So it turns out religious organisations, who always duck out of equality legislation because it goes against their ‘firmly held beliefs’ – or ‘fhb’s – are getting a big old gay makeover that will include scatter cushions, perfumed candles from Diptyque and posters of Donna Summer, Madonna and drawings by Tom of Finland. There may even be stuff from Habitat.
Yes indeed all you archbishops and mullahs and rabbis, the gays are coming to move amongst you for the European Commission, who we have a whole lot of time for, have decreed and decided then decreed some more that the UK government shouldn’t have been so soft on them god botherers when they banged on about how employing the lesbians and the gays would compromise their fhbs. Though molesting choirboys, strangely, doesn’t.
It was the National Secular Society that sparked the Commission to flick through the notes attached to the UK’s equality legislation (well done those people!) and come to the conclusion that under the terms of the exemption, religious groups were allowed to refuse a position to a homosexual employee ‘so as to avoid conflicting with the strongly held religious convictions of a significant number of the religion’s followers’. Now those followers can fuck the hell off.
‘If a significant number of followers of an organised religion didn’t like it, there was no protection for a gay employee,’ reckons Keith Porteous-Wood, of the National Secular Society. ‘Now the government must demonstrate its commitment to equality, rather than continuing to jump to the church’s tune.’
Many hissy fits among the wearers of fancy robes and hats and their sensibly shod followers are expected.