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Friday, 27 March 2009

Mary, mother of reason

A British Member of the European Parliament (MEP) is in hot water for daring to say that the Roman Catholic Church is extreme.

Obviously, some people don’t like their gooey-eyed view of religion – and this Devil’s tribe in particular – to be sullied by the use of inconvenient facts.

According to EU Politics News, MEP Mary Honeyball blogged her opinions, describing the Catholic Church as an “extreme Christian organisation”.

It’s being seen as a response to a recent article by religious nutter and former Prime Minister Tony Blair in the Church of England Newspaper, in which he said Christianity was at risk of being sidelined by an “aggressively secularist” society.

Christianity sidelined? With goodness knows how many Christian schools, 26 bishops as of right in the House of Lords, money paid on this and that religious initiative right, left and centre? Get real, Blair.

Anyway, Honeyball had this to say:

I have seen very obvious attempts to bring Christianity into the European Parliament during my nine years as an MEP.

Silvio Berlusconi attempted to appoint an intensely religious Catholic, Rocco Buttiglione, as a European commissioner.

Though his efforts were thankfully rebuffed by the majority of MEPs due to Buttiglione’s anti-homosexual and anti-abortion stance, religion had reared its head. Likewise there was a strong movement to include a reference to “god” in the ill-fated European constitutional treaty.

Meanwhile back in the UK the Roman Catholic Church and other extreme Christian organisations tried to defeat parts of the 2008 Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act.

Activities such as these are not the mark of an aggressively secular society.

There has, in fact, been a marked increase in political lobbying by Christian organisations over the last ten years. We are getting more of it in the public square not less.

I for one object to this. I do not believe Christianity should have the kind of privileged place in our public life which it so manifestly does. In this article Blair is quoted as saying, ‘But in general terms in British society there is a risk that people see faith as a personal eccentricity’.

Faith is and should remain exactly that: a personal eccentricity, not something to be forced on others in any way whatsoever.

And for expressing her opinion, she’s been roundly condemned by other MEPs – all, one assumes, Christians.

A German centre-right MEP, Elmar Brok, said her description of the RC Church was “absolutely ridiculous”.

“Let’s be clear about this: the church plays a very important role in society,” he said, “every bit as important as, say, trade unions and politicians, and that is how it should be.”

Should be? Really?

“I totally disagree with her comments. They are intolerant and shows that she understands nothing about the Catholic Church.”

What is there to understand about a fascistic organisation that denies its followers the right to have power over their own reproduction, that denies them the right to fall in love and express their love sexually if they happen to be of the same sex, that tries to deny scientists the right to experiment on microscopic blobs called stem cells, that seeks to prevent abortions in even the most extreme circumstances?

Honeyball has also, we learn come under fire from her own party colleagues in Westminster, including the MP Stephen Pound, who said, “What she does not seem to realise is that many people seek to become politicians because of their Catholicism.”

The relevance of that fatuous comment being? Does that diminish her claim that the Catholic Church is extreme? Anyway, we need fewer Catholics in power, not more. They’re monsters.

And a Northwest MP, Jim Dobbin, was also critical, saying, “She has no place in the Labour party because she demeans the beliefs of many secularists.”

Er . . . Sorry, but I think many secularists would actually agree with her, wouldn’t they? Still if he doesn’t want to be thought of as having the thought processes of a mule, perhaps he should change his name from Dobbin.

As is obvious from even a glance at any news story that has the words religion and secularist in it, the Christians and other members of the deluded herd are happy to dole out criticism when secularists actually get some airtime and column inches, but find it hard to take the criticism.

Good on yer, Mary. Keep up the criticism.

1 comment:

Baal's Bum said...

Hail Mary
Put her forward for the next premier.