On 11 December, the government announced its response to the consultation on same-sex marriage that took place from 15 March through 14 June 2012. The initial consultation concerned how (not whether) to proceed with same-sex civil marriage. In its response to the initial consultation, the Church of England failed to respond to the question that the government had asked. It took the position that all marriage (civil or religious) was the same and that same-sex marriage should not be offered by the state.
We had a few comments from readers regarding my recent post on the Church of England’s views on same-sex marriage, co-written with my colleague Iain McLean. Below are two reader responses, and my replies. David wrote: ‘that differential treatment of the applicants’ rights fell within the ‘margin of appreciation’ afforded to member states.’ This is crucial factor in assessing the Church of England’s response. The reason for the European Court respecting the margin of appreciation. Judge Malinverni put it clearly: ‘Article 12 is inapplicable to persons of the same sex. Admittedly, in guaranteeing the right to marry, Article 9 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union deliberately omitted any reference to men and women, since it …
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