Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Iris Robinson – anti-gay or pro-God?

And here's to you, Mrs. Robinson,
Jesus loves you more than you will know.
God bless you, please Mrs. Robinson.
Heaven holds a place for those who pray,
Hey, hey, hey.


And Iris Robinson MP MLA is doubtless praying rather a lot at the moment. She is the wife of the First Minister of Northern Ireland, Peter Robinson MP MLA. Not that she should be defined merely or even primarily as being his spouse, but one can but wonder at the conversations over their breakfast table. Mrs Robinson's views on homosexual behaviour (please note that it is the behaviour) is that it is repulsive, wrong and immoral. She has never made a secret of her opinion on the matter, and yet still she wins her seats at Westminster and Stormont. The majority of her constituents either do not care about her beliefs, do not know of them, or endorse them. Whichever, her views - however unpalatable her views may be, and however repugnant one may find her - are shared by a great many British people.

She has recently expounded her views further in a parliamentary meeting, during which she said:

“There can be no viler act, apart from homosexuality and sodomy, than sexually abusing innocent children. There must be sufficient confidence that the community has the best possible protection against such perverts, and it is important that there be a mature public debate on the issues, but the security of our citizens must be our overriding priority.”

When asked to clarify her meaning, she did so in no uncertain terms, saying:

“I cannot think of anything more sickening than a child being abused. It is comparable to the act of homosexuality. I think they are all comparable. I feel totally repulsed by both.”

This has exercised Mr Iain Dale somewhat, to the extent that he thinks she needs to see a psychiatrist to be cured of her ‘bigoted, ill judged claptrap’. He accuses her of reinforcing ‘existing prejudices among certain people who then feel expressing them in a violent way is somehow acceptable and can be defended because of the "scriptures".’

She has, of course, done no such thing, and, having lived through decades of sectarian violence and murder, she would be repulsed by the accusation that her appeal to Scripture somehow renders violence acceptable.

Mrs Robinson has not helped her cause by juxtaposing homosexuality with paedophilia. The one is, after all, legal in the UK between consenting adults; the other manifestly illegal and predatory. But one gets the feeling that she made an off-the-cuff comment based on her personal feelings rather than asserting a moral or legal equivalence. And this is how many may react to the issue, not least because there is presently a feeling or perception of being overrun by a militant ‘gay lobby’ which is intent on forcing its agenda down the throats of every heterosexual and undermining the view of the traditional family.

Christians, Jews and Muslims all have scriptures which incline them do view homosexuality with distaste. Yes, of course these are open to interpretation, and one should always be cognisant of the science of hermeneutics and the art of the sitz im leben, but people with a faith have every right to state their opinion on homosexuality and on everything else, however this may jar with the zeitgeist, and however this may offend the politically-correct imperative to ‘celebrate diversity'.

Essentially, Mrs Robinson believes it is the role of government to implement God’s Law. She says: ‘The United Kingdom is a country that has been shaped by our long and proud tradition of Christianity. It may no longer be fashionable to say such things and some people for their own petty reasons may attack me for saying so, but I believe that legislation passed in this country should take cognisance of and reflect the traditions and beliefs which made us the society which we are today.’

And on this, Mrs Robinson, an Ulster Protestant, has found favour with the leader of Ireland's Roman Catholics. Cardinal Sean Brady said that, although the precise details of the claim would need to be explored, the role of government is always to work for the common good of its people. He was therefore in general agreement with the MP's claim that human governments are divinely instituted, and that they ought to act justly on the basis of God's law. When the civil law opposes God’s law, the Roman Catholic Church is in no doubt about the Christian’s right to demur:

Times to Refuse Obedience (Catholic Catechism 2242):
Citizens must refuse to obey directions of civil authorities which are against the moral order, the fundamental rights of persons or the Gospel teachings. By refusing obedience, the person correctly serves God and not the political community. A distinction exists between what "is rendered to Caesar" and what "is rendered to God" (Mt 22:21). "We must obey God rather than men" (Acts 5:29).


While there are many in this militantly secularist age who would rather governments were silent on God’s law, they fail to understand the very foundations of those concepts of equality, liberty and justice which are necessary and intrinsic to enlightened and civilised society.

The think-tank Theos advocates that:

"...the specific actions the church should take depend on the nature of the state - that the closer its moral orientation is to the gospel, the greater the capacity for cooperation. The church therefore has the obligation to closely examine the moral orientation of the state, how its policies and actions contribute to the public good, not religious belief; and measure them against the church’s conception of the public good that underlies its public witness."

It is therefore a question of 'navigating between theocracy on the one hand and a privatized faith in a secular society on the other’.

And should one get this wrong, one risks rolling back the progress of the last three centuries, and Cranmer is in no doubt which theocracy is presently waiting to assert its own concepts of justice, liberty, equality and conception of the public good. And when it does, people will be longing for the good old days, and singing 'God bless you, please Mrs Robinson'.

33 Comments:

Blogger Unsworth said...

Your Grace

"she would be repulsed by the accusation that her appeal to Scripture somehow renders violence acceptable."

Really? Is this opinion, or do you have some factual basis? Clearly this lady has thought through the likely consequences of voicing her interesting personal views.

"Mrs Robinson believes it is the role of government to implement God’s Law."

Would she, therefore and in your view, support a Theocracy? Then we might also get into a debate over the definition of 'God's Law'...

22 July 2008 at 09:20  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Unsworth,

Cranmer has no foreknowledge that Mrs Robinson would support the establishment of a theocracy, but rather is inclined to believe that her Ulster Protestantism renders her broadly supportive of the Elizabthan Settlement with the consequent adjustments which ensure that no governmental entity may assert a theological absolutism.

The debate over 'God's Law' is, of course, wholly relevant, and His Grace makes that very point.

22 July 2008 at 09:35  
Anonymous Andrew Lilico said...

It is perfectly fine for Mrs Robinson to disapprove of homosexual behaviour - indeed, doing so is clearly mandated by the Scriptures. But what disappoints me is
(a) the thought that there is any relevance to what "repulses" her. I am repulsed by all kinds of things - for example, the sight of someone eating black eggs - but I don't take my own feelings to be any interesting indicator of what is truly right and wrong.
(b) her infantile equating of homosexuality and paedophilia. This kind of foolishness undermines the serious efforts Christians go to to put forward their case for the virtues of lifelong coventant partnership between one man and one woman. I am a believer in marriage. I have no wish to have the belief in marriage tainted by association with people who have personal hang-ups about what does or does not repulse them, or who cannot see the difference between perhaps-loving but certainly misguided same-sexual encounter and the predation upon children by paedophiles.

22 July 2008 at 09:45  
Anonymous Jonny Mac said...

I can't really see what homosexuality has to do with Christ's message. He didn't have anything to say on the subject, so far as I know. For Christians, it seems to me that the reference to "the Scriptures" is in fact a handy red herring for those unpleasant people like Ms Robinson who want to share their personal feelings about other people's sexuality. I'm deeply disappointed to find you in her company, your Grace; it seems unworthy of you.

22 July 2008 at 10:05  
Blogger Cranmer said...

Mr Jonny Mac,

Would you please highlight that section of His Grace's writing which places His Grace in Mrs Robinson's company, and what precisely you mean by 'her company'.

Did not the Lord dine with prostitutes and tax collectors? And what were the accusations against him?

22 July 2008 at 10:14  
Blogger mongoose said...

>>“There can be no viler act, apart from homosexuality and sodomy, than sexually abusing innocent children..."

Surely she meant to say "There can be no viler act than (sexually) abusing (innocent)children."

22 July 2008 at 10:50  
Blogger Manfarang said...

Theocracy?
The Church of Ireland was disestablished!

22 July 2008 at 10:58  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To give some perspective, Mrs. Robinson penned this article for the Belfast News Letter regarding religion and politics. It was printed on Saturday.


"The influence of individuals drawn from the Christian tradition has helped to make the United Kingdom a liberal, progressive and democratic society. All down through our history, the brave and courageous actions of people who were motivated by their Christian faith have had far reaching political consequences. William Wilberforce, a committed evangelical Christian led the parliamentary campaign to have slavery outlawed within the British Empire. He was also a founder member of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Convinced of the injustice of slavery, Wilberforce, at first reviled and maligned for his anti-slavery stance oversaw the passage of the Slave Trade Act in 1807 and died three days after the passage of the Slavery Abolition Act in 1833 which ended the practice forever in British-controlled realms.

More recently the roots of the Trades Unions, which fought for basic rights and against injustices at the turn of the last century run deep into the non-conformist churches and the Salvation Army movement, from which the Unions took the tradition of marching brass bands. In a historical context, it is beyond dispute that many of the pieces of legislation which were designed to end injustice or improve people’s lives for the better were pioneered by Parliamentarians with firm Christian beliefs. The United Kingdom is a country steeped in the Christian tradition: not only does the vast bulk of our law reflect this reality it is also reflected in the continued influence which Christian leaders have over the legislative process. Parliament contains 26 Lords Spiritual who are Bishops and Archbishops of the Church of England who bring their Christian perspective to bear on legislation when it reaches the Upper House. There are in both houses, people with firm Christian beliefs in all parties and their beliefs provide an extra dimension to their consideration of legislation.

Recent legislation brought before the Commons has caused severe difficulty for people from both the reformed and non-reformed traditions. The refusal of Ruth Kelly and Des Browne to back certain parts of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill because it conflicted with their Roman Catholic beliefs showed that at times legislation is devised which people, even at the highest levels of government, in all conscience simply cannot support even when their party wants them to. I think politicians who take such stands are deserving of respect. There views may not sometimes be popular, but they are acting in accordance with their consciences.

Not only in Parliament but outside it also, is the positive influence of those from the Christian tradition strongly felt. Here in Northern Ireland, some of the most dedicated, committed and capable school governors are provided via the churches. That is why the DUP opposes the plans of Caitriona Ruane to effectively exclude the Transferors Representatives Council from continuing to nominate people to Boards of Governors of our primary and post-primary schools.

The United Kingdom is a country that has been shaped by our long and proud tradition of Christianity. It may no longer be fashionable to say such things and some people for their own petty reasons may attack me for saying so, but I believe that legislation passed in this country should take cognisance of and reflect the traditions and beliefs which made us the society which we are today."

22 July 2008 at 11:34  
Anonymous Jonny Mac said...

I should perhaps have phrased my comment better - the danger of commenting in snatched moments at work. I meant that on my reading, the tenor of your piece was, to my mind, overly defensive of Mrs Robinson. I see now that its primary thrust is a different and quite subtle point, and I apologise if I misrepresented your position. Nevertheless, I remain of the view that comments such as hers are wholly antithetical to the Christian message, and I remain unsure if you share that view.

22 July 2008 at 12:00  
Blogger ultramontane grumpy old catholic said...

Your Grace

Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear!

Mrs Robinson has offended one of the three most powerful pressure groups in the UK today (the other two being the mullahs and the greens). She risks being sent to the Rocco Buttiglione Memorial Home for social and political re-education.

She can also kiss goodbye to any future appointment on the euro-gravytrain.

What's the betting that she will suddenly be subject to "investigations into possible irregularities in expenses, possible omittion of declarations of interest etc, etc".

22 July 2008 at 12:00  
Anonymous hear o israel said...

your grace
i was rather shocked at ian dales response , i mean why cannot one hold an opinion different to his ??

indeed this set me on a much larger question , of why cant male gay love be termed buggery without any offence , and more importantly why ",ust" i believe that mr dale is right , is he not being a biggot ??

your grace is right to point that jesus dined with tax collectors and protestitutes , the slvation is avaiable for everyone , but only if your sins can be forgiven.

most bits of the scripture refereing to "men being lovers of men " speak of this as being a time of chaos when people will not follow the word of god , which to me in a sort of QED way suggests that if you commit homosexual acts that you are not following god .

quite if you can have it both ways , so to speak , is very doubtfull and certainly not in the bible !!

22 July 2008 at 12:24  
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22 July 2008 at 12:47  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a Christian homosexual I am deeply hurt by being put on a level with paedophiles. There are an obvious number of differences, such as:

1) in homosexual relationships, two adults CONSENT - there are no innocent naive victims forced to suffer

2) homosexual relationships are about two people who love each other - as long as homosexuals remain a minority I don't see why people are so disturbed by it? If they were born gay, how would they feel about being told that, if they ever act upon their feelings or desires, they are as disgusting as paedophiles?

And I speak as a Christian who believes that implementing Christian laws has much value and would lead to a better society.

I just don't believe that the Bible can be used to condemn homosexuality because of the context of the alleged references; neither do I believe that homosexuality is a choice or that God is cruel enough to make somebody a certain way then tell them that they are evil for acting upon it.

Rather than homosexuality, it is such ignorance, coldness and hardness towards homosexuals in this day and age that I, personally, find truly disgusting.

22 July 2008 at 18:15  
Blogger mckenzie said...

Men can love men. I love my Father, my Brothers. But it's when men start getting jiggy with each other and forcing this down my neck as being quite normal, which get on my tits.
I cannot move forward into their way of thinking, beyond the notion that the male anus was not intended for anything other than having a dump.
I once saw a porn movie when I was in the forces, which I should not have bothered with but it was a peer thing at the time, which showed people crapping into each other's mouths. If any of them considered themselves to be Christians, I wonder if they would describe themselves as Christian eaters of shit?
I really do apologise for the disgusting and crude language, but I have to agree fully with Mrs Robinson. (Christian Pedophiles anyone?)

22 July 2008 at 19:46  
Anonymous dexey said...

It would be difficult to understand a Christian homosexual, such as anonymous, being disgusted by homosexuality but as a Christian heterosexual I am disgusted by homosexuals telling me how I should think. It is infuriating how often such notable Christians as Sir Elton have much to say about how Christians should act towards homosexuals.
I am neither cold nor hard towards those homosexuals that I know but I think the sexual act between two males, or females, is disgusting and of no value except for their personal gratification.
Personally, I find it hard to believe that a male molesting a male child is not a homosexual whether born that way, or having chosen that path.

22 July 2008 at 20:00  
Blogger Cato, author of www.toryheaven.com said...

I think Ms Robinson needs to be a little careful about equating what she finds vile and repulsive with what is objectively wrong. Would, for instance, she object to the following statement were it to be uttered by a conservative Catholic:-

"There can be no viler act... than the rebellion against God and the Church practised by those schismatic and heretical Christians called Protestants. There must be sufficient confidence that the community has the best possible protection against such perverts, and it is important that there be a mature public debate on the issues, but the security of our citizens must be our overriding priority."

I can well imagine that such a statement would have been happily uttered by many millions of Catholics during the Counter Reformation period and for centuries thereafter, for whom rebellion against God and the Church in such a way (through schism and heresy) would have been seen as securing for the rebeller eternal damnation - what viler act could be imagined? I suspect however that Ms Robinson (and indeed Your Grace) might disagree with such a view.

To base morality upon personal revulsion is a path fraught with danger. The revulsion must be justified by external authority. Ms Robinson would doubtless cite Scripture as such, but that of course leads us to the very tricky issue of the authority of Scripture, an issue which is so exercising the minds of a number of persons currently gathered at Canterbury.

22 July 2008 at 22:01  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cato:

1) "Would, for instance, she object[...]"

Of course she would. But this is not about "object[ing]" to an opinion: no-one is complaining that homosexuals are complaining. Rather, over here, socialists and other "freedom-loving" folk are actually trying to get Mrs Robinson out of public office because of her "forbidden" opinion. A comparable situation would be if she called for the dismissal of an MP or MLA for "ultra-Catholic" opinions.

2) "Ms [sic] Robinson needs to be a little careful about equating what she finds vile and repulsive with what is objectively wrong."

Again, you assume that the source of her opinion is her disgust and that she expresses it with Scripture. More likely, it is the other way round, but I don't honestly know. Nice projection of opinions though, on your part.

23 July 2008 at 11:05  
Anonymous Jonny Mac said...

anonymous@11:05 - "Rather, over here, socialists and other "freedom-loving" folk are actually trying to get Mrs Robinson out of public office because of her "forbidden" opinion."

anonymous - possibly. I don't have a problem with trying to force someone out of public office because of the opinions he or she holds. Example: imagine she had said the practice of Judaism disgusted her, and that she found Jews disgusting and more repellant than paedophiles. In such a case it would, to my mind, be clearly wrong for her to stay in office. The comments she actually made are on the same continuum, though not as bad: it's just that she claims (I believe wrongly) some support for them in "scripture". The difference is that you, I suspect, have some sympathy with her view.

23 July 2008 at 12:41  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

jonny mac:

Are you serious? Such an opinion (either this or your example) is not against the law and is based on the
"this is not what ordinary people think" fallacy. Democracy speaks for itself and has little need for special interest groups legislating to the State.

You are partially right on Scripture (scare quotes not necessary) regarding homosexuality and paedophilia. Both are equal (one not greater than the other) in terms of punishment in The Father's opinion in the Pentateuch- in the legislative sense. On another level, though - a lexical one - since something called תּועבה תּעבה is considerably more despised and condemned by Him than rape, it would seem (but same treatment though). So there are two levels on which this can be approached Scripturally.

Whether right or wrong though, Mrs. Robinson does not warrant censorship, unless this is the will of the people of Strangford (unlikely, given her majority of 35% is fairly large).

Yes, you are right about me having sympathy with such a view (doesn't nullify my argument though). My MP, on the other hand, once addressed a Tory Party conference and there endorsed the Brighton Hotel bombing. Regrettably, that is the psyche of a plurality of his constituents, and the deafening silence of the media on that remark was fairly noticeable (relative to this remark). Compared to him, I'd rather have someone like Mrs. Robinson as MP - worse things have been said, I'm sure you'll agree.

23 July 2008 at 13:46  
Blogger Jomo said...

Orange fascist assaulted by a liberal fascist or the unspeakable pursuing the uneatable.

Has Mr Dale invented a new sub- category of the enemies of liberty to join the isalmofascist? Welcome to the homofascist!

23 July 2008 at 13:53  
Blogger John Hayward said...

May I commend to His Grace a reflection on Leviticus 20, which makes no distinction between homosexuality and adultery, or incest or bestiality, as well as forms of child abuse - to be found in Consent versus Community, by Jonathan Burnside, reader in Biblical law at Bristol University.

23 July 2008 at 18:59  
Blogger Democratic-Centre said...

Interesting to note that you view her utterance as a personal view point made out loud; however, one wonders whether or not the word of the scriptures should not of itself inform that very personal view in that a more wholesome and propagating Christian message was spoken instead.

Is this not a sign of the weakness of Christian theology or the weakness of those who follow it to actually abide by it when speaking personally?

23 July 2008 at 20:03  
Blogger Cato, author of www.toryheaven.com said...

Anonymous: "Again, you assume that the source of her opinion is her disgust and that she expresses it with Scripture. More likely, it is the other way round, but I don't honestly know. Nice projection of opinions though, on your part."

I don't think I was projecting my opinions on to her. Quite the opposite. As far as I can see, the only reported comments she made express her personal disgust at something. I see no reference to her mentioning Scripture at all. I merely suggested (not projected) that she might very well cite Scripture in her defence to justify her revulsion, and I pointed out that this raised the thorny issue of the authority of scripture.

I do however take your point that it is ridiculous that people are trying to hound her out of office. She is expressing a view which she is quite entitled to hold, and if some people disagree with her then they have the chance to do so at the next election in which she stands. But I was conjecturing, and still conjecture, whether she has anything other than mere personal revuslion to justify her view. That I think we still don't know, and it would be useful to know.

23 July 2008 at 20:09  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find the fake morality tedious, inthe 1970s the cops raided gay bars whilst the Labour Party played with the paedophile information Exchange, and SL-GLF, whowere also paedophiles.

There are a few of both with bums on political benches. So a thank you to Minister Ruane for being the first to ban PIE from teacing in the UK.

Pedophiles are the new rock stars.

Gordon Brown's govt created a further unwelcome link between gay and pedophile at the United Nations Economic and Social Council by supportimng COC, a pedophile organization at the last minute,

they once published a magazine telling fathers how to have sex with their children. Andriesse, P., "Ga eens met uw zoon naar bed" (Try going to bed with your son). In: Seq, Vol. 1, No. 8, 1969, pages 23-27.

They didn't get much better over the years, they're still pedophiles. I don't see anybody attacking Mr. Family Man over that support

The entire thing about Gordon, is that he is a hypocrite. Gays are being attacked for being 'not Queer enough' which is a eupheminism for being anti-pedophile.


'Through ongoing debate and exploration during the project, members of the project team have challenged the pervasive images of romantic love and life-long monogamy portrayed by
the lesbian and gay characters in the children¹s books used in project schools'


Those activists are in primary schools in England, they're opposed to integration, they've contempt for 'gay marriage' or normative copying,

So Gordon is paying extreme gays, like the COC and PIE types, to harass te nice guys, the child safe gays.

I'd say that is homophobic.

24 July 2008 at 06:49  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

IF YOU ARE TRULY BORN AGAIN YOU ARE A NEW CREATION! AND BORN OF GOD.
GOD IS NOT GAY!.
I WOULD ADD THAT GOD LOVES GAYS AS HE LOVES ALL OF US IN THIS FALLEN WORLD.
HE LOVES US TOO MUCH TO LEAVE US IN OUR FALLEN STATE.HENCE IN THE NEW CREATION "THE OLD HAS PASSED AWAY THE NEW HAS COME, AND IS OF GOD"
TO BE BORN AGAIN IS GODS SOLUTION TO MANS PROBLEMS.

24 July 2008 at 08:22  
Anonymous Zenobia said...

"You are partially right on Scripture (scare quotes not necessary) regarding homosexuality and paedophilia. Both are equal (one not greater than the other) in terms of punishment in The Father's opinion in the Pentateuch- in the legislative sense." anon

But these references belong in the Old Testament which was the Jewish Law - Now I believe that Jesus said “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. Math 5.17" so on the surface it appears that you are correct in your reference.

But Paul says “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes” (Rom. 10:4) - which is a little different. Further he goes to to say "There is nothing outside a person that by going into him can defile him’ …. (Thus he declared all foods clean.)” (Mark 7:15-19)"

Which appears to contradict the previous statement of Jesus.If, as Paul states, Jesus fulfilled the law, then the gentiles are not under the Old Testament laws, and all reference to homosexuality and its morality should rest only on what Jesus says. And as someone above has previously pointed out - on this subject he is silent I believe.

24 July 2008 at 10:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some comments have been made about Mr Dale. Well, it quickly became clear from his blog, and from the early days of the not-very-much-lamaneted demise of 18 Doughty Street, that his main aim in life is to promote the gay agenda. This seems to have become even more shrill, and I agree with a previous comment that there is a now a new category of homofascist to which Dale assigns everyone that opposes his views. It is about time people stood up to these Nazis.
Personally, I stopped reading his blog on a regular basis some time ago, and only turn to it when a comment appears on Conservative Home, or Cranmer, or the like.
To think that Dale could, as an A-lister (is he still?), one day enter Parliament is horrendous in prospect. His single-theme agenda would do great damage to the Party.

24 July 2008 at 12:45  
Blogger Unitalian said...

I wonder whether the self-styled Christians here really believe in the teachings of Jesus, or simply the traditions and prejudices of the church?

Certainly there's plenty of anti-gay talk in the bible but there is little evidence that Jesus held much of a view. Indeed, given his teaching of love and forgiveness, and his habit of embracing outcasts, it certainly would seem out of character for Christ to be a homophobe.

Given this, one has to wonder why they claim to follow Jesus. Surely they would be better describing themslves as Niceans or some such, given that their beliefs owe more to the prejudices of the old Jewish faith and the politics of Rome than anything Jesus taught.

24 July 2008 at 22:04  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree wholeheartedly with unitalian. I hasten to add that the anti-gay verses in the Bible are not as clear-cut and isolated from context as Christian homophobes would like them to be.

25 July 2008 at 18:15  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

She's another example of why scummy religiously inclined, half-witted, idiot, frothing at the mouth, god bothering, fools should be kept as far away from positions of responsibility as possible.

I'm sure Iris and the religious scripture she follows have caused more harm to children than homosexuals ever have.

Better a bugger than a bigot.

29 July 2008 at 11:57  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

all i have to add on this topic is...

i hope that bitch burns in hell.

31 July 2008 at 10:30  
Anonymous Convinced Anglican said...

Your Grace, with the utmost respect, many of your communicants are simplistic - not to mention unChristian - in their analyses. Like everything else in NI, this has an historical context.

Iris Robinson's party - Ian Paisley's DUP - (the political wing of the Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster) has a 30+ year history of inciting violence against chosen scapegoats.

Mr Paisley, whilst denouncing the Pope as "an abomination", equally detested, and preached against, Anglicans as "a half-way house". At the same time he found NI Presbyterian theology anti-biblical.

The Paisley answer was himself. All powerful and infallible. He founded his own denomination and his own political party. Mr Paisley became the infallible POPE of a minority denomination and the Dictator of a minority political party.

As a student I attended (out of curiosity) only ONE Ian Paisley 'rally'; the speeches raised hairs on the back of my neck. A terrifying experience, I felt the presence of (there is no other word) evil.

I grew up in a small mixed Catholic/Protestant community. We neither feared nor hated each other. In the 1960s NI was 'moving' towards a sense of community. Children who benefited from the 1948 Education Act, grammar schools and university, were questioning the status quo.

I am an Irish Anglican. Along with many of my co-religionists, I marched for Civil Rights.
What the media failed to report WAS: ALL the working-class in NI were disenfranchised at that time. ONLY a property owner, OR the 'name' on the rent book, had a right to vote in local elections. The slogan 'One Man One Vote' was a demand that ALL people of voting age be given the vote. How idealistic we were!!

Paisley's hysterical rabble-rousing of a "Vatican plot" led to attacks on civil rights marchers and on working class Catholic homes, ergo the infamous Bombay Street burn-out. In response, the Provisional IRA was formed. The 'old' IRA had disarmed and were nearly 10 years into a political process.

Robinson's 'latest' is in a long line of cheap and emotive DUP appeals to the lowest common denominator of bigotry.

Since the advent of the 'Chuckle Brothers', they need a different target. There are NO 'militant homosexual groups' or 'militant secularists', in NI. It is perhaps the most over-evangelised area of the British Isles.

Good Friday 1998, was, in the words of a dedicated peacemaker (Seamus Mallon) 'Sunningdale for late developers'. Every detail, lauded as 'progress', had been achieved in 1974 at Sunningdale but, Paisley said 'No'.

Sunningdale was another "Roman plot". In response, he incited the horrendously intimidating 'Workers' Strike' which gave rise to yet more PIRA violence.

Those 'supporting Iris' should beware. DUP/Free Presbyteranism has always worked towards a theocracy in NI. Paisley as Pope and all laws subject to the Old Testament as interpreted by Dr Ian K. Paisley.

Today, to attack Roman Catholics or even the Pope, would mean a loss of ministerial posts and multiple salaries per household.

The DUP is a party obsessed with the word 'NO'; their existence depends on saying 'No'; the small number of law-abiding homosexuals in NI is an easy target - homosexuals do not resort to bombing their neighbours.

6 August 2008 at 16:28  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gays are actually speeding up the return of Jesus to earth as Judge. In Luke 17 Jesus predicted that just before His return there will be a mysterious worldwide resurgence of the "days of Lot" (see Gen. 19) on an unparalleled scale that will be caused by unseen powers who will be allowed by God to manipulate many. The ultimate goal of Gaydom (will Al-GAYda become scarier than Al-Qaeda?) can be seen already if one Googles "Obama Supports Public Depravity" which often occurs in Nancy Pelosi's district, and San Francisco's mayor tells cops to NOT arrest anyone exercising the illegal, kinky, child-abusing "rights" Obama approves of which are flaunted publicly in front of children! After recovering, Google "Gay Pedophilia and Obama" and "God to Same-Sexers: Hurry Up." By fulfilling their predicted worldwide role, gays are not only making the Bible even more believable but are in effect hurrying up the return of Jesus
as Judge! Dr. Know

26 November 2008 at 02:41  

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