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Right wing MP warns gay marriage will lead to polygamy in UK

Right wing MP warns gay marriage will lead to polygamy in UK

A Conservative politician in northern England has joined homophobic Scottish campaigners in warning that gay marriage could lead to the legalization of polygamy.

Craig Whittaker, MP for Calder Valley in Yorkshire, wrote on his blog that he feared if the UK government goes ahead with plans to give same-sex couples equal marriage rights, then it would be a slippery slope towards far more radical laws.

He wrote: ‘My overriding concern is that if we do indeed as a Parliament change legislation to allow same-sex marriage now, then what will our successors be discussing and have to legislate for in the future? Polygamy? Three-way relationships? Who knows what else?’

Mr Whittaker points to other countries which have legalized gay marriage as evidence for his theory, claiming it has led to the legal recognition of three-way relationships in the Netherlands, genderless birth and marriage certificates in Spain and the US state of Massachusetts and a 2007 appeal court ruling in Ontario, Canada, which allowed a child to legally have three parents.

He also claims that there have been attempts in the Canadian state of British Columbia to legalize polygamy on the basis of gay marriage.

‘Marriage has a unique place in our society,’ he added.

‘It is a bedrock institution and the most stable environment for raising children. Redfining marriage would make marriage adult-centered rather than child-centered.’

His warning echoes that of anti-gay Christian group Scotland for Marriage, which launched a petition last month (April 2012) calling for the current definition of marriage to be maintained and also claiming that the legalization of gay marriage could lead to law changes, including allowing polygamy.

British Prime Minister David Cameron has reportedly backed down from legalizing gay marriage, to appease right-wing Conservative backbenchers following a crushing defeat in local elections last Thursday (3 May).

However, Britain’s equality minister Lynne Featherstone has reassured same-sex couples that she still backs marriage equality.

The UK government launched a 12-week consultation on gay marriage on 15 March.