Archive for Anglican Mainstream

On the Buses

Posted in Politics with tags , , , on April 13, 2012 by telescoper

It seems that while I’m away there’s been a to-do and a hoo-ha about advertisements on London buses. It all started with this rather innocuous advertisement placed by the campaigning organization Stonewall

Apparently this upset a couple of minority religious sects, the overtly homophobic Anglican Mainstream and Core Issues which apparently has a mission to convert happy homosexual people into miserable heterosexual ones by a mixture of coercion, brainwashing and quack psychology. It’s strange that Christian groups like this have such an obsession with homosexuality. Aren’t there more important things for a Christian to be doing, like being kind to the poor and loving your neighbour? Anyway, these folks responded with a bus advert of their own:

Following a number of complaints about the latter, and an intervention by the Mayor Boris Johnson, Transport for London decided to remove the second set of advertisements on the grounds that

We don’t believe these ads reflect TfL’s commitment to a tolerant and inclusive London.

Actually, I think it’s a shame that the Anglican Mainstream adverts were removed. For a start, it’s one of the prices of living in a free society that you have to put up with views you don’t like. More importantly, however, the clumsy and childish nature of the tit-for-tat response from the “religious” fringe to Stoenwall’s pithy original reveals them as the mean-spirited dullards that they are. Their implicit reference to voodoo therapies as “gay cures” will hopefully now receive wider scrutiny in the media, and be exposed for what it is i.e. dogma-inspired pseudoscience. These folk would be more honest if they just took out adverts saying “We hate gay people”, but the disguise is so transparent that’s the message they carry anyway. I am confident publicity campaigns like this are counter-productive in the long run, so let them stand up and be counted. By their slogans shall ye know them.

The Advertising Standards Agency – correctly, in my view – deemed both sets of advertisements acceptable. It was a decision by Transport for London to ban the second set. I don’t think that’s contrary to the spirit of free speech. Anglican Mainstream or any other group has the right to print and distribute literature, organize demonstrations and what have you. It is however, up to newspapers, television companies and radio stations to decide whether they feel comfortable carrying advertisements by organizations promoting messages that run counter to their own code of conduct.