Church of England Newspaper defends 'Gaystapo' article

The Church of England Newspaper has defended the publication of an article that compares gay rights campaigners to Nazis, saying the author has "pertinent views".

In the column, Alan Craig, a former London Councillor, referred to a number of high-profile legal cases where Christians claim to have been penalised for their views on homosexuality.

He wrote: "the UK's victorious Gaystapo are now on a roll. Their gay-rights stormtroopers take no prisoners as they annex our wider culture, and hotel owners, registrars, magistrates, doctors, counsellors, and foster parents … find themselves crushed under the pink jackboot.

"Thanks especially to the green light from a permissive New Labour government, the gay Wehrmacht is on its long march through the institutions and has already occupied the Sudetenland social uplands of the Home Office, the educational establishment, the politically-correct police. Following a plethora of equalities legislation, homosexuals are now protected and privileged by sexual orientation regulations and have achieved legal equality by way of civil partnerships. But it's only 1938 and Nazi expansionist ambitions are far from sated."

However, Craig told the Guardian that he was distinguishing between the leadership of gay rights groups and what he referred to as "ordinary gay people".

"I've nothing against ordinary gay people but the leadership, well I stick by my word Gaystapo. It is bullying. I oppose bullying and hatred in all its forms. There is no justification for the bullying or intimidation of gays and that has been rectified in law, but we've moved on to a new game. We're now seeing these attitudes of intolerance they accuse their opponents of."

The paper's editor, Colin Blakely, also defended the "Gaystapo" article. He said: "[Craig] has got views that are pertinent on this issue. I was on holiday that week and if I had seen it I would have asked him to tone the language down somewhat. We're getting a lot of correspondence on this column. He has not won a lot of support with readers and we're publishing letters. We want people to engage with the issue."

The article comes as Christian guesthouse owners Peter and Hazelmary Bull are in court this week trying to overturn a ruling that they broke the law by refusing to allow a gay couple to stay in a double room.

Date: 08 November 2011


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