Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Tagged under:

Civil & Religious Liberty Crushed

Ian Major sees yesterday's ruling against Ashers as a draconian measure that can only be detrimental to civil and religious liberties. Ian Major was a pastor to prisoners in Northern Ireland - part-time from 1980, full-time from 1991-1998. He is a member of his local Baptist Church.

'Civil and religious liberty are natural and fundamental rights that must be promoted and defended by all who claim the title of Loyalist (From William Mitchell’s Principles of Loyalism document, 2002)'.


The Ashers outcome should be a wake up call to anyone who values freedom of conscience. No doubt many atheists are laughing today, for it's cheap and easy to oppress Christians.

But ask yourself if you were the baker, would you bake a cake promoting something you held to be immoral, or even just a bad idea?
"Support the Tory Cuts"?

"Ulster is British"?

"Lower the Age of Consent to Nine"?

If you were a gay baker, should you be forced to bake a cake with the slogan, "Oppose Gay Marriage"?

Ha, Ha, it's only the Christians - but the principle established yesterday is a weapon that can be used against anybody. Good to see some atheists, like Fionola Meredith in the Belfast Telegraph, recognise the threat.

Remember the lesson of history:


First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—

Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—

Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—

Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me'

Pastor Martin Niemöller (1892–1984)



Civil and Religious Liberty were crushed yesterday - as I'm sure my friend Billy Mitchell would have recognised.

30 comments :

AM said...

Ian,

welcome to TPQ with the first piece from you to feature amongst our articles.

DaithiD said...

Maybe they should of stuck a sign in the window, no blacks, no dogs,no Irish , no gays to avoid this situation?
As a Catholic I know we have a way to go on this matter, but I wouldnt stand over the right to bigotry, dressed up as freedom of religion. There is no right to be a baker either, either serve the entire community or dont be a baker.

larry hughes said...

Once again sectarian tribalism is influencing stances here. As someone born into a Catholic background but who never cared much for any of it I back the baker 500%. I don't care if they are DUP and that the Paisley Taliban ran amok over everyone else here for decades. On this score the baker is correct. I would love to go into the bakery in my Celtic top, order a big jam role for the homosexual agenda campaign and CONGRATULATE Ashers on their stance. Homosexual equality campaign is dictatorial and another version of the thought police.

Henry JoY said...

Ian couldn't they have put something bitter in the cake? :)

I'm reminded of a story told by a now deceased member of my own family who, as part of bettering himself, struggled to open a small shop in the 60's. Established Unionist competitors in the same town and sector did everything they could to frustrate his plans including canvassing many of their co-religionists Belfast wholesalers, with whom they had long established commercial relationships, not to supply the 'Papist'.

However a Christian man who was a sales rep for one of the leading Belfast wholesalers at the time broke the embargo and not only opened a line of supply for my relative but he also became a mentor and champion of the new business. Among the oft quoted pieces of advice he gave for commercial success was to support all local causes ... "Sean" he said "business is business and when someone local comes in collecting, always put something in the tin ... even if they're collecting to build a new wing to hell!"

larry hughes said...

http://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/oireachtas/no-surrogacy-legislation-before-election-says-kenny-1.2219658

marty said...

Looks like god was having a wank or something on that judgement day,

Wolfsbane said...

Anthony, thanks for the welcome.

DaithiD, you say Ashers were bigoted and ought to be obliged to make the slogan. You didn't suggest what you thought a baker should do in the other scenarios I offered:
'But ask yourself if you were the baker, would you bake a cake promoting something you held to be immoral, or even just a bad idea?
"Support the Tory Cuts"?
"Ulster is British"?
"Lower the Age of Consent to Nine"?
If you were a gay baker, should you be forced to bake a cake with the slogan, "Oppose Gay Marriage"?'

The local gay activist had the same problem last night on Nolan. Peter Tatchell, however, had the consistency to say everyone must be forced to publish/print any lawful slogan, however distasteful they found it. He is being fair, but he has abandoned respect for the rights of conscience.

The best the local gay activist could eventually come up with was that businesses should put up a sign saying they do not do religious or political comments.

Really? So a printing business cannot produce religious or political pamphlets as part of their business if they want to avoid printing material with messages they find offensive?

"Support the Tory Cuts"?
"Ulster is British"?
"Lower the Age of Consent to Nine"
"Vote SF"
"Vote DUP"
You as a printer would have no problem printing any of those?

Or do you hold the sacralist position, that whatever you think is moral/good must be imposed on everyone else, and they have no right to dissent? So Gay Marriage is moral/good and Ashers cannot refuse to print a slogan supporting it; but the Tory cuts are immoral/bad and you have the right to refuse to print a slogan supporting it?

DaithiD said...

Wolfsbane, nobody who thinks seriously on this thinks its not an area replete with difficulties.Another interesting one on that theme is “Should shopkeepers of served British soldiers in republican areas?” (I have an answer for it, but its interesting to think about). If the Ashers were to have one, the implications would of been terrible, there are more anti-social religions we need to apply these ruling too.

Wolfsbane said...

DaithiD said:
'nobody who thinks seriously on this thinks its not an area replete with difficulties.'

So it's OK to force Ashers to comply, but it's too difficult to decide about the other cases I offered???

'Another interesting one on that theme is “Should shopkeepers of served British soldiers in republican areas?” (I have an answer for it, but its interesting to think about).'

The law - which the Ashers case was about - says nothing about one's membership of the Armed forces, as far as I'm aware. I assume the soldiers could not have claimed unlawful discrimination.

But if one had been black, he could have won the case - as apparently the 'British soldier' justification for refusal would not be accepted, only the actual nature of the person refused. The CNR bakery would be guilty of racial discrimination.

Or if any of the soldiers could present themselves as Unionists they could not be refused service, no matter their Army uniform. This is the principle you are arguing for!

'If the Ashers were to have one, the implications would of been terrible, there are more anti-social religions we need to apply these ruling too.'

So you are taking the sacralist position - your ideology must be accepted by all. Those you deem 'anti-social' are to be hammered.

So much for an Ireland open to dissenters!

DaithiD said...

Ahh you wrote this article?
Lots of noise but my position was stated at the outset, each and everypoint you mentioned : same answer.
Thats Britsh law for you Wolfsbane. Well if you are a pastor, you serve fags their cream horns so your sheep dont have to. And smile about it.

Wolfsbane said...

DaithiD said:

'Ahh you wrote this article?'

Yes, when I changed from responder to articles to author of articles, I thought it best to use my real name.

'Lots of noise but my position was stated at the outset, each and everypoint you mentioned : same answer.'

But your solution -'Maybe they should of stuck a sign in the window, no blacks, no dogs,no Irish , no gays to avoid this situation?' - would be illegal (as well as immoral), so not a solution.

So please answer the questions with a lawful solution.

'Thats Britsh law for you Wolfsbane.'

Yes, and I deplore the court's view of the law. To me the law is clear enough, protecting the person but not the slogan.

'Well if you are a pastor, you serve fags their cream horns so your sheep dont have to. And smile about it.'

No sure what you mean. When I served as a pastor I ministered to all sorts of people - terrorists, thieves, murderers, paedophiles. There a only two sorts of people really - repentant sinners and unrepentant sinners. Christians and non-Christians (I use 'Christian' in the Biblical sense).

Now that I'm an ordinary bloke in the pew, I do the same. We love sinners and seek their conversion - we do not condone their sin.

DaithiD said...

Ill duck out of this one Ian, maybe im too sarcastic, the sign suggestion (without the gays part) has a special resonance with the Irish in England, its was not a serious suggestion at all. God saves the Queens and all that.

Wolfsbane said...

OK,DaithiD. Thanks for the input anyway.

alwayssunny said...

Remember the lesson of history:


First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—

Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—

Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—

Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me'

Pastor Martin Niemöller (1892–1984)

Does this not apply to the gay men in this situation. First we made it ok to not serve gay people...

larry hughes said...

Alwayssunny
no one refused to serve the gay.

Robert said...

Larry,

'no one refused to serve the gay.'

A fact that seems to be forgotten in the stampede to throw the Christians to the legal lions. The only civil liberty backed by the law owed to Gareth Lee was the right to take his custom somewhere else. If Gareth or anyone else wishes to put their reproductive organs into a dietary tract.. bully for them. Keep it in the bedroom don't bring it to the bakery or any other public place to be forced on others who might view the practice as manifestly inappropriate.

larry hughes said...

Robert

completely with you on that. I had a short period of empathy with the homosexual cause. However we are in danger of permitting 4 per-cent of the population, containing the weird and the 'wonderful', to dictate social mores to us all. It will just be the beginning too, they have proven to be in yer face and bitchy for some time. I thankfully snapped out of my miss-placed sentimentality and took off the rose tinted specs.

Religious orders may have fouled up pretty bad and the existence of God is questionable, but Christian values have merit. The homosexual crusade has shown a lack of tolerance for anyone else. I repeat, they are 4 per-cent.

Gays say civil partnership is not enough. Really? Are they expecting to marry in a church? Hardly, they want the 'right' to kids under the law.

alwayssunny said...

Alwayssunny
no one refused to serve the gay.
I'm pretty sure they accepted his order then phoned him up a few days later and said they couldn't fill his order. So they clearly refused to serve the gay as you call him get the facts right before you tell me I am wrong

larry hughes said...

alwayssunny

they refused the message...using two kiddies tv characters to promote sodomy. FACT.

larry hughes said...

alwayssunny

they refused the message...using two kiddies tv characters to promote sodomy. FACT.

Wolfsbane said...

Larry, Well said.

Here's a fine article in the Irish press that exposes what is going on:

http://www.independent.ie/opinion/columnists/david-quinn/only-a-no-vote-can-keep-biological-parents-at-the-constitutions-centre-31243283.html

AM said...

Wolfsbane, I don't know if it is a fine article because I have not read it. And I know you gave us a fine one thru F Meredith (I can't spell her first name from memory and think Robert ventured where I will not - and got it wrong!!) But if it is a fine article it will be his first.

larry hughes said...

Wolfsbane

If the vote is NO it would not surprise me in the least if a re-run is ordered. 'Democratic' Ireland has 'prior' in that area.

The article you posted is near enough for me. It will take some time, but if this goes through, and I have an awful feeling it will, the churches may have much needed life breathed into them in the decades to come. When we start seeing countless groups of two 'camp' males wheeling little kiddies around town centres and shopping malls and bitching in courts demanding their 'right' to adopt society may finally kop itself on.

Wolfsbane said...

Anthony, David Quinn no doubt would write a lot I disagree with (me being a Calvinist and he a Catholic!), but he is clear-sighted on this.


Melanie McDonagh, another Irish commentator, also sees the point:
http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/coffeehouse/2015/05/the-gay-cake-case-highlights-a-new-intolerance-developing-in-ireland/

Robert said...

Anthony,

'I can't spell her first name from memory and think Robert ventured where I will not - and got it wrong!!'

Despite my great skill in the art of misspelling I actually captured Fionola Meredith correctly on this occasion having being prompt to check by your comment.

My long tenure as Mayor of Wrongville has alas ended - I invest you with your badge of office!

AM said...

Robert,

LOL. I refrained from copying yours because it looked wrong. But it is one of those names I will never get right even when it is spelt right in front of me.

Apologies not that you are looking any.

Wolfsbane said...

Larry, yes, real Christians shape up under oppression - the fair-weather ones head for cover.

And as you say, society itself may eventually catch on. I hope so, for our both our nations' sake.

larry hughes said...

Wolfsbane

Ian Paisley Jnr says Prince Charles laying the groundwork for Ireland back in the Commonwealth. Might you concede Irishness then?

Wolfsbane said...

I doubt it, Larry. I need to be convinced our civil and religious liberties would be safer in a UI, and that corruption in Government would be no worse than it is as we are.

Not sure the ROI is moving in that direction - I have a problem with the Irish Tricolour, but changing that for a Rainbow flag is no solution! ;)

larry hughes said...

Wolfsbane.

I was replying to you and instead decided to submit it as a short article.