It is interesting to see the anti-religious bigotry being ratcheted up as the Pope's visit gets closer. Facebook is especially entertaining at the moment with those proclaiming their hatred of the Pope and all things Roman Catholic screaming that we Catholics are 'homophobes', 'child torturers', 'paedophiles', when they can actually spell it correctly. Oh yes, and it seems, we 'still burn people at the stake' in one particularly amusingly irrational diatribe.
Of course these people, represented by the likes of Dawkins and Tatchell, proclaim to oppose Catholicism because they are open minded, liberal and tolerant. Course they are, until you disagree with them, then they spit bile and venom in a quite irrational way. Peter Tatchell, talking about irrationality, is a fine one to talk. Following is an article about Tatchell from The Christain Institute:
‘Homosexual rights’ campaigner Peter Tatchell has repeated his call for the age of consent to be lowered to just 14.
His position has been strongly rebuffed in the past, with one commentator saying that sex is for people who can cope with the consequences, “In a word, adults.”
Mr Tatchell’s latest comments echo those made by him last year as well as in a controversial letter he sent to The Guardian in 1997, in which he talked about the “positive nature of some child-adult sexual relationships” and even said he knew cases of nine-year-olds for whom sex with adults “gave them great joy”.
Mr Tatchell’s recent remarks feature on an American forum website, Big Think, during a month in which the site published debate articles about “dangerous ideas”.
The ‘gay rights’ activist claimed that: “Despite what the puritans and sex-haters say, underage sex is mostly consenting, safe, and fun”.
He believes that laws which put the age of consent at 16 are harmful to teenagers. “They signal that a young person is not capable of making a rational, moral choice about when to have sex”, he said.
In an online article in 2009, Mr Tatchell wrote: “An age of consent of 14 might be more realistic and reasonable than 16.
“If sex at 14 is consensual, and no one is hurt or complains, is criminalisation in the public interest?”
He added: “Some teens, and even young children, innocently and spontaneously explore and experiment at an early age. In most cases this causes them no harm at all.”
But commentator David Lindsay, writing on The Daily Telegraph’s website, slammed these remarks saying “sex is for people who can cope with the consequences, physical and otherwise. In a word, adults”.
In an outspoken letter to The Guardian in 1997 Mr Tatchell went even further, saying several of his friends had had sex with adults when they were aged between nine and 13.
“None feel they were abused. All say it was their conscious choice and gave them great joy”, he said.
Mr Tatchell went on to say that while “it may be impossible to condone paedophilia, it is time society acknowledged the truth that not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive and harmful”.
The letter, dated 26 June 1997, is reproduced in full below:
ROS Coward (Why Dares to Speak says nothing useful, June 23) thinks it is “shocking” that Gay Men’s Press has published a book, Dares To Speak, which challenges the assumption that all sex involving children and adults is abusive. I think it is courageous.
The distinguished psychologists and anthropologists cited in this book deserve to be heard. Offering a rational, informed perspective on sexual relations between younger and older people, they document examples of societies where consenting inter-generational sex is considered normal, beneficial and enjoyable by old and young alike.
Prof Gilbert Herdt points to the Sambia tribe of Papua New Guinea, where all young boys have sex with older warriors as part of their initiation into manhood. Far from being harmed, Prof Herdt says the boys grow up to be happy, well-adjusted husbands and fathers.
The positive nature of some child-adult sexual relationships is not confined to non-Western cultures. Several of my friends – gay and straight, male and female – had sex with adults from the ages of nine to 13. None feel they were abused. All say it was their conscious choice and gave them great joy.
While it may be impossible to condone paedophilia, it is time society acknowledged the truth that not all sex involving children is unwanted, abusive and harmful.
But then again Tatchell has always been a self-obsessed publicity seeker, a self made man who is in love with his creator. When the best that opponents can do is trundle out a loony like Tatchell, you know they are on a sticky wicket.
Of course one thing the Pope's visit has done is to highlight the number of small minded, mean spirited puritans we still have in this country. The next Oliver Cromwell is just around the corner sadly.
I remember the first Ulster Protestant I discussed politics with claiming that I couldn't be a patriot because I owed my allegiance to a foreign state, the Vatican. I found it quite laughable at the time. But in 2010 I think I would prefer to owe my allegiance to the Vatican than to the United Kingdom.