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A Turn to the Rights: UK Conservative Christian Lobby Groups and the ‘Gay Debate’

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The extension of non-heterosexual rights in largely liberal democratic contexts and confirmed in wider international conventions poses a challenge to Christian churches which historically condemned homosexuality and other sexual ‘variations’ on the basis of religious conviction. The stance taken by contemporary churches on these rights issues now diverge considerably. This article, however, considers the entrenched position of conservative Christian factions in the UK that have intensified their levels of political mobilisation at a time when they are drawn into the political arena through the implications of non-heterosexual rights in both the churches and the secular world. The article explores the way in which these cadres are forced to engage with the rhetoric of rights as an integral part of their oppositional stance, while attempting to negate the foundational basis of non-heterosexual rights. It will conclude with a discussion of how such developments connect with human rights theory.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Health & Applied Social Sciences University of the West of England UK


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