Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/309/12623
Gay Rights Aren't Only For Bishops
GAY RIGHTS campaigner Peter Tatchell, with six other members of Outrage disrupted the Church of England's General Synod on 12 July for 30 minutes over the C of E "withdrawing" the appointment of a gay bishop.
Marc Vallee, Socialist Party LGBT Group
Protesters held up posters and said: "You can see the voice of bigotry and unreason here today... Your ears are deaf and your eyes are blind. You do not witness the suffering of gay and lesbian people."
This action hit the headlines on the TV news and in the papers and put the issue of gay rights and the Church on the agenda once again.
This kind of media stunt, around a single issue, can be useful in raising awareness. But it shouldn't just be about gays having the right to be bishops! It's important that actions are broadened out to highlight the wider discrimination that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people face in society.
Also, the action of a few cannot be a substitute for what is really needed - a mass campaign of LGBT people, taking the arguments to trade union members and workplaces generally, into schools, colleges and youth clubs, into communities and voluntary organisations, to rally support behind the call for true equality.
Taking a broader approach, finding ways to link the battle for LGBT equality to the rights of other sections of working-class people, would enhance the possibilities for success in such a campaign.
Socialist Party LGBT Group Public Meeting
Tuesday 29 July, 7.00pm.
Study Room One, Central YMCA,
112 Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3NQ.
For more info call 020 8988 8777
In The Socialist 19 July 2003:
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International socialist news and analysis