Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Did I hear that correctly?

I must confess that I have been shocked out of hibernation by the Prime Minister's comments on the case of Eunice and Owen Johns. (See here and here) Mr Cameron said “This matter was decided by a court in the appropriate way and I think we should rest with the judgement that was made.” He also commented “I think Christians should be tolerant and welcoming and broad minded.”

On the subject of what it means to be tolerant and welcoming and broad minded, I don’t wish to say much. (Though my understanding is that being ‘tolerant’ means that you permit beliefs that you disagree with and believe in allowing people to do things that you personally disapprove of.) Mr Cameron appears to be labelling Mr and Mrs Johns as not being tolerant and welcoming and broad minded. Perhaps he should be pressed on this.

However, I must confess that Mr Cameron’s comments on the judgement that really astonish me. Is he really saying “I believe that the law should ban people from fostering children if they hold that homosexual behaviour is morally wrong?” For most of the 20th Century, to say nothing of the 19th, 18th and 17th, to believe that such a prohibition should be enshrined in law would have been absolutely unthinkable, and any politician who advocated such a view would have been thought to be absolutely mad.

Does the Prime Minister really hold the view that anyone who holds traditional views about sexual morality should be banned from fostering children?

And what will be next? What questions about beliefs and values will prospective foster parents be asked in the future - and what answers will result in them being considered to be unsuitable?

I might have some difficulty getting back to sleep after this.


Albert said...

You're back!

Yes, this was a tragic and disturbing case. It is important to notice the effect this will have on children. There are not enough families to foster or adopt as it is. Cutting out orthodox Christians and Jews as well as Muslims is hardly going to help matters. Moreover, it also means that it is now impossible for a child from a religious home who (for example) is suddenly orphaned to be fostered in a home which reflect his religious upbringing.

No one can claim this is about putting children first. The interests of very vulnerable children are being sacrificed to bolster a very grown up agenda. It comes as no surprise that a PM who is content with abortion thinks such things.

Young Mr. Brown said...

You're back!

Sort of, but not very. I've got a lot of other things going on, and am struggling to find the will to blog. It's not for want of ideas going around in my head.