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The following report from the UK’s Daily Mail newspaper reports on how Christian beliefs on the sanctity of marriage were unsupported by an English court as it applied the Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2007.
This article is presented as it is a milestone in English law and its interface with traditional Christian beliefs and values. STL does not support gay relationships and marriage.
By Daily Mail Comment
Last updated at 1:35 AM on 19th January 2011
As the judge accepted, Peter and Hazelmary Bull, aged 70 and 66, are decent and benevolent people.
They have no dislike of homosexuals, whom they often welcome to their small Cornish hotel, treating them exactly as they do unmarried heterosexuals.
Indeed, they had only one motive in refusing a double room to civil partners Martyn Hall and Steven Preddy.
In the words of Judge Andrew Rutherford, this was their ‘perfectly orthodox Christian belief’ that sex outside marriage, straight or gay, is wrong.
It is because they live by that belief, held through the centuries in what is still called a Christian country, that today the Bulls face ruin.
They’ve been found to have acted unlawfully under the Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2007 and ordered to pay £3,600 in damages.
Of course, some will side firmly with the civil partners in this classic clash between competing rights and attitudes.
After all, Mr Hall and Mr Preddy clearly had reason to feel angry and humiliated at being turned away — particularly if Judge Rutherford was right in rejecting claims that their case was a set-up.
But since no malice against a minority was involved, the Mail feels more sympathy with the Bulls, who argue that Christians are increasingly marginalised.
Yes, it is good that society accepts same sex relationships and recognises the rights of civil partners. But why is it then so intolerant of people like the Bulls?
Is there no place for a good-natured couple, approaching old age, to live by the orthodox beliefs of the religion to which Britain owes its identity?
Ultimately, the fault lies with the last parliament, which delighted in trampling on traditional values.
But was it really necessary for the Equality Commission to throw the full weight of the state — and taxpayers’hard-earned money — into victimising a couple who meant nothing but well?
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