Nothing gets a progressive liberals knickers in a twist more than someone having a go at one of their pet victim groups - ethnics, wimmin and gays. Thus we have Iain Dale getting all bent out of shape by the pope condemning homosexuality as "damaging to the future of the world as the destruction of the rain forests".
In defence of the pope, the statement is quite clever - i.e. it depends on how damaging you think the destruction of the rain forests is to the future of the earth to make a judgement on how damaging homosexuality is - some might say "not very", but they aren't likely to be liberals.
Dale wonders why the pope hasn't done more to root out homosexuals from the Catholic priesthood - conveniently ignoring the fact that Catholic priests are celibate so it doesn't matter whether they are gay or straight. Either way they can't procreate. But Dale makes this assumption ....
Perhaps he thinks it's OK as long as they keep themselves to themselves. Except that most of them don't.
.. and then goes on to make this leap of faith.
The trouble is that bigots like "His Holiness" (it's almost a joke writing those two words in this context) continue to believe that homosexuality = paedophilia. If you're gay, you must a) be promiscuous and b) be attracted to anything in shorts, no matter how young. He could not be more wrong.
So one minute he is saying that gay Catholic priests can't keep their hands to themselves, but then goes on to claim that it's the Pope who thinks all queers are kiddy fiddlers? Maybe Dale thinks it's something to do with the dog collar that turns ordinary gay men into unrepentant sex offenders - or the Holy Water maybe?
He also believes that homosexuality is a choice. It is not. It is in theory true that you can choose (if your resistance to temptation is stronger than most) not to practise it, but its existence within you is not a matter of choice.
All sexuality is a choice. It's the ability to choose that makes us different from the other animals. The "I was born that way" is the same argument used by paedophiles to justify their disgusting perversion and if Dale is seriously suggesting that we can not be expected to control our base sexual urges then we may as well legalise that (not that we're very far from that anyway).
Dale goes on to say "[t]he Pope is entitled to his view, and he's entitled to express it. But I am also entitled to say that I find his views repellent and disgusting." - well if the Pope were aware of who Dale was he might say the same thing about him, but I doubt that he'll be too bothered.
As someone who is totally ambivalent towards homosexuality I don't particularly care what people say about gays anymore than I care what anybody says about crocodiles. I'm not offended by the Pope's comments and I don't particularly care if he upsets Dale or anyone else by saying it - but what does bother me about Dale's post is the last line.
PS I do hope the LibDem bloggers who were so 'outraged' by my comment yesterday (see below) will be just as vociferous in their condemnation of the Pope's comments.
Hmmm - sounds like Dale is trying to win back some favour with certain people.