School children as young as 12 who disagree with same-sex marriage have been branded as “Nazis” and “bigots”, a senior Roman Catholic official has said.
John Deighan said there is an increasing level of ill will against “very young people” because of their views about such issues.
Speaking in Brussels earlier this week Mr Deighan warned: “People are increasingly being subjected to manipulation by what I would call the equality lobby.”
His comments came at a meeting in the European Parliament which considered how churchgoers are treated in Europe.
Mr Deighan, the Roman Catholic Church’s parliamentary officer in Scotland, warned: “There is a level of hostility which is building up even against very young people.
“I know, for example, of children in Scotland, including my own 12–year–old child, who have been branded as ‘Nazis’ and ‘bigots’ because they have dared to disagree with the idea of same–sex marriage.”
Last month Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg got into hot water over a remark in a draft speech that opponents of same-sex marriage are “bigots”.
The speech was circulated in advance to the media, but 90 minutes later his aides tried to cover up the gaffe by issuing a revised version without the jibe.
A poll afterwards found that 50 per cent of people believed describing someone as a “bigot” because they disagreed with your views about same-sex marriage was like bullying.