The Corner

The one and only.



I’m reluctant to wade into the dispute between Kathryn and Andrew re Catholics and gay adoption, but here goes. Andrew has a certain logic on his side: if you’re going to make it illegal to discriminate against gays in the matter of child adoption, then the law should apply to everyone. But Andrew’s argument that otherwise one is defenseless against demands by Muslims for special treatment strikes me as very dubious and the feeble braggadocio by the opportunist Cameron that this is part of the rollback against multiculturalism is even more desperate than his usual utterances.

For a start, simply as a matter of reality, whether or not we’re all cool with gays and don’t go to church except for elderly relatives’ funerals, the life that most people lead in “secular” western societies owes more to the Judeo-Christian inheritance than to Islam or Buddhism or anything else. Therefore, to argue that two thousand years of conventional Catholic belief in this area is equivalent to Muslim views on wife-beating or polygamy is not a rebuke to multiculturalism but merely a manifestation of it – an equality of exclusion similar to that adopted by the French state when, in order to ban the veil from French schools, they also banned crucifixes.

Furthermore, as a practical proposition, it will do nothing to arrest the creeping Sharia already evident in much of the western world. The Catholic church will wind up withdrawing from the adoption business, and thus will bef those small remorseless losses to civil society. But Islam will just do what it wants to do anyway. Surveys of Muslim communities in Ontario, France and other western jurisdictions show polygamy is accepted de facto, and recent rulings by Britains pensions ministry reveal that its also acknowledged de jure, albeit tentatively. On the other hand, by the polices own admission, there have been at least 120 honor killings in Britain which the constabulary declined to look at too closely on the grounds of cultural sensitivity. The fact that putting Catholics out of the adoption business should be the priority in a week when British imams have been secretly filmed urging homosexuals be hurled off cliffs shows that the real issue remains not any privilege (in Andrews word) to particular faiths accorded by law but the privilege accorded to one religion by multiculti cravenness.

I dont know what the answer is here, and Im not sure there is one. But the idea that this stand by David Cameron is some kind of rebuff to the Islamist hollowing out of Britain is ludicrous. If the issue is, as Andrew says, one of privilege, then it privileges the pieties of hyper-secularist progressivism to the exclusion of all else and its into that vacuum that radical Islam has poured, in Britain and in many other places.