Further to our report on how the Northern Irish peers voted during the second reading of the Marriage (Same-sex Couples) Bill last week, today there is news that Lord Mawhinney, one of their number, has proposed an amendment to be put before committee.
Page 11, line 5, at end insert—
“( ) It shall be lawful to refer to marriage between two people of the opposite
sex as “traditional marriage” and it shall be lawful to refer to marriage
between two people of the same sex as “same sex marriage”.”
Now if such an amendment were to pass, surely in hate crimes legislation we should also insert a new clause:
It shall be lawful to refer to people of non-Caucasian colouring by whatever term you deem fit and call it “traditional racism”
Or in the human trafficking legislation that will soon come before Parliament:
It shall be lawful to keep other humans of non-British origin as chattel and refer to it as “traditional slavery”
Or add another amendment to Marriage legislation which says:
It shall be lawful upon marriage should the husband choose to do so to take possession of all his wife’s possessions and refer to it as “traditional marriage”.
Any one of these examples and no doubt there are numerous others show just how transient tradition is when things move on. To actually legislate for something being called tradition is to say all things are equal but some traditional things are more equal than others.
I’m not sure if this amendment with Lord Mawhinney’s name to it makes him a “traditional fool” or a “traditional bigot”? Either way the protection of such wording is both foolish and somewhat allowing bigotry to carry on after, as seems obvious from the last vote, the legislation is passed.