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Friday, July 01, 2005

 

Cromwell would be proud

Looks like New Labour are about to pass another unenforceable law. You know, I feel sorry for the poor sods who will have the job of enforcing this Religious Hatred bill if it ever gets onto the statute books. Whoever thought that this would be a good idea has to be a complete and utter fuckwit of the first order. They lack a fundamental understanding of human intercultural tolerance.

New Labour are actually creating a hothouse situation where religious hatred will be driven underground and find, within a newly repressed wellspring of free speech, a reservoir of volcanic hatred. I would like to make it perfectly clear right now that I did not vote for these guys.

Within my bunch of mates at work, we have a number of represented religious beliefs, including Moslem and Christian. Everybody gets on because we can all defuse our cross-cultural tensions by cracking jokes about our belief systems and ourselves. Laughter is the social grease which allows a wide range of belief systems to coexist in an enclosed space without punch ups. Yet, this is the very vent that the current government wish to close.

This bill means that I will not be able to go and see one of (The exceedingly funny) Moslem comedians. I will not be able to go and watch a play critical of Christianity. I may even, horror of horrors, have to hand over my much loved copy of Monty Python’s ‘Life of Brian’, and that’s not going to happen without a fight, I can tell you.

As far as inciting hatred is concerned, if someone is shouting abuse at you because you are Jewish / Moslem / Christian / Zoroastrian / Hindu / Jedi etcetera they should be nicked for conduct liable to cause a breach of the peace. The existing legislative framework to deal with hate crimes of that nature has been in force for some time.

Under the new bill, quoting certain passages out of various holy books could possibly land you in chokey. Parts of the Bible or the Al’Quran are quite vehement in their denouncement of those whose belief system differs from their own.

It’s a really bad can of worms to open folks, and I’m just glad I’m a Parking Enforcement Officer and not the poor bloody copper who gets tasked with arresting someone under this piece of half baked legal tat.

Next thing to happen, our Cromwellian government will want to ban Christmas, Easter or any part of the religious calendar. As for religious festivals, I say keep ‘em all. This way everyone gets their religious holiday (Derived literally from ‘Holy Day’) and we all rub along. Apart from the chav dickheads who can’t tolerate any viewpoint but their own educationally stunted world view.

The last time this kind of thing was tried was back in the time of the interregnum in 17th century England. Fortunately, it didn’t last long and the populace dug up Cromwells corpse and nailed it to a church door. The censorship of that time rapidly fell into disrepute and disuse and the populace all got back to business as usual. May the same happen to this lot, although maybe nailing them to a church / temple door might be a little extreme, for heavens sake, it might be a listed building.

Please check out the following links:

The Guardian Online
Evangelical Times
Socialist Worker
Times OnLine
The Scotsman
The Jedi’s View
The Daily Telegraph
Spiked

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Exasperated expatriate expostulations all the way from British Columbia, Canada. As if anyone really cared. Oh, I also watch Icelandic Volcanoes and seismic activity. Don't ask me why.

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