The question of whether Scientology is a 'religion like any other' is being discussed in the news as a result of the first Scientology wedding in the UK.
Tuesday, 14 January 2014
An Afghan has today been granted asylum in the UK on the basis of his atheist convictions. It is actually a little more complicated than this - he has been granted asylum because- as an apostate - his life would be in danger should he return to Afghanistan.
For the story see:
For the story see:
Monday, 18 November 2013
"Overt and Conspicuous: Religion and the Charter of Québec Values"
From the The Critical Religion Association
Parti Québécois presented a new bill, Bill 60, which seeks to enact the “Charter of Québec Values”. The proposed charter aims to prohibit the wearing of “overt and conspicuous” religious symbols by government officials and public servants.
See full story at: http://criticalreligion.org/2013/11/18/overt-and-conspicuous-religion-and-the-charter-of-quebec-values/
Thursday, 24 October 2013
Sunday, 20 October 2013
The article noted the following:
Magistrates (more acurately, the Magistrates' Assocation) are considering proposals (at the October AGM) to replace religious oaths and affirmations with a single oath for all defendants and witnesses. The motion was put forward by Iam Abrahams, a Magistrate from the Associations' Bristial and North Avon bench.
All those giving evidence in court would make a secular pledge which it is thought would make it fairer and more relevant for people to help them understand the importance of what they are saying.
Religious leaders, and supporters of the religious oath, have criticised the plans as an example of further destroying the history of Christianity in Britain, pointing out that people already have a chance to choose to take a non religious oath, the affirmation. (see http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/10358696/Bible-oath-could-be-scrapped-from-courts.html)
However, NSS welcomed the move:
"Stephen Evans, NSS campaigns manager, said: "Multiple religious and non-religious oaths unnecessarily make an issue out of a witness's religiosity in the courtroom. A single oath for all would protect witness of all religions and beliefs, including non-believers, from the potential religious prejudices of jurors. All witnesses should be on an equal footing, with cases decided on the evidence heard rather than the prejudices of those hearing it.
"Britain is not the Christian country it perhaps once was, so it is right that our institutions change to reflect this. Justice being done is the most important consideration, and this is a case where I'm sure most people of faith would be happy to swear the same oath as others, rather than insist that the legal system accommodate their religious preferences."
Nevetheless, according to the Telegraph today the proposals have been rejected; 'Magistrates throw out plan to ditch Bible oath'. See http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/10390829/Magistrates-throw-out-plan-to-ditch-Bible-oath.html
So, swearing on the Bible will continue to be a central part of giving evidence in court. The oath will not be 'modernised' as had been proposed.
Will this be the end of the matter? I'm no so sure...
Christian care worker is taking a case to the Court of Appeal this week to argue that she has the right not to work on a Sunday. For the full telegraph article, see http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/10391853/Christian-sues-over-Sunday-shifts.html
Wednesday, 28 August 2013
Just seen this article in the Daily Record (Scotland)
"Passenger's fury after airport security staff asked him to state his religion"
According to the paper, Iain McGill was travelling through Edinburgh Airport when he was asked to state his faith after being picked at random for a full body scan. For the full story see: http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/passengers-fury-airport-security-staff-1780706
I haven't been able to find this story reported elsewhere. I would be interested to hear if anyone else has seen a similar article. If so, please leave a comment below. Thanks.