Hilary White, Rome Correspondent

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UK roundup: Oxford says male students can wear skirts to exams, others

Hilary White, Rome Correspondent

Oxford University caves to gay activist pressure: Male students may wear skirts to exams

OXFORD – Oxford University has acceded to the demands of the university’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer Society (LGBTQ Soc) that male students be allowed to wear women’s clothes to exams and other formal occasions. The decision overturns centuries of tradition at one of the world’s oldest academic institutions, in which students are required to dress formally to sit exams.

The academic dress code is in effect a uniform, called “subfusc,” and includes an academic gown, cap, and white bow tie for men and a black ribbon for women. It is traditionally worn at chapel services, formal meals as well as exams and academic assessments as well as matriculation. Before the August 4 decision, male students were required to wear a dark suit with black shoes, white shirt and collar, under their gowns.

The new rules have abolished the rules requiring students to wear clothing specific to their sex. Jess Pumphrey, LGBTQ Soc’s executive officer, told The Oxford Student newspaper, “In future there will be no need for transgender students to cross-dress to avoid being confronted by invigilators or disciplined during their exam.”

The Daily Telegraph quoted a university spokesman saying, “The regulations have been amended to remove any reference to gender, in response to concerns raised by Oxford University Student Union that the existing regulations did not serve the interests of transgender students.”


Green Party councilor faces ‘Vicious’ and ‘totalitarian’ backlash for support for traditional marriage

BRIGHTON – A Christian Green Party councilor has decried as “vicious” the “totalitarian” backlash by the party against her opposition to redefining marriage. Christina Summers was the only member of the Brighton and Hove City Council not to vote in favor of lobbying the government to change the definition of marriage to include homosexual partners, the Christian Institute reports.

She describes herself as a “devout Christian” and said that her vote was a matter of conscience. She says she supports same sex relationships and civil partnerships but not “gay marriage”. Speaking at a council meeting, she said, “When you touch marriage, you’re touching family and you’re hitting at the very heart of God and I have an enormous problem with that.”

“I do not agree that disagreeing with same-sex marriage is disagreeing with equality at all,” she said. “I feel that marriage is about a relationship between a man and a woman together in a relationship and about procreation and family.”

The party has said that by having voted against “equal civil marriage - a long-held and firm policy of the Green Party,” Summers may have “compromised her signed declaration” under which she was elected.

A party spokesman said, “Following the recent vote by Councillor Summers on equal marriage, Green councillors met on Monday evening and have requested that the party’s official inquiry process be initiated to ensure a fair, speedy and transparent outcome.”

The party does not have the power to remove Summers as a city councilor or to expel her from the party, but may exclude her from membership of the Green group, which has minority control of the council. 

Scottish civil servants concerned about religious freedom if gay ‘marriage’ passes: leaked e-mail

EDINBURGH – BBC Scotland has seen an e-mail sent between Scottish civil servants that shows Scottish National Party ministers are concerned about the far-reaching effect on civil freedoms of a proposed redefinition of marriage. They express concerns that “gay marriage,” will impact the freedom of citizens, particularly religious ministers, to object to and refuse to participate unless substantial changes are made to the UK’s Equalities Act 2010.

The email says that the government “may announce” that they will proceed with same-sex “marriage,” both for civil and religious ceremonies, but not until the Act is “amended to provide full protection for individual celebrants who are opposed to same-sex ceremonies, even if their religious body has decided to opt in to carrying out such ceremonies”.

“[T]he government recognises the need to provide appropriate protections for some in Scottish society who are against same sex marriage,” reads the e-mail.

“It is likely that our ministers would not wish to commence any Scottish Act introducing same-sex marriage until the amendment to the Equality Act is in place.”

The BBC quoted a Home Office spokesman saying, “We are working closely with the Scottish government to consider whether any specific changes to the Equality Act, or other legislation, may be required.

“We will produce conclusions on our own consultation - covering England and Wales - by the end of the year.”

Prime Minister David Cameron has recently reiterated his determination to install “gay marriage” by 2013, despite dire warnings from his own ministers that the push is causing the party to hemorrhage members and is likely to end Conservative hopes in upcoming elections.

Gloucester City Council apologizes to Christians for banning tracts

GLOUCESTER – The Christian Legal Centre reports that a Christian group has received an apology from the Gloucester City Council, saying that they had been fully within their rights to hand out religious leaflets and that it had been wrong to try to stop them.

The apology comes after the city had attempted to stop members of ten city churches from handing out tracts during “Bible Day Gloucester”. The Council claimed that the group had breached city by-laws, but later apologized following the threat of legal action.

Roland Parsons, a spokesman for Christians in Gloucester, said the group is “delighted that the council has seen sense”.

“Christians in Gloucester maintain that we have the basic freedom in Britain to hand out literature of a political or religious opinion to any other citizen in Gloucester,” he said.

“We also refuse to live in a totalitarian regime where political and religious opinion is banned. The city MP would not have been treated in this way if he and his colleagues were handing out political message literature at Gloucester Cross.”

Andrea Minichiello Williams, CEO of the Christian Legal Centre, which supported the group, commented, “This is a victory for free speech. Gloucester city council is to be commended for reversing their decision to ban the distribution of Christian literature.”


New homosexualist pressure group demands “visible gay sexuality” in schools

LONDON – The group Diversity Role Models was founded a year ago to further the homosexualist political agenda in British schools. The “anti-bullying charity” has said that homosexuality should be made more visible and therefore “more human”.

The group recently announced the appointment of gay activist Simon Blake as the new chairman, who comes to the job after fifteen years as a leading abortion lobbyist with Brook, the Family Planning Association, the Sex Education Forum and the National Children’s Bureau.

Blake told PinkNews, “Evidence shows we will continue to breed bullying and fear unless gay sexuality becomes visible in schools. We need openness in the playground, in the classroom and in the behaviour of teachers.

“Make sexuality human and it becomes an issue of fairness – something young people feel passionately about.”

The adoption of “anti-bullying” policies by schools and governments http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/bullying-in-the-name-of-anti-bullying/ has been a major step forward by the homosexualist political movement to quash all opposition. Having established in the public mind that homosexual teenagers are suffering inordinately from “homophobic bullying,” policies are being put in place by compliant governments in Britain, Canada and the US to ensure that schools will comply with the program to normalize the homosexual lifestyle.

Referring to the movement’s legal gains, Blake issued a thinly veiled threat to anyone in schools who might still dare to disapprove.

“People have their different personal beliefs about sex and sexuality, but the law is clear about gay sexuality. It is vital in a modern society that young people learn that bullying is wrong and that diversity is not something to be afraid of.

“Schools should be teaching what the law is, what people think about sexuality and how young people can protect themselves as they start to enjoy how they feel, and DRM helps them do exactly that.”

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