07 June 2008

MEPs' stand on discrimination by Albert Gauci Cunningham (Times of Malta, Saturday 7th June 2008)

That the two PN MEPs are against or do not endorse gay partnerships or marriages or whatever anyone would like to call them is by now clear but that these two abstain on a motion whose aim was to combat discrimination against various issues (homosexuality included) is very unfair and verges on total hypocrisy. Had homosexuality not been included in the "list" I bet my last penny in my pocket that the two MEPs would have come to Malta trumpeting their heroic act of kindness towards a more "inclusive" society.

Which begs the question: Why? Why does the party we have put our belief in time and again persist in insulting our intelligence and work against our close interests? Why is it not even capable of agreeing with things that in a "Christian society" are deemed fair: inclusivity, love, equality and condemnation of barefaced discrimination? Why do some politicians persist in giving the impression that Malta is holier than the Vatican? What is David Casa going to tell the many gay people (and there are many believe me!) who support the PN or who even work within the PN? Is he going to tell them that he loves them and respects them but is too afraid of rocking the ultra-conservative boat?

This is exactly what makes me fume about the PN and this might very well be the main reason why many people like me are leaving the party in droves. Before anyone gives me the usual reaction of "keeping the party's values" intact, may I remind all and sundry that in no political document, in no electoral programme and in no written record is there any "value" of not having a position on discrimination.

Playing Humpty Dumpty does not work; it didn't work with the MLP and they hit rock bottom and it will not work with the PN either. Just as many PN gurus used to pontificate about how a no vote is a vote for the MLP, an abstention, in this case, is nothing less than a vote against Europe's drive to fight any discrimination on the basis of sexuality among others.

Others might be petrified to challenge the status quo but I am not. I believed in the PN and gave the little I could to see it in power as it was the better choice but I did not give a carte blanche to anyone to trample on my rights under the guise of "values" and "tradition". When PN politicians cross the line of decency, they will be no less deserving of criticism from those who support it.

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