“Gay and lesbian Americans with non-American partners are being forced to leave the United States to be with their partners; a lot are resettling in Britain, where immigration rules give them the same rights as heterosexuals. In contrast, US law does not recognise same-sex relationships for immigration purposes, as that would be Sending The Wrong Message and/or Contrary To God’s Law.
Not everyone’s happy about the liberal tone of Britain’s laws: apparently hundreds of ‘committed Christians’ who run bed-and-breakfasts are up in arms about being legally obliged to extend their hospitality to gays, unmarried couples and followers of the wrong religions:
‘We’ve had a lot of correspondence from Christian B&B operators who don’t want to be forced to accept Satanists, Muslims, gays and even unmarried couples as guests,’ said a Home Office official. ‘Protestants have been writing in saying they shouldn’t have to admit Catholics because they have an issue with their religion, Catholics saying they didn’t want Jews under their roof and objections from followers of other types of faith.’
Dr Don Horrocks of the Evangelical Alliance, which represents about one million Christians in the Anglican, Baptist and other faiths, said : ‘The Equality Act is being called ‘the bed-and-breakfast law’. One B&B worker in the north has told me that he would rather cease operating than have gays staying in his house.”
The quote above is taken from this article in the Guardian. Just in case anyone think that the issues the Episcopal Church and Anglican Communion are struggling with aren’t real and don’t represent responses to real situations.
No matter what happens this summer at General Convention, we all have a lot of work to do building an atmosphere of tolerance between people of different backgrounds. Especially apparently those of us who live in western democratic societies.