Friday, 14 December 2012

Jeeves and the Same-Sex Marriage

Another post from Hnaef's old school-mate, Bertie Wooster, on a pressing subject for us all.

It is at this time of year, when yellow fog creeps around the lamp-posts of the old metrop', that I occasionally take a look at one of the national dailies. Not the Telegraph, of course - too high-brow for Bertram Wilberforce Wooster - nor yet the Guardian. I worry that the Guardian encourages the intellects of girls like Florence Craye to even greater heights. Although Jeeves sometimes likes to read out the comments on the Comment is Free - Belief web-page, to remind me of how ghastly things would be if we had a revolution.
No, I had a brief read of the Sun. And what I saw there caused my knotted and combined locks to part and each particular hair to stand an end, like quills upon the fretful porpentine.

"Jeeves," I called out.

"Yes, sir?" he replied, from the kitchen, where he was preparing the fragrant eggs and b. for the old breakfast.

"Jeeves, it seems the Government are looking to legalise Same-Sex Marriage."

"Indeed, sir. It is often the way with incompetent young men like Mr Cameron and Mr Osborne that, faced with a large problem they are unable to solve, they try to remedy a problem they think they have the intellectual powers to tackle."

"So what you're saying, Jeeves, is that Corky Cameron and Oofy Osborne think that if they let men marry other men, nobody will notice that the country's got less money that Tuppy Glossop on Boat-Race night?"

"Indeed sir."

"That's not going to work, is it?"

"Almost certainly not, sir."

"Still, on the bright side, Jeeves - why should our more artistic friends not be allowed, when the urge to settle down and plight their troth strikes them, to make their vows at the direction of Rev. Joseph Tucker (Badgwick), Rev. Leonard Starkie (Stapleton), Rev. Alexander Jones (Upper Bingley),  or Rev. W. Dix (Little Clickton-on-the-Wold) as the case may be? What's sauce for the gander is sauce for the other gander, eh?"

"One would think so, Sir. But what Sir is perhaps unaware of is that same-sex marriages will not be performed by any of the gentlemen of the cloth you just mentioned."

"So maybe Rev. JJ Roberts of Fale-by-the-Water will bring himself to do so? I've heard stories about old JJ dating right back to Magdalen..."

"Sir, regardless of what you may have heard of the Rev. JJ Roberts, he is unlikely to do so either. The Church of England will not be allowed to conduct such weddings."

I sipped the healing oolong and frowned briefly. Bronski Beat Night at the Drones had been a rather wild event, and the old bean was not firing on all four cylinders.

"Jeeves, this confuses me strongly. So Corky and Offy are allowing same-sex weddings, but not in churches?"

"No, Sir. Churches may conduct such weddings if they wish."

"But the Church of England does not so wish?"

"The Church of England, Sir, has no choice. The Government has decided - at least until they change their mind again - that the Church of England is not allowed to choose. It has also decided the same for the Church in Wales."

"The Church in Wales, Jeeves?"

"Indeed, Sir."

"Is there still a Church in Wales?"

"One or two, I believe, Sir."

"Well, Jeeves - I suppose that's the State Religion, so that's why they can't carry out the weddings that everyone else can? Odd, I suppose, but consistent with the good old C of E."

"Your reasoning is sound, Sir, except that the Church in Wales is not established."

"Gosh, Jeeves. So - and correct me if I'm wrong - churches will be allowed to conduct these weddings, because the Government is in favour of same-sex weddings, except for the one church that the Government actually has a say in running, which won't be allowed to?"

"Correct, Sir."

"And except for one other church that the Government doesn't have a say in, but which presumably the Government doesn't realise it doesn't have a say in."

"Indeed, Sir."

"And some say I'm the one with few brains. At least I know that England and Wales are different places."

"Indeed Sir. Is there anything else, Sir?"

"Just one thing. Jeeves.... will you marry me?"

"Certainly not, Sir. Not if it has to be in some red-brick Congregationalist chapel."

"I know what you mean, Jeeves. Definitely not the place for a Society bash."

"Quite, Sir."


  1. But it seems that the church is allowed to choose, it just has to do it properly by going through its own processes, changing Canon Law and then asking Parliament to approve the change. The ball is well and truly back in its court - where it should be.

    1. Yes, I'm not sure about them, only that they asked to be treated like the CoE. I think they're regretting that now.

    2. There again, the Bill hasn't actually been written yet, so the Church in Wales should just be able to write a letter to state that, on reflection, they do not wish to be treated like the CoE but like all the other denominations.

  2. In the meantime, they will concentrate on trying to bless the civil partnerships no-one will be entering into any more once they're allowed to get married.

  3. Although... if they allow opposite-sex civil partnerships it might make a bit of sense to allow us to bless those...


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