Blogging from the Highlands of Scotland
'From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step' - Diderot

Wednesday 6 October 2004

EU Justice Commissioner - "homosexuality is a sin"

I thought when I first came across this report that it must be some kind of sick joke. But no, it seems that the recently-named new Justice Commissioner of the European Union really did say this.

I urge anyone who reads this to send a protest direct to the EU, using the 'Your direct line' link under the links section entitled 'Interact with the EU' from the EU main index page. This is the text of a message I have just sent:

New Justice Commissioner - Rocco Buttiglione

I have just read, with shock, the remarks made by Signor Buttiglione that homosexuality is a sin; his further statement that the rights of homosexuals should be defended on the same basis as the rights of all other European citizens is little comfort as I find it difficult to believe that he will be able, entirely, to separate his own deeply-held personal views from any aspect of his official duties, specially as I read that he tried (and failed) to remove from the Charter of Fundamental Rights non-discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.

I am well aware that there are strongly-held opposing views on various aspects of matters relating to homosexuals (whether they should be allowed to marry or not, for example), but to have a man such as Signor Buttiglione in a position so important as Justice Commissioner is both deeply upsetting and disquieting (or even 'terrifying', and I do not exaggerate) for the future.

Has this person been confirmed in the position he was nominated for? If so, why?

Thank you for your urgent comments.

I have on occasion sent messages to the EU in the past and although one always receives an automated acknowledgement, I have also somewhat later always received a fuller reply in addition, although whether anything actually happens as a result of such comments is not known, but if one doesn't write about such matters then one can't complain later.

Read about Signor Buttiglione and his controversial views on various matters, ranging from homosexuality to immigration, in this BBC report.

UPDATE: (Friday 8OCT04 13.30 BST) EU Parliament President Josep Borrell has entered the fray, in an interview given to a French radio station, stating - "Quite frankly, as a Spanish citizen, I wouldn't want to have a justice minister who thinks that homosexuality is a sin and that women should stay at home and have children under the protection of their husbands. I don't think that at this moment in time we can have such people in charge of justice - especially justice... Perhaps if he were in charge of beetroots, it wouldn't be so serious." Well done; it is good to hear someone senior speaking out against this nonsense, although I tend to doubt it will do any good in this instance.

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