Comments: New clauses and amendments to Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill

Tony Baldry responds to a question by Anne McIntosh, saying: "I think it is important to remember that in Scotland, where [celebrant-based weddings] happen[s], pagan weddings and weddings in other formats are now taking place, which I am not sure we would necessarily want to see in England."

Is he seriously proposing that the Church of England would like to prohibit people from being married according to their religious beliefs if the CofE does not approve of those beliefs? Are there still representatives of the Church of England who would ban faiths and ceremonies of which they don't approve?

I am absolutely stunned to see this. How is it possible for someone to say this sort of thing and still be taken seriously in a modern civilized nation? Is his parliamentary constituency somewhere in Tehran?

Would someone in England please address this? (obviously humanist and pagan weddings don't seem to scare the Scots.) Am I being too American when I find this to be beyond the pale? Is there really no fall-out for a politician seeking to impose religious repression in England?

Posted by Dennis in Chicago at Saturday, 18 May 2013 at 7:48pm BST

I am delighted to see that when the C of E authorities decide to opt in to marriage equality, it will be able to be fast tracked !

Not at all bad, Maria Miller !

Posted by Laurence at Saturday, 18 May 2013 at 7:59pm BST

Dennis, it sounds a bit like Lord Hardwicke redivivus...

Posted by Tobias Haller at Saturday, 18 May 2013 at 11:26pm BST

Dennis, you're right. It shows a deep, reflexive intolerance of anything that seems a little bit different.

One can guess that this is the real reason for his views on same-sex marriage as well.

Posted by Christopher at Monday, 20 May 2013 at 2:23am BST

I am sorry to see that Maria Miller is now saying, that the Marraige Equality Bill is in doubt; and may faiul due to the Tm Lawton (?) amendment allowing straights to enter CPs.
(Cf Pink News & Facebook)

It sounds good in theory but is meant as a wrecking amendment. So without sincerity.

It is up to Labour to prevent the loss of the Bill.

But is this a Tory tactic ? A MM bluff to ward him and David Burrowes off ?

Posted by Laurence at Monday, 20 May 2013 at 1:34pm BST

Dear Laurence,

The _Independent_ article that you cite says

'Once canon law was changed, all that would be required [for the CofE to opt in to same sex marriage] would be a vote in the Commons and Lords'

which I presume means that, once General Synod or some other competent institution had passed an amending canon to allow same-sex CofE marriages, the Henry VIII clause in section 15(2) of the bill would be used to do the necessary tidying up of primary legislation. I personally rather like that idea, but I suspect that almost no-one else on this forum, and almost no-one in any house of General Synod, will be happy with it.

Posted by Feria at Saturday, 25 May 2013 at 8:41pm BST
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