But there are differences between Neville Chamberlain and David Cameron. The former’s appeasement during that cataclysmic civilisational clash was sincere if misguided; the latter’s treachery on this different but deep civilisational issue is cynical and slickly perfidious. Chamberlain was forced into the Munich pact by Hitler’s aggression and a commendable fear of war; Cameron has freely chosen to aggressively crusade for same-sex marriage (SSM) when there is no need and miniscule demand. The pre-war premier’s democratic credentials and popular support were unquestionable; today’s has neither manifesto mandate nor the legitimacy derived from proper consultation (here).
It also could be Cameron’s Iraq moment. SSM will hopefully become a political lead weight round his neck that the Iraq war became to his model, hero and now public sunken wreck, Tony Blair.
Why? The good news is that Cameron’s gay marriage obsession is generating Tory grass-root rebellion and resignations (here) and recently colleagues and I have been doing our bit to help the haemorrhage of Tory membership. Given the increasing frenzy of shrill pro-SSM media comment, our aim has been simple: to slow down the Cameroon SSM juggernaut and create space for proper reasoned debate.
How can we do that? For the past couple of years I’ve been an active member of the Marriage, Sex and Culture group of Anglican Mainstream (AM), the information resource for the global Anglican Communion (here).
In July Policy Exchange, David Cameron’s favourite think-tank (here), published a pro-SSM report What’s In A Name? (here). It is half-baked, superficial, overtly political and, for ‘the UK’s leading think-tank’ (here), well below standard.
In August and on behalf of AM I challenged Policy Exchange to a fringe debate in front of the Tory faithful at the October Conservative party conference. We intended to demonstrate to the grassroots the weakness of the gay marriage argument. Policy Exchange obligingly picked up the gauntlet and, despite on/off twists and turns and ‘lies and duplicity’ – all recorded in detail on Archbishop Cranmer blog (here) and especially (here) – the debate finally took place (‘a result’, according to Cranmer) at Jury’s Inn in Birmingham. You can watch it (here).
(Incidentally there was a revealing moment during a pre-debate planning meeting. Policy Exchange wanted gay marriage to be called ‘equal marriage’ which implies of course that conventional marriage is unequal or unfair. I countered by insisting that conventional marriage should be termed ‘real marriage’ which implies rightly that SSM is fake and false. The atmosphere dropped from friendly to frosty – but they also dropped their demand.)
As part of AM preparations for the debate one of our group, R S Harris, produced a superb and extensive rebuttal of gay marriage, Is There A Case For Same-Sex Marriage?, now available as an e-book (here) or hard copy from TLB Direct, PO Box 3837, Swindon, SN6 9DS. The book is commended by luminaries like the former Lord Chancellor Lord Mackay of Clashfern, was edited by Lynda Rose (here) and is the first of its kind – you should get a copy.
It argues from the evidence that:
• The concept of ‘equal marriage’ is fundamentally flawed as it presupposes a questionable notion of ‘equality’ and ignores the essential and defining components of conventional marriage.
• Gay marriage falsely treats parenting roles as interchangeable.
• Same-sex marriage wrongly assumes that the benefits of marriage are automatically transferable to same-sex couples who enter the same institution.
• There is no evidence that same-sex couples will benefit from the ‘commitment device’ invoked by marriage.
• Gay marriage introduces a disturbing, unproven and socially risky new norm into society, that children do not need both a mother and father for optimal development, when all the evidence points the other way.
• Same-sex parenting studies are fundamentally flawed in their sample size and methodology when measured against commonly accepted social science standards.
• If ‘love and commitment’ are the sole criterion for marriage then alarming consequences ensue such as the validation of incestuous relationships, as well as the recognition of polygamous and polyamorous relationships as has already begun in countries with SSM.
• Fear of causing offence makes society tread silently around disturbing medical data from both the UK and the US that, like smoking, homosexual activity is intrinsically unhealthy. For instance unlike vaginal lining, rectal lining is unable to withstand penetrative activity without medical damage. The active promotion of gay lifestyle in schools that SSM marriage inevitably entails is medically harmful for our children, especially boys, and costly to the health service.
I led a small team that laboriously searched the internet for the contact details of 350 chairmen of local Conservative associations up and down the country. Early last week we sent them each a copy of the book to provide them the evidence and to fuel more rebellion in the Tory ranks.
Yesterday the Sunday Telegraph ran an article about the opposition from Tory chairmen and the loss of party members to UKIP which opposes gay marriage. “David Cameron is barking mad,” said one (here).
The knives are out. The Tories are bleeding…