The religious right’s time machine, once calibrated to take us back to the golden age of the 1950s, has apparently been reset for several decades earlier — to sometime before the 1931 Statute of Westminster foolishly granted legislative autonomy to our frozen little dominion.

Religious broadcaster David Mainse — he of “100 Huntley Street” reknown — has decided that if democracy isn’t going to come up with the outcomes he ordains, then screw the goddamn thing. (That’s not a verbatim quote, if you’re wondering.)

He’s launched a drive to convince Queen Elizabeth II to trigger a constitutional crisis (and that is a verbatim quote) and, by leaning on Adrienne Clarkson, refuse royal assent to Bill C-38, the federal legislation that will formally recognize the marriages of same-sex couples.

(Three days after Mainse began his campaign, bombs exploded in London. In the interests of politeness, he might want to update his call to arms with an “I know you’re busy comforting the wounded and bereaved, but when you have a moment, you just won’t believe what the queers are up to.” Right now, his web site at doesn’t offer an iota of recognition that Great Britain is quite fully stocked with crises right now, thank you, without creating new ones.)

What I’ve asked before, but would still desperately like to know, is this: why is same-sex marriage their line in the sand? I don’t recall reading about Christ lamenting the dangers of lesbians and gay men getting hitched; if you believe the bible, he tended to go on and on about things like poverty and comforting the afflicted instead. Maybe my Google skills are lacking, but I can’t seem to find any references to David Mainse asking Her Majesty to rewrite 70 years of constitutional practice and, say, disallow one of Paul Martin’s earlier budgets — the ones that slashed social spending and taxes on the wealthy.

Still, if Mainse really wants to put power in the hands of the Queen (ahem), why stop with the Statute of Westminster, when the Magna Carta is just sitting there, waiting for some humble broadcaster with a Zippo? Next stop, 1297 A.D.!