Public Opinion and Same-Sex Marriage – John Curtice

A while ago we had a real treat at St Mary’s. Prof John Curtice gave a talk about public opinion and same-sex marriage. It was one of those forums which was very special for those who were there. There simply isn’t anyone who knows how to read and interpret public opinion as John can and it was great to see him in action.

It was also one of the first forum meetings which I videoed. Unfortunately, the talk that John gave was fantastic but the audio on the video was terrible. Lots of people tried to listen but some were quite disappointed. For that reason, I was delighted that John agreed to give a similar, though slightly updated, talk to the diocesan synod that we held here in the Diocese of Glasgow and Galloway on 1 March 2014. Once again, John was gracious enough to allow it to be videoed and this time the audio is tip-top, thanks to Kennedy Fraser’s work on the sound-desk.

This can be posted freely. I suspect that it may help far more people in the church get their heads around where public opinion lies on this question than were at the synod the other week. Do share and use on other blogs and diocesan websites. And take a look – it is well worth putting aside half an hour to watch.

Now the question for the day, is – in what ways does public opinion matter when the churches make their minds up about same-sex marriage?

The Forum – John Curtice

We were very lucky yesterday to have a special forum meeting at St Mary’s with John Curtice.

Prof John Curtice is a member of St Mary’s and the Professor of Politics at Strathclyde University. He is a public opinion guru – constantly analysing figures, opinion polls and election results. In his forum presentation yesterday he reviewed changing attitudes to same-sex marriage and then took questions from the folk who were there.

Introduced by Pam Richmond of St Mary’s Justice and Aid Network, the forum is available in two videos – the first being the presentation and the second a question and answer session.

There were lots of interesting things which came out of the session. It was noted for example that the Roman Catholic community in Scotland seems to be particularly accepting of same-sex marriage proposals. Also that those who go to church more often are more likely to be less accepting. Along the way we learned about what John called a phenomenal cultural revolution – a change in public attitudes which is striking, recent and unlike almost anything else which is tracked.

For those who subscribe by email, the videos can be seen on the Cathedral website.