‘To the living we owe respect, but to the dead we owe only the truth’

As much as I like Voltaire, on this matter, he is entirely wrong. Respect is a universal basis for everything. Mrs Thatcher leaving the Palace of Westminster today for her funeral bought back childhood memories of the first time I got interested in politics, the night she left Downing Street in 1990. A kind of irony in that, but also something which seems totally right and proper. Stabbed in the back and discarded by her own allies and today given a send off fit for royalty and attended by some of the aforementioned. This was not a state funeral as Winston Churchill had been given, but it certainly involved the kind of pomp and pageantry that Britain does best and London has not seen anything on that scale since the Queen Mother died a decade ago. Love her or hate her this was a momentous day and I cannot really let it go by without ...

‘Vive La Différence …. Or Not’

By Wednesday, April 3, 2013 0 Permalink

The French protesting? Incroyable! Scandaleux! Well actually this time, it is, because people took to the streets about a topic that has become passé everywhere else - gay marriage. This protest was not steeped in religious fundamentalism or homophobia , nor was it orchestrated by far right lunatics. It is actually a very clear minded and seemingly coherent demonstration of a sustained protest against extending marriage rights for homosexuals. Much public debate has gone on in France helped (or hindered) by the strange figure of Frigide Barjot (Google her, I cannot bring myself to put a link here)! and her eclectic band of protesters. Naturally religious figures have also come out against the Bill and those on the far right of the political spectrum have also hijacked the debate. However it is very notable that the protest has been largely nothing to with religion at all. Which makes a nice change. The superb blog Gulf Stream Blues reports on ...