The Archbishop of Canterbury and the Archbishop of York have written a letter to the Prime Minister in which they back the rights of Catholic adoption agencies to be exempt from rules of the Equality Act which comes into force in April. The law makes it illegal to withhold services from people on the basis of their sexual orientation. The Catholics believe that it’s their “god-given” right to discriminate against gay people.
But in their letter, the Archbishops make an excellent (if slightly longwinded) point. They say:
It would be deeply regrettable if in seeking, quite properly, better to defend the rights of a particular group not to be discriminated against, a climate were to be created in which, for example, some feel free to argue that members of the government are not fit to hold public office on the grounds of their faith affiliation.
But that wouldn’t be regrettable at all. That’s exactly what we should be striving for. A society where people who believe in sky pixies are considered unsuitable for public office. I’ve said it before, but it’s worth repeating – taking instructions from invisible friends is no way to run a country.