I feel as if I have been here many times before. An association, group, party, organisation, call it whatever you wish, sets in motion a change which causes seismic breaks in the norms of its existence. This challenges the beliefs and value systems of all members. At some stage the veracity of the term ‘broadchurch’ is put through the wringer only to emerge tattered and shredded at the other end.
I have seen this happen twice. I am a regular Church of England attendee. When, both, the ordination of women was allowed and gay marriage was recognised it split the church. Pure and simply put, there was no broadchurch which reconciled people’s hard held beliefs. There may have been compromise over allowing women to progress from doing the Sunday flowers to doing admin jobs but that was the extent of gender compromise for many. I have a gay vicar and many people skedaddled when he was appointed.
How does a party combine a wide array of beliefs among the leaders who come from a diverse political background? Let’s be clear, the concept of diversity would be extremely difficult to apply here because the ground being levelled isn’t based on the universal tenets of ‘everyone being equal’. Political diversity isn’t the same as diversity predicated on humanity. How do you combine anti-gay beliefs, Libertarian attitudes, anti-austerity and pro-austerity stances with calls for low tax or higher tax?
The Lib Dems have had a great opening rally to the start of their conference. It was an evening of celebration and rightly so too. But what is the end game?