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The poor persecuted Christians of England

The Right Reverend and Right Honourable The Lord Carey of Clifton has been let out of his box again, again on his favourite subject of how Christians in England are a persecuted minority.

I like David Cameron and believe he is genuinely sincere in his desire to make Britain a generous nation where we care for one another and where people of faith may exercise their beliefs fully.

But it was a bit rich to hear that the Prime Minister has told religious leaders that they should ‘stand up and oppose aggressive secularisation’ when it seems that his government is aiding and abetting this aggression every step of the way.

At his pre-Easter Downing Street reception for faith leaders, he said that he supported Christians’ right to practise their faith. Yet many Christians doubt his sincerity. According to a new ComRes poll more than two-thirds of Christians feel that they are part of a ‘persecuted minority’

Of course, in a very real sense, he’s right. Barely a day goes by without a story appearing in the papers about the latest outrageous incident whereby people wearing crosses are spat at in the street and beaten up, where job applications are rejected because people are compelled to declare on their forms that they are Christians, where churches are blown up, and where you hear of the latest dawn raid by MI6 on the homes of Christians to cart the senior male (as the head, of course) to be subjected to enhanced coercive interrogation techniques about when the last time they received the Lord’s Supper was.

This is, of course, bullshit.

George Carey is a member of that most ugliest manifestation of (non-)religious belief, the Evangelical. Not to be confused with evangelistic, which is merely about a desire to proactively tell people about something, the Evangelical theological position – whether it’s Christians’ like George Carey or Joel Edwards, Muslims’ like those of Hizb ut-Tahrir, the positions of Orthodox Jews, or Atheists’ such as Richard Dawkins – has difficulty coping with dissenting points of view; the Evangelical position has its 10-point document containing all the necessary Articles of Faith, all of which must be accepted by the believer without discussion in order for the believer to be accepted – there are no shades of grey, no opportunities for the believer to question whether some things should be taken literally or metaphorically, and all those who do not sign up to the complete package unquestioningly are defined as not part of the group. Most Evangelical protestant churches do not participate in ecumenical church groups and associations, because they consider the other churches as not being proper Christians, and thus heretical. And they especially hate Catholics.

Allied to the convincement that they are Right and everybody else is Wrong is the persecution complex. The Evangelical position, by nature of its self-convincement of its absolute rightness, considers that everybody else should be an adherent, and indeed more extreme forms consider that the Evangelical position should not be merely protected but mandated by the State, with the most extreme forms wanting all other views prohibited by the State. So when the State does not comply, they declare themselves persecuted and marginalised.

Of course, when it comes to making idiotic statements, George Carey does have form:

And then there’s his involvement in the Not Ashamed campaign.

At least now the current Government is continuing the progressive policy started by the previous government of reversing the institutionalised persecution of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered Christians, but of course the current Government is persecuting and marginalising other Christians. Who? Yep, the poor, the disabled, and the immigrant Christians.

You’d think the former Archbishop of Canterbury would have something to say about those, rather than continuing banging on his own now-minority views about marriage equality.

This arrest has been brought to you courtesy of Persil

police

It has come out in today’s Guardian that our local police force is putting out to private sector tender a significant number of its core services – an effective privatisation of the police. “Private companies could take responsibility for investigating crimes, patrolling neighbourhoods and even detaining suspects under a radical privatisation plan being put forward by two [...]

I’m calling for a boycott – of boycotts

People who are pissed off with the News of the World and people who buy it failing to intersect on a Venn diagram

Like all good left-leaning liberal types, I am personally boycotting the News of the World for its phone hacking scandal (and by extension all the other Murdoch empire media products), and also at the same time boycotting the council’s collection of rubbish because the council uses Veolia to process the rubbish, who are apparently corporately [...]

Political irregular verbs

House of Lords

We all know about irregular verbs from when we learned French at school – I debate sensibly, you argue pointless, he/she rants aggressively. In politics now we have We scrutinise legislation carefully, They filibuster; We protect the Primacy of the Commons, They Ride Roughshod Over The Constitution. So whilst Labour peers have spent the last [...]

Unacceptable train overcrowding to get worse, MPs say

Overcrowding on trains in England and Wales will get substantially worse over the next four years despite rises in ticket prices, a report by MPs says. The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) said the Department for Transport’s own plans suggested targets for increasing passenger places would be missed. It’s good that MPs have finally realised there’s a [...]

Been underbilled for your tax? You don’t have to pay the extra!

“About £2bn was underpaid via the Pay as You Earn (PAYE) system in the past two years, with about 1.4 million people owing an average of £1,500 each. But £1.8bn has also been overpaid and some 4.3 million people will get a rebate because they have paid too much. Treasury minister David Gauke said that in the [...]

The latest salvo in the War Against Jargon

“Wellderly, webinar, disbenefits and under-capacitated are among new forms of jargon being used by the public sector, a survey has revealed. Such impenetrable phrases are on a list of banned words published by the Local Government Association (LGA)”. It seems to have become a new biennial news story about office jargon, especially in councils: Why [...]

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