A blog by Luke Akehurst about politics, elections, and the Labour Party - With subtitles for the Hard of Left. Just for the record: all the views expressed here are entirely personal and do not necessarily represent the positions of any organisations I am a member of.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Oh dear

It has taken me 24 hours to recover from reading this in the Observer.

Ruth Kelly and Tony Blair, if the article is to be believed, want religious organisations (including state funded faith schools) to be exempt from legislation banning discrimination in the provision of goods and services to gays and lesbians.

It's not an original observation but isn't this basically saying "we'll exempt homophobes from anti-homophobia legislation (as long as they say God told them to be homophobic)". Would they also argue that misogynists should be exempt from treating women equally and racists exempt from anti-racism legislation on conscience grounds?

We have equality before the law in the UK - and that means no opt-outs for people that might have moral objections to a law.

The case studies cited by the Observer hardly justify the kerfuffle anyway - are someone's religious beliefs really going to be affronted by the (extremely theoretical) possibility that a local LGB group might ask to "hold meetings on their [faith school] premises after hours"?


Blogger Hughes Views said...

Given that state funded faith schools are allowed to discriminate on the grounds of a pupil's parents' professed religious faith, should anything about them really surprise us?

10:21 am, October 16, 2006

Anonymous Andrea said...

When Blair appointed Kelly in that position, I wondered what the hell he was thinking....after reading this Observer piece I thought "maybe he knew what he was doing and he agrees with her!".

Good for Alan Johnson to stand up and I hope backbenchers will make their voice heard too

10:27 am, October 16, 2006

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've got an idea that will start the revolution! Lets put someone at equalities that defends equality?

10:12 pm, October 16, 2006

Blogger Harry Perkins said...

A shockingly ultra-left comment from "a soft socialist" there.

Next you'll be calling for a race relations minister who seeks to defend good race relations.

8:35 am, October 17, 2006

Blogger kris said...

This really concerns me and it is the classic thin edge of the wedge. In the clash of rights, who will have to compromise? Religion (Islam specifically) will always trump women, gays and lesbians? Wait for it.

8:55 am, October 17, 2006

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry I won't hear a bad word said about Phil Woolas!

2:05 pm, October 17, 2006


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