The Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) is formally investigating Archbishop Cranmer and has demanded a written response for posting the following “homophobic and offensive” advert on his blog:
His Grace has posted an unofficial response here.
This blog has made no secret of its view on the Coalition for Marriage (see ‘Redefining Marriage and the C4M’) but thoroughly defends the right to disagree. Nevertheless, that Cranmer – an advocate of the petition – is being forced to provide a written response to claims of homophobia for posting an advert which advocates the conservation of an already existing law is utterly ludicrous.
It has been argued by some that the 70% claim in the advert is fallacious. However, His Grace is not required to defend this assertion as he did not carry out the research. Therefore, he must only defend against the accusation of homophobia. In truth, it is thoroughly unclear what aspect of the advert is homophobic.
Whilst one may not agree with the premise, purpose or aim of the C4M, to post an advert which states a significant proportion of people wish to conserve the current state of the law on marriage seems little more than a point of fact. Unless, of course, it is now offensive and homophobic to restate existent legislation and proffer an opinion on its relative merits.
Frankly, this attack on Cranmer serves nothing other than to make him a martyr (for a second time) and to disseminate the above advert to a wider audience. For example, this blog would not have published the advert (specifically because it does not support the C4M, though it is considerate and respectful of believers who do) but for this ridiculous story!
* Update (14th May 2012) – His Grace has posted his initial, official response here.