Charles Moore has written an excellent column in today’s Telegraph, describing the country’s obsession with equality as ‘mad, bad and dangerous’.
In a week where equality is going to be at the top of the political agenda – it’s worth remembering that the concept of equality is not the same as homogeneity. To treat people equally does not equate to treating them absolutely identically, regardless of circumstances. As a mother of four children between the ages of 8 and 5 months, I undisputedly love them and treat them equally. According to the principles of equality laid down by advocates of gay marriage, treating someone equally is treating them in exactly the same way as one would treat another.
That clearly doesn’t work – should I treat my 8 year old in the same way as the baby? Should I have bought exactly the same Christmas presents for every single child, not taking their age into account? Is it unfair to have bought the baby a symbolic cuddly teething blanket and the eight year old a more expensive present? Or should I ensure that all the children are bought the same presents for their respective birthdays, so they all get say, a wooden railway for their second birthday because that’s what the eldest child had for hers?
Treating people identically regardless of circumstances is the cause of great injustice. We don’t, for example, allocate benefits or state help to people identically, without first taking their situation and individual circumstances into account.
The Equal Marriage Bill is unjust and perpetuates the very inequality it is supposed to remedy. It treats ‘gay marriages’ in an entirely separate way to heterosexual ones, in that a straight couple has recourse to divorce on the grounds of non-consumation and adultery, the concepts of which do not apply to gay couples. A straight couple can divorce due to non-consummation, inherently proving that marriage was ordained for the procreation of children – why else does the law recognise the sexual element?
If ‘gay marriage’ solves inequality, why does it then propose a version of marriage that still does not meet the standards of behaviour required by a straight couple. The answer is that cannot, because ‘gay marriage’ is in itself a legal fiction and impossible under natural law.
The picture says it all. Justice is ensuring that children have a legal framework that recognises that they have a physical and biological relationship to their birth parents and that supports the rights of children to be brought up, supported, nurtured and loved by their biological parents. Justice does not deny the rights and needs of a vulnerable child in favour of the desires of a set of adults.