Sophie Walker reacts to the events around the reading of the Turing Bill
21 October 2016
It is incumbent on the privileged few, elected to represent us, to make the very best of our imperfect process of democracy. We know that there is a democratic deficit, where women, ethnic minorities, disabled and working class people are underrepresented in Parliament, and that our democracy much poorer for it.
Today we have seen those with that privilege fail to exercise this, as we so often do when it comes to discrimination against marginalised groups. Given the opportunity to rectify the harm done by unjust and shameful homophobic laws that criminalised sexual acts in consensual same-sex relationships, our Justice Minister instead chose to use his power to ‘claim’ a victory for his party, at the expense of a real win for justice.
This unfortunate long tradition of point-scoring rather than prioritising equality is why the Women’s Equality Party was formed. Our goal, as much as equality, is to found a different way of doing politics collaboratively for the benefit of all.
The punishments meted out by previous governments to gay men like Alan Turing leave a stain on our history. It is right that we should do all we can to undo the wrongs of the past. This should be a common goal – never a political football.