260 – 111

The Lords voted overwhelmingly in favour of the cross-party amendment to the Religious Hatred bill yesterday. This spectacular defeat will put a lot of pressure on the government, although there are no guarantees that the original bill will not be forced through using the Parliament Act.

Christian think tank Ekklesia has published a document on the proposed legislation highlighting its major flaws and also criticising some groups who oppose it: evangelical Christians, for their hypocrisy and alarmism; and secularists for not being more understanding about the extent to which religious delusions are ingrained into notions of “identity” among those afflicted with supernaturalistic world views.

Well worth a read, especially if you’ve never considered the theological arguments against censorship.


3 Responses to “260 – 111”

  1. Simon Barrow says:

    Ta, Dave. A small correction – if you re-read the relevant bit you’ll see that we do not criticise secularists. Rather we observe that a secular *culture* (that is, one where religious traditions of apprehension are increasingly unfamiliar) hasn’t understood the issue of identity adequately if it thinks you can just kick it into touch – and that doing so plays into the hands of fundamentalists. Tip of the iceberg, but one worth talking about. More generally, I fully respect the fact that most people here are vocal atheists. My purpose is to deploy arguments within my own tradition against censorship manipulation, demonstrating that while much religion is afflicted by naive supernaturalism, not all of it is (believe it or not!) and it can be reasoned with and about to the benefit of liberality. Cheers, Simon

  2. Monitor says:

    Thanks for the correction, Simon. And sorry for mis-reporting your position. Although that sentence was written only semi-seriously, I admit that I didn’t quite nail the nuance of your argument about the identity issue.

  3. Simon Barrow says:

    No worries… just want it understood that we (Ekklesia) are criticising ideas, not attacking people. Ok, off to nuance my tea ;-)