Another day, another UKIP scandal – this one’s about homophobia

James George Hargreaves, who was Operation Christian candidate at a by-election in Hodge Hill, according to the Coventry Telegraph [Image: Coventry Telegraph].

James George Hargreaves, who was Operation Christian candidate at a by-election in Hodge Hill, according to the Coventry Telegraph [Image: Coventry Telegraph].

UKIP intends to parachute anti-gay preacher Reverend George Hargreaves into Coventry South as the party’s prospective Parliamentary candidate there, after asking current candidate Mick Taylor to stand aside.

Rev Hargreaves made his fortune in the 1980s pop industry penning hits such as ‘So Macho’ for singer Sinitta, according to the Coventry Telegraph.

He then went on to launch a political career, standing in the Scottish Parliamentary elections for his own Scottish Christian Party with a strong anti gay message, according to Hope Not Hate, describing homosexuality as “a sin” and calling for a hard-line stance against abortion and euthanasia along with supporting a return of the death penalty and withdrawal from the EU.

“The manifesto for the Scottish election contained proposals for the reinstatement of Section 28, banning of gay adoption and the prohibition of ‘acceptance or approval’ of homosexuality in diversity training, outlawing embryo research and introducing mandatory Christian religious education into schools.”

Charming! And after making all his money from a gay anthem, too!

Back to Hope Not Hate: “His former flatmate and song writing partner was a gay man who died of AIDS. This didn’t stop Hargreaves saying in one interview that HIV patients should be refused NHS treatment since their illness was “self-inflicted”.

“Hargreaves also formed The Welsh Christian Party in 2007 and campaigned to remove the dragon from the Welsh flag, claiming that it was ‘nothing less than the sign of Satan’.”

… And that is how this writer met him!

He seems par for the course as far as UKIP is concerned!

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

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  1. beastrabban February 14, 2015 at 8:53 pm - Reply

    You met Hargreaves when he was campaigning to have the dragon removed from the Welsh flag? I’m really impressed. How did you manage to keep a straight face?

    On a more serious note, I think you can have legitimate objections to abortion, euthanasia and embryo experimentation, which are rationally supported. However, Hargreaves views strike me as being so extreme that he’s basically nuts. I don’t doubt that a lot of people would support the return of the death penalty, even though Pierrepoint, Britain’s last hangman, said at one point that he didn’t believe it was a deterrent, only state-sanctioned revenge.

    What the Hope Not Hate article didn’t say, but which was revealed in Private Eye article about him and the Christian Party, was that they hated the welfare state and the NHS. Basically, you’re looking at someone, who’s taken over the politics of the American religious right, and wants to import it over here.

    The other side of this, of course, is that the American Religious Right by and large aren’t representative of much of American Christianity. A few years ago a book appeared written by an American sociologist, The Truth about Evangelicals. This noted that there were just as many left-wing ‘conservative Christians’, that is, Christians with conservative theological views, as there were right-wing. Furthermore, left-wing evangelical Christians could be further to the left than American Roman Catholics. Put simply, while he’s par for the course for part of the milieu of American religious politics, he’s still pretty nuts.

    • Mike Sivier February 14, 2015 at 11:12 pm - Reply

      It was in a guest house in Llandrindod Wells, Powys. The first thing I noticed about the place was the flag it was flying – rather than the Welsh flag (with the dragon), it was flying the cross of St David. The interview was… uncomfortable. I don’t think I’ve kept a copy of it although I could be wrong.

  2. Gordon Powrie February 15, 2015 at 11:54 am - Reply

    Is it printable?

    • Mike Sivier February 15, 2015 at 4:43 pm - Reply

      Oh yes, it was published in one of the many publications for which I’ve worked.

  3. Carla Woods February 15, 2015 at 3:52 pm - Reply

    I think Hargreaves needs to get his facts straight with regards to HIV being self inflected. In fact during 1980’s in this country and many countries this was not the case as many were given contaminated blood from the prisons in Arkansan whilst President Clinton was a governor in Arkansan. As governor he allowed prisoners to sell their blood for 7 dollars then charged people outside the prison walls 14 dollars. Many of those inside prison were from skid row and yet they were allowed to be literally drained of their blood without no limitations as to how much blood was being taken at any one time.

    This little ‘blood factory’ of course developed for many the disease HIV leading to Aids and also Hep C. Many were infected with the disease not leaving here in the UK out. Over 2,000 people have died from being infected this way since 1980 and they are still dying to this day. The majority of the population were Haemophiliacs however there were other people given infected blood during that time, those who had visited their dentists, were pregnant to name but a few. Partners were also infected unknowingly when they were unaware that one partner was already infected.

    So to say that people who have developed HIV – AIDS is self inflected, no sorry Mr Hargreaeves you have it wrong, very very wrong. May I suggest you get your facts straight before you start spouting.

    Also as a Christian how can you be so inconsiderate to those less fortunate than yourself, you are a disgrace to Christianity.

    • Mike Sivier February 15, 2015 at 4:56 pm - Reply

      I’ve heard this claim. It goes on to suggest that some of this blood made its way into the supplies being used by the National Health Service during the 1980s/1990s (? I’m sure someone will be able to provide the correct dates) and there is a campaign to make the British authorities own up and pay compensation (? Again, I’m sketchy on the details as it has been a while).

      Personally, I always thought Christianity was about helping and healing people, not segregating them and demonising them.

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