christian teaching jarred with the culture on slavery. Today it is sexuality. In a hundred years time it will be something else
He said: “If you are a Christian you should be a decent, good-mannered citizen, but you should never feel at home… Once upon a time a Christian teaching jarred with the culture on slavery. Today it is sexuality. In a hundred years time it will be something else.”
By drawing parallels between the two, Farron appears to suggest that in time public opinion will move away from defending LGBT+ rights, just as it did with slavery.
He also ignores the fact that Christian teachings were widely used to justify slavery, with only a minority of Christians protesting it at the time.
The insensitive comment was blasted by people on Twitter, who see it as further evidence that the former Liberal Democrats leader’s views are actually far from liberal.
Where does one start with this comment from @timfarron?
Let’s start with slavery being another plane of morality from being gay
Let’s finish with remembering how many Christian institutions were complicit in slavery pic.twitter.com/mTTano4MJO
— Benali Hamdache (@greenbenali) September 9, 2019
think tim farron continuing to spout this shit about sexuality goes to show that politics is about more than just a voting record. a prominent politician voting for gay marriage doesn’t really matter if he talks about believing gay sex is a sin https://t.co/qnYSTFIwwR
— adam 2: the island of lost dreams (@SPYKlDS2) September 9, 2019
He’s not wrong in saying he ‘doesn’t believe that the media has treated him unfairly’ – If this was a non-white MP who followed any other faith, you can bet this interview would hit front page headlines.
— Socialist Ghost ? (@SocialistGhost) September 9, 2019
Milky Tim has had a good long think while cradling his organic two pinter and reckons opposing gay rights is a little like Christians feeling a bit uncomfortable with the slavery trade the CoE invested in. https://t.co/AhEcvw7tJT
— Copacetic Diabetic (@OldManCrescenzi) September 9, 2019
tell you one thing if the lib dems had existed back then there’s absolutely no way they’d have vocally opposed slavery
— old man bangers (@FindusPancake) September 9, 2019
LGBT+ Lib Dems quit party over ‘homophobic’ Phillip Lee.
Last week the Lib Dems were accused of discarding their commitment to LGBT+ rights by allowing the ‘homophobic’ ex-Tory Phillip Lee to join the party against the wishes of several LGBT+ members.
Members stepped down in protest, including the chair of the Lib Dem LGBT+ group, Jennie Rigg, and Cambridge city councillor, Sarah Brown.
Brown explained her decision on Facebook: “Our MPs are willing to burn their own LGBT+ section to the ground for a publicity stunt that’s already fading from the news cycle.”
The party leader Jo Swinson defended the decision to admit Lee to the party, saying: “Phillip brings almost 10 years of parliamentary experience and decades of professional expertise. He shares our commitment to prevent a disastrous no-deal Brexit, and to stop Brexit altogether.”
PinkNews has contacted Tim Farron for comment.