Thursday, July 10, 2008

HFE Bill postponed 'to avoid offending Catholics’?

It appears that Ruth Kelly arranged her Brussels escape route in vain, for Labour has announced an amendment to next week's parliamentary business.

There was due to be a debate and vote on the remaining stages of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill, and Mrs Kelly had been given permission by the Prime Minister to attend to very urgent business in Brussels. But Harriet Harman has now rescheduled the Second Reading of the Employment Bill, and kicked the HFE Bill into the long grass – the autumn.

Ms Harman said: ‘It remains a flagship bill, but in the last full week before the House rises, difficult decisions have to be taken.’

Indeed, and the Shadow Leader of the House, Theresa May, has conjectured that the delay may have something to do with the manifest inconvenience of debating abortion, saviour siblings, animal/human hybrids and other contentious ethical matters during the run-up to the Glasgow East by-election, where there is a sizeable Roman Catholic community.

Although Cranmer thinks Mrs May may have a point, he also thinks she is partially wrong and guilty of a little prejudice.

Roman Catholics no longer vote Labour because they are Roman Catholic; they vote Labour because they do not believe the Conservative Party represents their concerns. Those Roman Catholics who voted Labour in Glasgow at the last general election did so more because of Labour’s perceived privileging of the poor (ie because they live in Glasgow East). But Labour has not only ceased being concerned with their economic isolation; it has spent recent years subsuming their moral concerns to minority pressure groups, and legislating against the plethora of ‘pro-life’ issues that the majority of Roman Catholics hold dear. As Cranmer has said, all Christians should think thrice before voting Labour.

Since Roman Catholics are busy accommodating those who are presently defecting from the Church of England, in a perfectly reasonable quid pro quo, Cranmer urges the Roman Catholics of Glasgow East to defect to the Conservative Party. It is no longer the political wing of the Church of England, so there is nothing to fear, and those who dare to cross will not be asked to remain celibate or to believe that David Cameron is infallible.

And Cranmer is looking forward enormously to seeing what urgent and unavoidable business arises for Mrs Kelly in the autumn.

6 Comments:

Blogger SACKERSON said...

I wonder whether embryo-meddling and testing is much to do with any likely future health benefit (more likely to increase demand for abortion, I suspect). It has the feel of taboo-breaking for its own sake, a Promethean ambitio. It feels like a symbolic destruction of all humanity. There's an amazing essay by Lewis Carroll on vivisection, in which he foresaw that it would lead to similar abominations practised on humans, which came to pass in Europe and Manchuria in WW2. Is there a program, a progressive policy, of dehumanization?

10 July 2008 at 21:18  
Anonymous hear o israel said...

dont think this one has got under the wire your grace !!

already being blogged in scotland bad move for labour i think

10 July 2008 at 21:21  
Blogger ultramontane grumpy old catholic said...

"Those who dare to cross (i.e.defect to the Conservative party) will not be asked to remain celibate or to believe that David Cameron is infallible"

Your Grace, this implies that these are now tenets of the Conservative party and that Scottish voters will be allowed a derogation. Gosh, I didn't know that...

But taking up Your Grace's point, (with which I agree) is that in the cities over the past 50 years, there has been an increasing drift away from Tory, and this was before Mrs Thatcher. And Catholics have tended to be from the cities.

The last Tory leader to gather significant votes in places like Liverpool (where I come from) was Harold Macmillan in 1959. But when you think of the character of supermac, there has been nobody to touch him since, in terms of being able to reach out to people of all types. Even Mrs Thatcher, by far the most successful Prime Minister since WW2 and a godsend to this country, had not got that gift.

11 July 2008 at 08:19  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're quite right, Archie: the Church is a mess and the country is in a state. God knows what a state we're in.

16 July 2008 at 17:33  
Anonymous Tim said...

Good Job! :)

19 August 2008 at 12:14  
Blogger sexy said...

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14 January 2009 at 07:31  

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