Published on: 04/02/2013 08:49 AMReported by: roving-eye
A large number of you have written to me in recent weeks about the Government's proposals on gay marriage and asked me what my view is.
I have had to think long and hard and honestly about this to the best of my ability. Apologies for any delay and thank you all for your input whatever your view.So many of you have written that it is impossible for me to respond to every point everyone has made.
I cannot be certain that I have reached the right conclusions but you will see from what follows that I have tried to be as fair to the various arguments as I can. Do let me know if you can identify any errors in my reasoning as I want to get things as right as I can and avoid prejudice and misunderstanding.
I cannot claim to be an expert on all the issues of sexual morality and legislation though I strongly suspect that the values and principles we apply to our general behaviour and relationships apply in much the same way when we come to sexual behaviour.
As a married, heterosexual father of four, I cannot be said to be free from bias or limitations of perspective and as both a Roman Catholic and Liberal Democrat I obviously bring some baggage with me.
I want to say right at the start that I do not believe I am homophobic and am comfortable with Civil Partnerships legislation and the protection that offers to those in long-standing gay relationships. I have polled many of you by e-mail and the most widespread view in my constituency is support for civil partnerships but not for gay marriage.
I thought at the start that as I struggled over this issue, I would arrive at a position that would antagonise either my church which is solidly (though not exclusively) AGAINST or my party which is solidly (though not exclusively) FOR.
As I put my own ideas in order I realise that I stand a fair chance of antagonising BOTH my church and my party.
It remains to be seen which is the most forgiving/understanding
I will vote against the Bill - against Gay Marriage but not necessarily for all the reasons the churches give but because I think there is a good liberal case against the current legislation.
I was surprised in agonising over this how little I relied on any distinctively religious beliefs to arrive at my conclusion. I think there is a liberal case against the Bill and though it may start from a different point than church or religious teaching, it seems to arrive on the same page and embody similar insights.
My fundamental objection (see below) against the government's proposal is that it achieves none of its objectives and weakens the link between marriage and the family.
As a result it draws government (the state) into a whole, new series of debatable judgements and rulings on sexual, personal and religious behaviour.
Far from being permissive in effect, it could herald the advent of ever more arbitrary prescription as we forget why the state legislates at all in this deeply personal aspect of life.
The full case for my position is rather long and I suspect few will want such a long justification but it does at least demonstrate how seriously I take this issue and how long I have thought about it and the words I choose.
Recognising this I have provided a summary of my argument and those who disagree with what I say there can find a fuller explanation in the bigger document.
John Pugh MP
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Your baggage is clearly what has formed your view. Sadly, you are not recognising the changes in our world. Remember that the bible was a refllection of a different era and now we need to reflect our better education and understanding of how life works. I would urge you to rethink and consider your constiuents views rather than your own!
I thought the whole idea of marriage was a union of a man and a woman. Send all these
"Gay" folk to a island somewhere and as time goes by there will be none left. Or perhaps they will realise that we need to have sex between men and women too keep the birth rate up.
I am fed up of all these GAYS banging on about their rights.
I think that in a decade or so you will look back with embarassment at your decision. It is rare that a move to a more liberal and equal society is ever viewed badly in hindsight.
John Pugh has just gone up in my estimation.
Oh dear! I'm sorry but what planet do you live on? Being gay is genetic just as having blue or brown eyes is. Lets send all those with Brown eyes to an island then there will be none left. What would you do if you had a gay son or daughter? Send them to an island?
Originally Posted by sea-salted
Pathetic! Try clicking on these links - don't suppose you will though, you just stay in your insular bigoted world cos it doesn't fit with you ideals of family life!
"Some people are Gay - Get over it"
John Pugh has just gone down (fnarr fnarr) in my estimation
You say you are not homophobic but post something about gay marriage!!
The bill is for equal marriage... not gay marriage
You do not have to be straight to enter a marriage....you also do not have to be gay to enter a civil partnership.
You clearly have your own agenda here. It is your turn to vote tomorrow. Soon it will be our turn to vote.I for one will not be voting for you ever again. I hope that everyone else can see that you are out of touch with the modern world.
I too think you will live to regret your vote. This is about equality, what example are you setting for the next generation or all the younger people who are terrified to tell their family that they are different.
And for everyone who will turn this into a gay bash!
Think about who you hate as one day it maybe someone you love.
I'm not sure what you mean by that. You certainly have to of the same sex to enter into a civil partnership, i.e. a man and a woman cannot enter into a civil partnership.
Originally Posted by jj_1970
What I am saying is.... This is an equalitly issue not a gay issue
You do have to be same sex for civil partnerships .... you do not have to be gay....it just helps!
So.... equal marriage act..... not gay marriage.
Let everyone marry.....let everyone have a CP.
People say the state should not interfere with marriage. Yet it does .... eg: couple married for 30 years then one decides to correct their gender....they must divorce !!
We now reconise gender reassignment.... great....but other laws are out of date.
Now is the time to sort equality out....
Equality for ALL
He will be less homophobic come election time!!!!. A complete waste of space.
Better idea, send all these narrow minded biggots to a desserted island and let the rest of us get on with our lives without those that thrive on stirring up hate.
SOME PEOPLE ARE GAY, GET OVER IT!
Originally Posted by sea-salted
Well, you may not be homophobic but you are against equal rights...You are not setting the best example to future generations are you?? Well I too am now no longer going to be voting for you and neither will another lot of people I know of.
Let's play along
Originally Posted by sea-salted
Sad little person. You don't have any understanding of equal rights do you! Marriage is about bringing two people together that LOVE each other! So why should it be limited to just men and women? And for the religious nuts out there, a line from the bible: "What God has joined together let no man put asunder" Gods will is for 2 people to be happily married so don't try to destroy what God has made...
Originally Posted by sea-salted
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