MP blasts ‘radical’ plan to redefine marriage

Mon, 26 Mar 2012

The Government’s “radical” plan to redefine marriage would undermine a “treasured institution”, a Conservative MP has warned.

Julian Brazier, the MP for Canterbury and Whitstable, says he will vote against the plans if they come to the Commons.

Mr Brazier said: “It seems to me this is a very radical measure which will undermine a treasured institution and could have unforeseen consequences.

Agenda

“We shouldn’t allow an institution of this importance to be re-defined simply to meet a rights agenda.

“It’s always been defined in a practical way which is quite restrictive when you think about it – there’s got be one of each sex, you can’t be related, you can’t be married to somebody else.

“If we start to deconstruct it at what point do we stop?”

Consultation

Earlier this month the Westminster Government launched a three-month consultation on its plans to rewrite the definition of marriage.

The consultation asks people if they agree with the move, but it also makes clear that the Government intends to press ahead with its controversial plans.

A grassroots petition supporting the current definition of marriage, organised by the Coalition for Marriage, has attracted more than 300,000 signatures in just over a month.

Redefinition

The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Roman Catholic Church and the UK’s largest Muslim umbrella group have all spoken out against the redefinition of marriage.

Earlier this month the widow of a former deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats resigned from the party after almost 50 years because of its plans to redefine marriage.

In a letter printed in a Scottish national newspaper last week, Lady Joan Johnston said homosexual marriage was the ‘straw that has finally broken the camel’s back’.

Accused

Lady Johnston had been a Lib Dem member since 1964. She made the decision following a recent email from Nick Clegg, in which he claimed one of the party’s achievements will be the first homosexual marriage before 2015.

And UKIP’s openly gay London Regional Chairman has warned that people who believe in traditional marriage could find themselves accused of ‘hate crimes’ if marriage is redefined.

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