Monday, January 18, 2016

Fractional distilation

There's trouble brewing in the Anglican Church; in a somewhat retrograde step, the American wing (Episcopal Church) has had it's wrists firmly slapped for treating LGBT people fairly and equally and committing such heinous crimes as recognising same-sex marriage. The central committee that adjudicates on such matters has decided to punish this rebellious off-shoot by removing their representation from important decision making processes for a period of three years.

I can't help thinking that much like in broader society we are in some way observing a struggle between the forces of reason, progress and modernisation against the forces of tradition and superstition within this organisation. The progressives seem to be taking a line based on reality, reason and experience, i.e. that being gay is simply a human condition (probably genetic) that affects roughly 5-10% of any population, and doesn't actually cause non-gay people any harm or inconvenience (apart from having to put up with Graham Norton mincing around on the telly of course). The traditionalists on the other hand want to stick to the letter of the law, i.e. being gay is an abomination (as it says in their book) and gay people should be treated, at best, as second class citizens, and at worst, well you can probably imagine.

I note that from the voting spreads involved the traditionalists seem to come mostly from the newer (ex-colonial) parts of the Anglican landscape and the rationalists seem to come from the more affluent, richer parts of the world (that aren't competing with Islam). A clearer indication that this is a purely man-made, parochial concoction could not be wished for, i.e. it's nothing to do with real morality or honest ethical enquiry.

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