Newsnight Scotland

I was on Newsnight Scotland last night discussing some of the issues that arise from the possibility that the UK government is about to consult on allowing Civil Partnerships to be celebrated in church and with religious elements in England and Wales. Also about the fact that the Scottish Government appears to be dragging its heels and refusing the same kind of conversation.

There’s a nice short clip of me in St Mary’s and then a studio interview.

See here for the BBC iplayer link. The segment starts at 9 minutes 22 seconds.


  1. Great stuff! Compares favourably with Fr.Gadgetvicar’s Holy Week appearance a few years back although I’m not sure if, personally, I’d rank it up there with Italian Vanity Fair 😉

    Good to see the LGBT Network and Stonewall too – and encouraging that, unlike what would have happened a mere five or six years ago, the BBC didn’t feel the need to rope in some spokesman for a homophobic lobby in the interests of ‘balance’.

    • Thanks Ryan

      On your last point, I think its interesting that in those five or six years, the opinion polls have been overturned. (That’s what John Curtice was telling us). The BBC can deal differently with the issue now because its not just a hypothetical issue that holy people are arguing about but a mainstream issue that the majority want but which politicians are wary of.

      I took the view a few years ago that campaigning for these issues was more fruitful within society generally rather than simply going over the same ground again and again in the church. I’m proud to be a tiny part in the process that has brought about that change in opinion. That’s a process that is now bearing fruit. The end of the process is equality and justice for all inside and outside the church.

      There are still debates to be had in the media where a pro/anti debate is what they are looking for and the balance argument comes into play. Indeed, I’ve turned down a request to do just such a media debate this week. I don’t think it takes people very far. Incidently, that was my view 6 years ago when I turned down the chance to debate with Fr Gadgetvicar on Newsnight during Holy Week.

  2. I very much enjoyed your discussion last night – especially when you re-iterated the fact that being against homosexuality ISN’T the standard Christian view of the matter. I’ve been told I’m not a true believer because I refuse to see the harm in others being in relationships with others of the same sex. I also don’t see the validity of the argument that it’s the thin end of the wedge, and opens churches to the possibility of legal action if they refuse to perform these ceremonies. I don’t see the difference between this choice, and the choice of celebrates as to whether they perform ceremonies of divorcees. There’s much talking still to be done on the issue, but I wanted to thank you for presenting such a measured view of the opinions of those of us who are Christians AND inclusive of all sorts of people.

  3. David McCarthy says

    Kelvin was standing as a candidate in the election when Newsnight called me in 2005 – as it happens I was at his house drinking tea. They were very surprised that we were being quite so convivial.

    I felt it a pity that an another point of view was not represented the other night – it was hardly a discussion, more a presentation of one side’s opinions.

  4. Sides? When did we begin to have sides?

  5. ”If you are not with me, you are my enemy!” as Darth Vader and evangelical posterboy George W Bush are fond of remarking 😉

    Also , even you, David, say you are in favour of civil partnerships, a view shared by many conservatives. So despite the presence of ‘Christian’ Institute lying bigots, they are largely a loud insignificant minority (even, happily, in your congregation!) and not the legitimate ‘opposing point off view’ . Curious (or not so much) that the BBC had stephen green on in the past, but never felt the need to have antisemitic, racist or sexist speakers to provide ‘balance’ on certain issues.

  6. Sammi del brocco says

    Really enjoyed watching that, and thankyou for standing up. I am gay and have been with my partner for 7 years and to me civil parnership is not a marriage we should be able to get married just like everyone else. as for me marriage is all about committing,loving and spending the rest of your life with some one you love regardless of gender, are we all not human beings and supposedly have human rights? Once again thankyou very enjoyable viewing.

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