EU court dumps on gay rights

Mail Online

The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg has declared that smae sex marriage is not a human right:

Same-sex marriages are not a human right, European judges have ruled.

Their decision shreds the claim by ministers that gay marriage is a universal human right and that same-sex couples have a right to marry because their mutual commitment is just as strong as that of husbands and wives.

The ruling was made by judges of the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg following a case involving a lesbian couple in a civil partnership who complained the French courts would not allow them to adopt a child as a couple.

The ruling also says that if gay couples are allowed to marry, any church that offers weddings will be guilty of discrimination if it declines to marry same-sex couples.

It means that if MPs legislate for same-sex marriage, the Coalition’s promise that churches will not be compelled to conduct the weddings will be worthless.

The ruling comes just days after the Government published a consultation paper which promised marriage to same-sex couples and made clear that Britain is only catching up with other countries.

Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone said: ‘Put simply, it’s not right that a couple who love each other and want to formalise a commitment to each other should be denied the right to marry.’

However, the Strasbourg judges ruled that because the French couple were civil partners, they did not have the rights of married people, who in France have the sole right to adopt a child as a couple.

 

Enhanced by Zemanta
 


THANK YOU for being a subscriber. Because of you Whaleoil is going from strength to strength. It is a little known fact that Whaleoil subscribers are better in bed, good looking and highly intelligent. Sometimes all at once! Please Click Here Now to subscribe to an ad-free Whaleoil.

  • Peter Wilson

    It was a good fight, but I fear the battle for gay adoption/marriage is now surely lost.

    • Kosh103

      Dont bet on it.

    • The Court battle, maybe. But the battle for the public mind, and for legislation (which is ideally how equality would be achieved anyway) has a way to go.

  • tas

    Although I support gay marriage, I have to agree with such a decision.

    Human rights are watered down far too often. Human rights are basic freedoms–life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness–not such luxuries as marriage tax incentives, subsidised housing, and strike action.

    • Kosh103

      So love is not a human right?

      • Rufus

         No Kosh, it isn’t, & you cannot demand love through legislation.  That’s not how love works.

      • Kosh103

        No no person on earth has the right to love.

        Wow, what a sad sad view of the world you have.

      • Kosh103

        Oh and also rufus – they are legislating love. They are making laws to say straight love is more right, valid etc than gay love.

        We are not asking for love to be legislated, we are asking for the Govt to stop crapping all over our love with laws.

      • Steve P

        So your love isn’t valid unless you have a certificate from the government? I think that makes you the one with the sad view of the world.

      • Kosh103

        Way to miss the point steve.

        Govts try to make gay love invalid by passing all sorts of laws to keep it from the same rights straight love has.

        Love is love and the Govts of the world should stop trying to deny this.

      • Steve P

        And what rights are those exactly, Kosh? And why do you think society extends those rights only to married couples?

        I suppose in your mind it’s because society hates gays…

      • tas

        “So love is not a human right?”

        LOL!

      • Peter Wilson

        In fact love is one of the few rights that has to be earned, rather than demanded.

      • Rufus

         Kosh:
        “Oh
        and also rufus – they are legislating love. They are making laws to say
        straight love is more right, valid etc than gay love.

        We are not asking for love to be legislated, we are asking for the Govt to stop crapping all over our love with laws.”

        1. You are being contradictory. 

        On the one hand you don’t want legislation to push one type of love over another, but on the other hand, you do want to twist and debase the current definition of marriage to include homosexuality/incest/polygamy etc. 

        In fact, you want special treatment for yourself and others who share your minority views, and everyone else be damned.

        2. You don’t have a clue do you?

        Marriage is protected by law as society has realised over time that
        it is the best environment for raising children.  This ensures society
        stays stable and flourishes.  Therefore it protects that relationship.

      • Kosh103

        Rufus we have been through this before – marriage is what we make it. It is not some sacred religious cow that has never been changed. Anyone who has tried that argument have ended up looking very very stupid indeed.

    • You don’t think this would come within “the pursuit of happiness”?

      • grumpy

        Nope, pursuit a “a-penis”

      • Rufus

         Sure – just like fishing.  Or scrabble.  Or whatever else makes you happy.  Now get the government to legislate for you.

      • 1. The government does legislate fishing.
        2. I don’t want the government to legislate this. I want the government to naff off.

      • Rufus

        ok, not a good analogy.

        Point is, “the pursuit of happiness” is rather vague.  You could argue “broadband” is a human right, if it makes you happy.  And then complain that you don’t have access to broadband, because you’re poor, so the government simply MUST provide you with a free connection.

      • Rufus

         Also – how do you envisage the government “naffing off” would work?

      • Not regulate marriage at all. Like happens in a number of countries which leave marriage up to churches and other institutions. Formal recognition of partnerships occurs very simply, and people who want to get married as well can do so in any way they want by anyone they want.

      • Rufus

        Interesting. I didn’t realise there were countries that operate like this.  Which ones, out of curiosity?

        So you’d like the govt. to simply recognise a relationship, but not define it as such, and leave it at that? 

  • Blair Mulholland

    If it is really the case that churches in Europe are now going to be forced to marry gay couples against their beliefs, what is the greater human rights violation?   This blog continues to claim that governments failing to issue certificates with the right words on them is a gross human rights abuse, but conveniently ignores the real human rights abuses going on in Europe where it is now largely illegal to be against men having sex with other men.

    • Kosh103

      You dont have to get married in a church, but is says a lot about christians, jews, etc.. who are gay who want to.

      Perhaps the church (and it is finally doing this more and more) needs to ask what would Christ do? As opposed to how can we keep our control?

      • Rufus

         Christ would obey his heavenly father. 

        “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.” Matthew 5:17.

      • Kosh103

        Oh rufus – swing and a miss.

        You are confusing Phrophets with priests.

        Fail on your part. Try again.

      • Rufus

         No Kosh, you asked, what would Christ do.  That’s what he said he came do to.  I even provided a reference.

        What do you reckon He would do?

      • Rufus

         Kosh, FYI “Law and Prophets” is a way the people in Jesus’ time referred to their scriptures, what we know as the Old Testament.

      • Kosh103

        Oh rufus – you are sooooo off on the whole phrophets line. I love how ignore fact.

        I rekon Christ would hang out with the hookers, the dope heads, the poor, the needy, the hungery the queers – all the outcasts, like he did last time, and speak out against people such as yourself who attack people over the issue of love.

        But please try and use my faith against me. You will not win.

      • Greg M

         Agree with that bit Kosh. J.C. did enjoy getting on the turps with the fisherman and builders. No doubt there was a dirty girl or two at the pissups.

        Mind you, even I come up with some good prophecies at a pissup, I should take notes, I may be famous in 2000 years.

      • Blair Mulholland

         It’s none of your business what the church should and shouldn’t do – they have a right to practice their beliefs without being forced to do things that are against those beliefs by outsiders.

        As for what Christ would do:

        “As
        he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees
        brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her
        in front of the crowd. 4 “Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. 5 The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?”
        6 They
        were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against
        him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger. 7 They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” 8 Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.
        9 When
        the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with
        the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with
        the woman. 10 Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?”
        11 “No, Lord,” she said.
        And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.””

      • Jester

        “I rekon Christ would hang out with the hookers, the dope heads, the poor, the needy, the hungery the queers”

        Kind of like a cross between a Darren Hughes and Trevor Mallard?

      • Peter Wilson

        I’m picking the homophobic church types would come to this conclusion:

        “Jesus was into forgiveness of sins, and may even be able to heal gays of their heterophobia, so we should follow his example.”

    • Gazzaw

      It will be interesting to see how the mosques in the EU react to being forced to conduct gay marriages.

      • Peter Wilson

        Comment of the day!!

      • Alloytoo

        Are Mosques currently required to conduct Christian, Hindu or secular marriages?

        Why would they be required to conduct same sex marriages.

      • Gazzaw

        One assumes Alloy that if the EU Parliament requires churches to perform same-sex marriages that there will be legal expectations for mosques & synagogues to  do the same.

  • Lisa A

    “The ruling also says that if gay couples are allowed to marry, any
    church that offers weddings will be guilty of discrimination if it
    declines to marry same-sex couples.”

    This doesn’t make sense.  Allowing gay marriage is about just that, allowing gay marriage to happen.  A church that refuses to conduct a wedding between same-sex partners wouldn’t prevent same-sex marriage if the law allowed it – it would simply be deciding not to perform the ceremony in an individual case.  And even it were discriminatory, in the first instance, to refuse, this cannot be a reason to deny same-sex couples the right to marry.  The court has basically given precedence of marriage celebrants’ “right” to choose not to perform a same-sex wedding over the right of same-sex couples to marry.  Again this is wrong in principle.  If this really was a legitimate concern, any same-sex marriage legislation could simply give the so-called “right” to marriage celebrants to refuse perform ceremonies, for any reason – the legislators could even call it “moral, ethical or religious belief” if they wanted to. In any case, just look at the discrimination that goes on in, say, recruitment of emplyees, or selecting tenants to rent your property: it’s only discrimination if it can be shown that a refusal was because of ethnicity, age, disability, sexual orientation etc.  A bigotted marriage celebrant would be silly to say “no because you’re gay” and could instead say “no because I’m too busy”, and the couple would then go find a celebrant who wasn’t bigotted – simple.  Regardless of anything, placing more importance on a marriage celebrant’s so-called right not to perform same-sex weddings than same-sex couples’ right to marry is illogical and wrong.

    • Peter Wilson

      That’s a bit naive isn’t it. To paraphrase your language, but looking at the contra-position:

      It would be only a matter of time before someone targetted the family-friendly marriage celebrant, setting him up to admit he didn’t want to perform a ceremony for the anti-family gay couple.

      I guess the gay person could look around for an family hating marriage celebrant, but that’s just creating division.

      What the ruling says is that more thought is required before heading down the road of gay adoptions and marriage.

      • Lisa A

        “It would be only a matter of time before someone targetted the
        family-friendly marriage celebrant, setting him up to admit he didn’t
        want to perform a ceremony for the anti-family gay couple.”

        You and nasska and the court are assuming, wrongly, that allowing same-sex marriage would either force celebrants who opposed same-sex marriage to perform the ceremony against their will or face the strong arm of the law.  This is just nonsense.  All that’s required is to allow same-sex marriage and include legislation, in the Human Rights Act or wherever, that marriage celebrants can, on the grounds of moral, ethical or religious belief, refuse to perform a same-sex marriage ceremony and that doing so is not discriminatory – simple. 

        “I guess the gay person could look around for an family hating marriage celebrant, but that’s just creating division.”

        This is just a silly comment. Nobody is saying anything about ‘family hating marriage celebrants’, if there is even such a thing.  The issue is about the reasons some people believe are valid for refusing to allow same-sex marriage.  Alleged “discrimination” against marriage celebrants who refuse to perform a same-sex ceremony is not one of them.

        And just to finish off, to infer that a marriage celebrant who is prepared to perform a same-sex wedding ceremony is a “family hating marriage celebrant” is truely pathetic.

    • Blair Mulholland

       Oh, so it’s not really a violation of human rights because the pastor could just lie.  Thanks for clearing that up.  I’ll be sure to let all the Turkmen, North Korean, Saudi and Cuban dissidents know.

      • nasska

         I must be coming down with something…….I actually agree with Blair
        on this.  The churches are opposed to gay marriage & it is a gross
        infringement of  the rights of the organisations & their members to expect them to act contrary to their beliefs.

      • Lisa A

         Are you illiterate?  Read what I said:

        “If this really was a legitimate concern, any same-sex marriage
        legislation could simply give the so-called “right” to marriage
        celebrants to refuse perform ceremonies, for any reason – the
        legislators could even call it “moral, ethical or religious belief” if
        they wanted to.”

        There are plenty of examples where something that on the face of it could be discriminatory but in the interests of public policy or social norms or any other reason making that thing discriminatory is undesirable, therefore legislation is used to say that it isn’t.  Try, for example, getting the Human Rights Commission to say the old-age pension discriminates on the basis of age, and see how far you get. There a ton of other examples.  A marriage celebrant choosing not to perform a wedding for a same-sex couple would simply be regarded as a choice that they can make without being accused of discrimination. If it’s necessary to legislate for this then so be it, but saying that the potential discrimination brought by “requiring” all marriage celebrants to perform same-sex weddings is a reason not allow same-sex marriage full stop is just preposturous. It’s throwing the baby out with the bathwater territory.

        “Oh, so it’s not really a violation of human rights because the pastor could just lie.”

        Again, are you illiterate?  I did not say this.  I was pointing to the reality of what goes on to show that people still make choices, for what ever reason, and you’re not going to stop that happening. I was referring to any situation where evidence is required
        to bring a particular result – failure to prove a charge of theft doesn’t mean someone didn’t take somthing. You seem to be saying that if marriage were available to same-sex couples then all marriage celebrants must be forced to perform weddings for gay couples if requested and that if they refused on the grounds of sexual orientation then we should knock them over the head with the Human Rights Act.  Great to see you’ve joined the Labour Party.  Helen Clark and Margaret Wislon would be proud of you.  What we need to do is use judgment as to what’s desirable and what’s not.  Moral, ethical or religious belief as a basis for refusing to something and where that refusal doesn’t impinge on the rights of others (i.e. same-sex couples would simply find a celebrant who agrees to perform the wedding so could still marry). Do you also believe we should be able to nail people under the Human Rights Act who decide not to rent their house to someone because of the prospective tenant’s ethnicity without any evidence?  Again, judgment is necessary to decide what we think is desirable and and what we think is not. If you wanted to relax the evidence required to deal to all discrimination maybe you’d get a sympathetic ear from John Banks? – although ironically you’d first have to convince him it’s worth his while listening to a member of the Labour Party.

  • Rufus

     Kosh – “marriage is what we make it”

    I disagree.  I believe God first instituted marriage.  Jesus referred to this when he taught the Pharisees in Matthew 19.

    But say we agree that “marriage is what we make it” – so marriage could, in the future, include a man marrying his pet sheep? 

    Or brother marrying brother?  Mother and daughter?

    I mean, get enough people to agitate for it, and you could make it anything you wanted, right?

    Kosh: “Love is love and the Govts of the world should stop trying to deny this. “

    • Peter Wilson

      A man marrying a pet sheep is just silly, because there is no free will on the part of sheep – we assume not, anyway.

    • Kosh103

      I suggest you read a Bible and see what forms of marriage were allowed.

      In the creation story, there was no wedding, God got Adam a woman and basicly said, here you go.

      So far from God being the creator of marriage, he was more of a pimp. ;0D The vicar found that little insight rather funny.

      But anywho, you are free to belive God created marriage (even if you are misusing scripture) but your beliefs are not everyones, so why do you get to condem others?

  • Alloytoo

    Churches perform legal marriages (in most western style democracies) under the auspicious of some sort of Marriage act. 

    Not all priests are licenced to perform legal marriages

    The law normally institutes a minimum set of secular requirements required to legalize the marraige.

    Conducting a marriage is a contracted for service, not a legal obligation upon request, and priests have the right to decline to perform a ceremony or indeed make the church (private property) available for said ceremony for any number of fivolous reasons.

    The notion that extending a secular marraige act to same sex couples would suddenly undo the rights currently exercised by priests and Church (or indeed secular marriage officers) is baseless FUD.

31%