I’ve been head-composing a post about Ruth Kelly for a while, but Butterflies and Wheels puts it far better than anything I came up with:
It’s a bit like belonging to a Nazi party, or the KKK, or the God Hates Fags gang, and then trying to claim not only that of course one’s belonging to that organization doesn’t in the least mean one can’t “speak up” for the rights of Jews or blacks or gays, why on earth would it, but also that even asking the question is absurd and outrageous and indignation-worthy. It’s a bit like that, but to many observers it doesn’t look like that, because we’ve been so relentlessly trained to think of religious beliefs and teachings as in some profound way entirely different from political beliefs. But why would they be? Because it’s taboo to challenge them, that’s why – and that’s a terrible reason.
If someone said “I personally want to let children set fire to their teachers, but I won’t let that affect my judgement in parliament. I’ll just abstain from any votes about teachers, that’s all” would you make them education minister?
There’s no difference between the two other than that the pyromaniacs haven’t spent 2000 years convincing brainwashing everybody into not arguing with them. The pyromaniacs haven’t spent 2000 years brainwashing everybody into not arguing with them, but the underlying argument is the same.1
I don’t want somebody who thinks homosexuality is a sin having anything to do with the making of laws. They try to do things like this. I don’t care why she thinks it, or how hard she tries to avoid the topic by abstaining from votes; there’s no excuse for bigotry.
- edited for hyperbole [↩]