“The DUP is a gang of homophobes, creationists and enemies of gender equality. Has the prime minister no shame?”
So wrote Guardian commentator Matthew d’Ancona on 12th June 2017, in his article ‘May is the past for Tories now. And Amber Rudd looks like the future.’
The context for this article was the immediate aftermath of Theresa May’s disastrous election fail, when an unnecessary snap Election and a disastrously voter-disconnected campaign reduced her from a comfortable Parliamentary majority to no majority at all.
“The DUP is a gang of homophobes, creationists and enemies of gender equality.”
Matthew d’Ancona, The Guardian, 12 June 2017
In the wake of this Election, Theresa May was left looking for coalition partners to prop up her non-majority government, and naturally turned to the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), a socially conservative Northern Ireland party which could offer her the ten Members of Parliament needed for an effective majority.
It was in this context of this proposed deal that Mr. d’Ancona wrote the above article — which deal, according to him, was “wrong in principle, and idiotic in practice.” His statement that “the DUP is a gang of homophobes, creationists and enemies of gender equality,” was used as the social media strap-line for this article — needless to say, such a strap-line got people talking.
It is not my purpose here either to defend or deny that the DUP is “a gang,” nor either to defend or deny that they are homophobes, creationists, or enemies of gender equality. The fact or otherwise of these assertions I leave to others.
My point here is, Mr. d’Ancona’s clear implication was that such people should not be taking part in central government, because they are homophobes, creationists or enemies of gender equality.
Yet in pontificating thus, Mr. d’Ancona is clearly implying that central government no longer has a place for believing Jews, Christians or Muslims.
Why do I say this? Because every believing Jew, Christian or Muslim is by definition a creationist.
A creationist is simply someone who believes that the world was created.
“The implication of Mr. d’Ancona’s comment is that only atheists are now entitled to a voice in UK politics.”
Now every believing Jew, Christian and Muslim believes in a Creator — hence every believing Jew, Christian and Muslim is a creationist. Whether you think that happened by a six-day process, or over billions of years via a ‘Big Bang,’ is neither here nor there.
So the implication of Mr. d’Ancona’s comment is that only atheists are now entitled to a voice in UK politics.
Does it matter that the ten DUP Members of Parliament were duly elected by a fair electoral process? Does it matter that Northern Ireland has a population of 1.8 million people and is socially and culturally very different from the rest of the UK?
Does it matter that, even if all ten of the DUP’s elected Members of Parliament are young-earth creationists (i.e., believe that the world was created 6,000 years ago), how exactly does that in itself render a person unfit to be in government?
Or do elected Members of Parliament now have to pass some sort of ‘Guardian test’ in order to be eligible for Her Majesty’s Cabinet?