In case anyone is concerned after yesterday’s post that I’ve gone all political with my knives out for Labour, I haven’t but sometimes you just can’t ignore party politics. It’s the same with these links today which mainly relate to this week’s Conservative Party conference. It’s not that I’ve chosen to forget the other conferences, it’s just down to what comes out in the news that’s of interest and relevance to what I talk about.
One of the most controversial speeches so far was not from a politician but rather by Lord Carey, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, at the Campaign for Marriage meeting in Birmingham Town Hall yesterday which was completely packed out with around 1,000 people in attendance making it the largest fringe event at the conference. The BBC have summarised the event including Carey’s reference comparing the treatment of opponents of gay marriage to the way Jews were at start of Nazi rule in Germany:
“Let’s have a sensible debate about this [gay-marriage], not call people names. Let’s remember that the Jews in Nazi Germany, what started it all against them was when they started being called names. That was the first stage towards that totalitarian state.”
Unsurprisingly this has grabbed the headlines upsetting some, but also finding support from others. Part of this comes down to whether Carey’s comments have been correctly understood. Tom Chivers in the Telegraph grudgingly finds himself agreeing with Lord Carey. On the other hand, Martin Robbins in the Guardian has little sympathy for him. In the process of dismissing Carey’s comments he does make a valid point that gay people under the Nazis suffered as much as Jews did.
The Campaign for Marriage meeting also coincided with the news that 71% of Tory constituency chairmen think the proposal to legalise marriage, which the Prime Minister has pledged will be law by 2015, should be abandoned.
You can watch the summary video of the event at the end of the post.
Changing subject, George Osborne’s proposals to slash another £10 billion from the welfare budget makes me wonder just how far he is willing to push his cuts on those at the poorest end of society. At what point does it do more harm than it’s worth? The Children’s Society have responded with a press release. This is part of it:
‘The government has previously made a welcome commitment to protecting the most vulnerable in society. So the chancellor needs to level with the British public about what a further drastic cut in welfare payments will mean for children and families, and who will be affected.
‘The truth is that the majority of families that receive welfare support are working families. And more than half of children living in poverty are in working families. These families will have to lose out too if the government is to fund cuts to the welfare bill of this magnitude.”
Blogger, Caroline Farrow has discussed the effects of Osborne’s proposals on families and also on whether it is likely to impact abortions. She writes from a Catholic perspective, but there is plenty that is relevant in it to any reader, especially the first reply.
Just for political balance, there are a couple of excellent pieces I’ve read relating to Labour and the Liberal Democrat’s conferences. David Keen at Opinionated Vicar writes about Ed Miliband’s curious talk of his faith, although given that he’s an atheist it’s somewhat hard to work out what he has faith in. Well worth reading. Also CARE have written on the debate and passing of a motion at the Lib Dem conference backing the legalisation of ‘medically assisted dying’. Definitely not the best decision taken by them.
And with that we reach the end of this conference broadcast.