Friday, 1 June 2012

Conference without a venue

That would have been a good alternative title to the recent ‘colloquium’ organised by Christian Concern.

The “One Man, One Woman - Making the case for marriage, for the good of society” conference was first planned to take place at The Law Society in London until they decided that the ‘content of the conference sat uncomfortably’ with their diversity policy.

Then it was relocated to the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre opposite Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament, but this booking was also cancelled – on the afternoon before the event! 

At the very last minute Christian Concern managed to find a hotel – more concerned with business than political correctness – which hosted the event for an undisclosed number of participants.

So is this political correctness gone mad?

After all, as Christian Concern have said, “Concerns have been raised by many that supporting marriage between one man and one woman, which is still the current legal definition of marriage, is now considered ‘homophobic’ by those pursing the ‘equality and diversity’ agenda.”

Is having a traditional view of marriage now beyond the pale?  Unacceptable in today’s equality led society?  Is this, indeed, an attack on freedom of speech even when the organisers claimed that the meeting would be a debate between contributors with differing views on marriage.

But the problem with the conference was indeed with the content – not the title - because the difficulty with many groups who are fighting tooth and nail to uphold 'traditional marriage' against ‘redefinition’ is that they find themselves having to rubbish those they want to exclude.

Despite Andrea Williams claim that it was a discussion among people with different views on marriage, all the summaries of speakers included in the ‘Full Colloquium Report’ were definitely against allowing gay people to get married.

What is more, the picture they painted of same-sex couples is highly derogatory:

  • According to the speakers, same-sex relationships have no concern for family – they “simply want to affirm a particular adult lifestyle”. 
  • Same-sex marriages “are likely to eliminate the role of fathers in the lives of children”.
  • Same-sex relationships are fickle and transient – “It is very rare for same-sex couples to stay together in a life-long committed relationship”.
  • In short, “The terms ‘same-sex relationships’ and ‘marriage’ are mutually exclusive”.  Perhaps this is because “Each and every faithful marriage is like an amplifier of all that we know as humans to be instinctively noble, enriching and true for human flourishing.”  So obviously, that rules same-sex couples out!
  • After all one speaker said that the current move towards same-sex marriage is the concluding step of a cunning plan.  According to Cristina Odone, journalist and media commentator, the strategy is outlined in a report from 1987 called, ‘How America Will Conquer Its Fear and Hatred of Gays in the 90s’. The final stage in the conspiracy is that “same-sex relationships... should be “celebrated” and presented as a happy and healthy lifestyle”.  Heaven forbid!

At the end of the day, if you can’t uphold your own view of marriage except by tearing into the people you want to exclude, perhaps you should have your booking cancelled.


  1. I do agree with the Law Society cancelling this booking in line with their diversity policy. For the Law Society to allow this conference might count as "indirect discrimination". The Equality Act 2010 makes it clear that indirect discrimination covers circumstances where individuals might be put at a disadvantage, or feel harrassed or put off/or deterred. A gay person working for the Law Society might well find that the fact of this conference makes them feel at a disadvantage or deterred from being employed/ remaining within an organisation. If the hosting of the conference was seen as an endorsement of these views (whether it is or not) then that might help create a culture where indirect or direct discrimination was seen to be acceptable. The Act encourages employers to take "positive action" to eradicate any form of discrimination or perceived discrimination in their organisation (although positive action is not a legal requirement.)

  2. They want to pass off their vile views as discussion and colloqium- whereas it was patently lies and hate, out of their own mouth.

    Who can ever forget the third Reich and its lies and hate -- and where it led for lgbt and of course everyday Jews ?

  3. As a Christian who works for another professional body, I would never consider working for the Law Society. Their prejudice would certainly make me feel at a disadvantage and discriminated against.

  4. I work for an organisation which is extremely committed to equality and diversity and regularly trains on issues such as prejudice and discrimination. I am very open about my faith and have always felt it I am supported and valued as a person of faith in that organisation. There is absolutely no "prejudice" against me as a Christian whatsover. I think the Law Society would be the same.
    If my faith were to lead me to want to act in ways that were disadvantageous to others, that would not be accepted. I think that is how it should be.

  5. That's interesting to know about conducting a conference without a conference venues

  6. I may also think that it is too difficult task to conduct conference without selecting any venue.But this blog tells me everything briefly.<a href=">Meeting Room Facilities</a>