THE Core Issues Trust, an outfit that believes in the “legitimacy of therapy for those dealing with unwanted feelings of same-sex attraction” and is vehemently opposed to gay unions, is seeking a judicial review this week of a decision by London Mayor Boris Johnson not to allow it to plaster its propaganda on the die of buses.
In response to gay rights group Stonewall’s “Some People are gay. Get over it!” bus posters, Core issues concocted an alternative poster, declaring:
Not Gay! Ex-Gay, Post-Gay and Proud. Get over it!
They got in a huff after being told by Johnson to stuff it; that the message was offensive to gays, and could even spark retaliation against the wider Christian community.
The trust declares on its website:
The advertisements indirectly advocated the possibility that some individuals benefit from sexual re-orientation therapy and as men and women who voluntarily seek change in sexual preference and expression, should be respected in their choices to seek help in this way.
The trust added:
On Thursday, the Trust will ask Judges to reverse the ban on the basis that the Mayor had unlawfully restricted free speech, and had discriminated against the Trust by stifling one side of the debate on the issue.
It will also point to advertisements permitted by TfL on other controversial issues including pregnancy and abortion advisory services, sexualised imagery of women and the recent campaign by the British Humanist Association in which the poster read ‘There’s probably no God’.
It also said:
On Thursday Dr Mike Davidson, the head of the trust, and his supporters will go to the High Court to claim Mr Johnson’s ban on their poster campaign should be reversed on the grounds that he unlawfully stifled free speech.
According to this report, “this is all about being free to talk about these issues,” said Dr Davidson, who himself “has a homosexual past”.
The Belfast-based crackpot said:
It was a mistake to assume these views we were expressing came from entrenched homophobia, and failed to recognise that people who want to walk away from their homosexual feelings are a group in their own right.
Andrea Minichiello Williams, director of the Christian Legal Centre, which is supporting Dr Davidson’s case, said:
The ban on these advertisements was the beginning of a kind of reverse discrimination which threatens to obliterate debate in the public sphere. Boris Johnson needs to realise his mistake and ensure there is freedom for all in the marketplace of ideas. He cannot prefer one group over another.
A Transport for London spokesman said:
The advertisement breached TfL’s advertising policy as in our view it contained a publicly controversial message and was likely to cause widespread offence to members of the public.
Hat tip: BarrieJohn