frgavin on November 4th, 2012

By Fr Joe Borg, Times of Malta

Cardinal Keith O’Brien, the most prominent figure of the Catholic Church in Scotland, has just been named as Bigot of the Year at the annual Stonewall Awards. The gay, lesbian and bisexual charity conferred the award on O’Brien for his strong opposition the legalisation of same sex marriages.

As is to be expected, the Church in Scotland is incensed. A spokesperson said that the award by Stonewall “reveals the depth of their intolerance and their willingness to attack and demean those who don’t share their views.” Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond, with whom Cardinal O’Brien crossed swords on many occasions because of same-sex marriage, said that the gay lobby was “clearly wrong to describe Scotland’s cardinal in these terms, and in any case should reflect on whether pejorative titles like this do anything to enhance their cause.”

Andrew Brown, the well-known blogger of The Guardian wrote that “if all opponents of gay marriage are branded bigots, the word loses its force and risks becoming a jokey badge of pride.” This is quite true considering that over six hundred thousand persons in Great Britain have this year signed a petition urging the British government not to change the definition of marriage. Are they all bigots because they want the definition of marriage to remain that which has characterised human history that is the union of a man and a woman? This support for this definition of marriage is not done arbitrarily. It is a reflection of the complementary natures of men and women.

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