A debate has been organised between prominent LGBT rights activist Steve Donnan and opponent of gay marriage Jamie Bryson. The online debate will be chaired by award winning Irish News journalist Allison Morris.
The debate will take place on Friday 5th of June at 7pm-8pm via Google Hangouts, where both participants will be able to interact with one another and with the chair.
To facilitate different voices and views, questions can be submitted by twitter users up until Thursday 4th June at 12 noon. Five questions will be selected for Jamie and five for Steve. Users can submit their questions using #AskBrysondebate or #AskDonnandebate
Steve and Jamie will both spend five minutes outlining their positions before answering the selected questions that have been submitted, this will then lead onto a free flowing debate for 20 minutes between Jamie and Steve.
At the end of the debate Allison will select random questions that have been submitted via twitter during the debate and pose these to Jamie and Steve, neither of whom will have any prior knowledge of the questions.
Steve said “following online questions posed to him about his attitude to LGBT rights, Jamie has said he would be happy to take part in a debate on these issues, so I am happy to engage with him in a conversation around what is a very important issue to many. All too often people in this country can entrench themselves in their own positions and refuse to reach out to one another so I hope Jamie and I can break that mould and listen to one another, talk openly and honestly and engage in the lost art of conversation. LGBT rights is an issue close to my heart so I hope to be able to express my views within the context of a respectful and civilised debate.”
Jamie said “I look forward to a robust but respectful debate. It is easy for people to hide behind keyboards and hurl abuse, I respect the fact that Steve has come forward and wishes to engage in a face to face public debate. I welcome the opportunity to articulate my views on the subject and also to respectfully listen to Steves position on the issue of LGBT rights and equality. This will not be a shouting match, I respect Steve as a person and a human being, it is only his view on these matters I am opposed to.”