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I AM sorry that Carol Runciman (Letters, February 13), whom I respect, endorses the suggestion that to oppose the same-sex marriage Bill is to be homophobic or against complete equality of the legal and fiscal rights of homosexual couples vis-à-vis heterosexual couples.
That suggestion is deeply offensive.
Like many of the issues taken up and promoted by contemporary political parties for populist reasons, it is treated superficially.
Marriage describes a union between a man and a woman and as such has been universally recognised for millennia as being beneficial to human society.
It is not better than a solemn commitment to each other by two people of the same sex; it is simply and specifically different from such an undertaking.
Same-sex couples have every right to equality of treatment by the civil authorities, and every right to mark such a public contract by a public celebration.
True progress that properly recognises the value of that commitment to society will be to give the contract and celebration a distinctive official title.
Maurice Vassie, Deighton, York