A UK Independence Party (Ukip) councillor is blaming British Prime Minister David Cameron's support to legalize gay marriage for recent storms and floods. He has now been suspended from the party for his remarks
David Silvester, a Henley-on-Thames councillor who defected from the Tories in protest at the prime minister's support for same-sex unions, has said he warned Cameron that legalizing gay marriage would result in "disaster," the Irish Times reports.
In a letter he wrote to the Henley Standard, Silvester says, “The scriptures make it abundantly clear that a Christian nation that abandons its faith and acts contrary to the Gospel (and in naked breach of a coronation oath) will be beset by natural disasters such as storms, disease, pestilence and war.
“I wrote to David Cameron in April 2012 to warn him that disasters would accompany the passage of his same-sex marriage bill.
“But he went ahead despite a 600,000-signature petition by concerned Christians and more than half of his own parliamentary party saying that he should not do so.”
He went on to blame the prime minister for the bad weather, saying, “It is his fault that large swathes of the nation have been afflicted by storms and floods.
“He has arrogantly acted against the Gospel that once made Britain ‘great’ and the lesson surely to be learned is that no man or men, however powerful, can mess with Almighty God with impunity and get away with it for everything a nation does is weighed on the scaled of divine approval or disapproval.”
A spokesperson for Ukip said the councillor's beliefs were "not the party's belief" but defended his right to an opinion.
“If the media are expecting Ukip to either condemn or condone someone’s personal religious views they will get absolutely no response. Whether Jain or Sikh or Buddhist or Sufi or Zoroastrian or Jewish or Muslim or Baptist or Hindu or Catholic or Baha’i or Animist or any other mainstream or minor religion or movement, we are taught as a tolerant society to accept a diversity of ideologies," said the party spokeswoman.
“Freedom to individual thought and expression is a central tenet of any open-minded and democratic country. It is quite evident that this is not the party’s belief but the councillor’s own and he is more than entitled to express independent thought despite whether or not other people may deem it standard or correct.
“That is what makes the United Kingdom such a wonderful, proud, diverse and free country.”
Said Henley’s Tory MP John Howell, “I thought Mr Silvester’s letter was not the sort of thing that he should have written in today’s age. He really needs to consider his position.”
Ukip's south east chairman Roger Bird said: "We cannot have any individual using the Ukip banner to promote their controversial personal beliefs which are not shared by the party.
"Everyone is entitled to their own religious ideology which is central to a free and fair society. Councillor Silvester's views are his own and in no way reflect the party's position. Indeed Councillor Silvester himself has clearly stated this.
"However, Councillor Silvester has today acted contrary to party requests and continued to court the media in order to promote his own personal beliefs.t