Cardinal Keith O’Brien has said teachers will be banned from “promoting” the “traditional” view of marriage if gay marriage is made lawful in Scotland — as usual though, he hasn’t offered any evidence to back up his claims.
O’Brien said: ‘It is clear that Scotland’s schools will be banned from promoting a traditional understanding of marriage if same-sex marriage becomes law.
‘This means reassurances offered by the Scottish government that schools and churches will be protected have been utterly hollow.
‘If they enact same-sex marriage legislation there is no question that the work of Catholic schools and parishes will be impaired, undermined and damaged.’
It should be pointed out that the Cardinal has made a huge error, whether deliberate or not, in implying “It is clear that Scotland’s schools will be banned from promoting a tradition understanding of marriage.”
No where in the legislation is there such a ban, and at no point does the legislation mandate the teaching of same-sex marriage at the expense of the erroneously called “traditional” view of marriage. This is a leap that is not supported by logic, but it is the kind of running jump the Cardinal has made several times before.
O’Brien faced fierce criticism when earlier this year he compared gay marriage to legalizing slavery, quoted inaccurate and debunked research that he said showed children need heterosexual parents, repeated lies offered by the American right-wing, and advanced that religion would be harmed by children being taught about gay marriage in schools. This line of attack is no more credible now than it was then.
At the most, teachers will have to teach reality: that civil marriage is open to gay couples as well as straight couples. This requires no political discourse or even religious opinion, only the facts.
Scotland, like England, is currently working its way toward legalizing marriage equality, something that despite religious protections being built into the legislation, religious conservatives have reacted most stridently against.
The English marriage equality consultation enters its final week this week.