Nigel Farage , the leader of the UK Independence Party, is bringing further controversy to the Croydon North by-election, visiting the constituency this morning to support his candidate’s ailing campaign and specifically backing Winston McKenzie‘s remarks made in opposition to gay marriage.
McKenzie has already apologised for some anti-gay Tweets, in which he claimed “Winston gives it to you straight”. On Croydon Radio yesterday, McKenzie admitted that his straight line was “crass”.
But today, Farage is seeking to make the gay marriage issue part of UKIP’s election campaign in an apparent attempt to appeal to the many faith groups in the area, some of which oppose the notion of their being obliged to conduct wedding ceremonies for single-sex couples.
Farage said, “Winston McKenzie is the only candidate in this by-election that is opposed to the imposition of gay marriage.”
In fact, McKenzie joins Richard Edmonds, the National Front’s candidate in Croydon North, in opposing gay marriage.
Yet twice-married Farage, the former Conservative party member who is now an outspoken member of the European parliament, will find that he is making his visit just a day after McKenzie called for Christianity to hold primacy among religions in this country.
Surprisingly, bearing in mind the diversity of faiths represented in Croydon North, McKenzie told the Croydon Matters radio programme yesterday that, “At all times, we must remember that this country is a predominantly Christian country. We should not be coerced into believing that it is anything but that.
“Britain itself must not change its views and its attitudes and its culture from being anything other than a Christian country,” McKenzie said on Croydon Radio.
No other leading candidates have made religion or sexual orientation an election issue in the highly diverse Croydon North constituency, although it is well-known that Andy Stranack, the Conservative candidate, is active in a local church, and Steve Reed, the Labour candidate, is openly gay.
- Inside Croydon: For comment and analysis about Croydon, from inside Croydon
- Post your comments on this article below. If you have a news story about life in or around Croydon, a residents’ or business association or local event, please email us with full details at email@example.com
- UKIP candidate McKenzie fails to deliver his own brothers (insidecroydon.com)
- Marisha Ray selected for Lib Dems in Croydon North (libdemvoice.org)
- Urgent actions to save co-op housing! (lambethsaveourservices.org)
The United Kingdom is a monarchy and HM the Queen is the Head of the Church of England.
I am a Catholic and a republican (upholding the form of state called a republic).
I live in the UK. Peacefully.
North Croydon is indeed a highly diverse constituency. Mr. Farage has little to offer and is, thus, resorting to trying to appeal to the emotional disquiet of voters who feel their views are not taken into consideration. The redefinition of marriage is a divisive issue and, perhaps, a ploy to divert attention from the many failures of this wretched government without a mandate want to impose without understanding or weighing all the legal and practical implications of of such a legislation.
The religious beliefs and sexual orientation of anybody around me does not influence my relationship or feelings towards them. My friends come in different colours and shapes.
I stand against discrimination on the basis of nationality, sex, gender, and gender-identity.
I am increasingly annoyed with intolerant people who follow scripts and wish to impose their way of life on me and accuse me of not “evolving with times”. I have a right to hold a different opinion: I believe in marriage between a man and a woman.
I was happy when most countries made civil partnerships legal. I am still campaigning for it to become law in my country of origin.
I would not vote for Mr. Farage’s party.
What Century do they think we are living in????
Pingback: UKIP: The respectable face of the far right | Symon Hill