Nick Clegg re-affirms the LibDems’ liberalism
Faith schools should be legally obliged to teach that homosexuality is “normal and harmless”, and gay civil partnerships should be replaced by true marriage, Nick Clegg said last night.
In a pitch for the gay vote unprecedented in its scope, ahead of a general election likely in May, the leader of the Liberal Democrats threw down the gauntlet to his opponents. He called on the Tories, and in particular the Conservative leader David Cameron, who has voted against gay rights, to prove that they really supported full gay equality.
In an interview with The Independent columnist Johann Hari for today’s edition of Attitude magazine, Mr Clegg changed the terms of political debate on what it means to be gay in Britain. The father-of-three detailed a series of proposals, among them:
* Force all schools – including faith schools – to implement anti-homophobia bullying policies and teach that homosexuality is “normal and harmless”.
* Change the law to allow gay men and women the same marital rights as straight couples, including the symbolic right to use the word “marriage” rather than civil partnerships.
* Reverse the ban on gay men being allowed to give blood.
* Guarantee any refugees genuinely fleeing a country because of persecution over their sexual orientation asylum in the UK.
* Review Uganda’s membership of the Commonwealth if its government was to bring in the death penalty for practicing gays.
Update: The BHA has formally responded to this news: http://www.humanism.org.uk/news/view/430
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]Nick Clegg re-affirms the LibDems’ liberalism,