English MP’s Seek to Overturn Hundreds of Years of Law Surrounding Definition of Marriage

UK Parliament Credit Tony MooreyENGLAND — Members of Parliament (MPs) in the UK want to overturn hundreds of years of legislation recognizing the biblical definition of marriage and family.

MPs recently agreed on the sweeping changes to legislation that date as far back as the 13th century to avoid clashes with the Married Couples Act, that allows homosexuals to get married. Civil Servants have consolidated a list of statutes and regulations dating as early as 1285 to be changed or excluded when the Government’s Same-Sex Marriage Act comes into force next month.

Under the proposals, references to mother, father and husband will be amended in acts dating back to almost seven hundred years ago will be removed. The term widow would also be removed or replaced with ‘surviving spouse,’ or in some instances, with “the woman whose deceased spouse was a man.”

The Treason Act 1351 would be partially changed, meaning that it will remain high treason to have sexual relations with the wife of a future king, but it will not be the case if the adultery is committed with a king’s same-sex spouse.

The amendments would likewise make clear that a man who “marries” a King of Britain cannot be referred to as Queen, and the same-sex partner of a future prince of Wales cannot be entitled to be Princess of Wales.

The orders would extend to dukes, earls and other male peers in order to stop same-sex partners from becoming a duchess, countess or lady.

Alterations have also been proposed to the Metropolitan Public Carriage Act 1869, which allows cab licenses of husbands who have passed away to transfer to their widows.

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“The government was warned time and time again that its plans would result in legal confusion and do away with the common understanding of historic terms such as ‘husband’, ‘wife’, and ‘widow,'” Andrea Williams of Christian Concern (CCFON), a Christian think tank, said. “We now have a situation where laws dating back 700 years must be revised and tampered with in order to accommodate the new legislation. Proposed amendments in areas ranging from cab licenses to royal titles show what a mess the government has created.”

Julian Lipson, head of the family law practice at Withers LLP, told the Telegraph, “The route the government has chosen seems to admit that the equalness of same-sex marriage has its limits. It seems that they are getting it all tidied up before these changes take effect to avoid uncertainties.”

Colin Hart, campaign director for the Coalition for Marriage, accused the government of trying to underhandedly alter the law during the nation’s flooding crisis.

“We repeatedly warned that the government’s plans were ill thought out, complicated and would have a damaging effect on those who support traditional marriage,” he said. “Those warnings were dismissed, yet just a few months later we have ministers engaged in an unprecedented and systematic drive to airbrush out of law words like husband, wife and widow in order to make the legislation work.”

“Worse still, the government has tried to sneak the changes out when most of the country is worried about the plight of those families and areas affected by flooding,” Hart continued. “It is clear the government is in a complete mess, which could have been prevented had they engaged in an open and meaningful debate, instead of ramming this through Parliament.”

Photo: Tony Moorey

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