A brilliant piece in today’s Telegraph:
However, it wasn’t just our reaction to the “faeces question” that went down badly with the social workers. We got the distinct impression that they had a real problem with our Christian faith, although our home is not overtly religious and neither are we. Would we want a child placed with us to accompany us to church? Would we put pressure on a child who didn’t want to go? We said that it wouldn’t be a problem because, if a child didn’t want to go to church, one of us would stay at home. We do not believe that you can ram Christianity down anyone’s throat; a child has to make up his or her own mind.
We were quite open in our belief that a child needs a male and a female role model. I said that a girl finds it easier to talk to another woman about periods and sex, for example, while a boy finds it easier to talk to his father.
In our social club we have gay and bisexual people: they’ve had problems with their families and we’ve supported them. If they are not following a faith that says that their lifestyle is wrong, then we shouldn’t and wouldn’t condemn it. We are not homophobic and yet the social worker warned us our views would prejudice our chances of adopting.
At the end of the home assessment, the report concluded that we had too idealistic a view of family life and marriage and that this might prejudice a homosexual child: a gay child would see the way we live and feel that we wouldn’t be able to support him or her in their lifestyle. Why is it there isn’t the same concern about placing a heterosexual child with a homosexual couple who might not be able to support a heterosexual child?
Our home assessment report was put before the adoption panel and we were asked to explain our views. We did so, saying that they were based on our Christian faith. We later received a letter saying that we had been turned down as adoptive parents, that we were not suitable for any of the children they had to place and that we would have to reconsider our views on homosexuality.
This is the problem – the laws that are being introduced have nothing to do with equality and everything to do with pushing forward a particular view of society that must be adhered to by all. Any opinion that dissents is rejected. I hope the Catholic Adoption societies stick by their guns and take this to the wire.
And what about Tony Blair? Well, he could do a huge amount to restore his credibility with the public by resigning over this. It’s clear that he agrees with Ruth Kelly that faith groups need some kind of exemption. So why not, for once, put his career where his mouth is. In one act he would show that he is a man of integrity, that his relationship with Jesus is more important than the rest of his career. Instead of being remembered for Iraq or for the Loans for Peerages scandal we would recall him as the Premier who resigned the highest position in the land over a matter of conscience. Now that would be a legacy worth leaving.