During the two-day debate on the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill earlier this week, there were moving speeches from various members of the House who are gay and reference was variously made to the speeches of Lord Browne of Madingley, Lord Smith of Finsbury, Lord Black of Brentwood and Baroness Barker. Some speakers spoke against the Bill. Among vociferous opponents were Lord Tebbit and a member of Ian Paisley’s flock, the Democratic Unionist peer Lord Browne of Belmont.
Lord Dear responded to the debate, indicating he planned to push his amendment to reject the Bill to a vote. His ability with names rather let him down. In the course of his speech, he declared:
“I, like many others in your Lordships’ House, was moved by the speeches of, for example, the noble Lords, Lord Browne of Belmont, Lord Smith of Finsbury, and Lord Black of Brentwood, and the noble Baroness, Lady Barker. Their ability to speak as they did, and that those views can be accepted in public, was refreshing and commendable.”
I am not sure how Lord Browne of Belmont took this inclusion of his name with members who had expressed themselves as gay! I laughed. I suspect he may not have done.