Tolerance
Civil Liberties

Equality legislation is breeding a class of intolerant whingers

 

I have a friend who is a teacher and works in a secondary school. The head, who is known to have little sympathy for those of a religious persuasion, made it clear a while ago that this individual is banned from discussing their faith or mentioning God. My friend is anything but a proselytising zealot, but he is confident in his beliefs and happy to discuss them openly in appropriate situations. Sensing that there is someone who is not afraid to disagree on such matters, the head has decided that it is much easier simply to shut that area of conversation down, and to emphasise his position of authority further, he has given this particular teacher the cold shoulder. Understandably, my friend is demotivated and desperate to leave, and his health is suffering too.

This is one story among many of the struggles associated with expressing religious beliefs in the workplace. Anyone who has a religious faith has to deal with this issue on a daily basis. How much do we allow our faith into those public places we inhabit? When do we deem it appropriate for our faith to guide our actions and words, and when for the sake of keeping the peace do we keep it hidden? Workplaces have rules, either explicit or unwritten, which necessarily regulate our behaviour to a certain extent. But religion does not fit neatly into little boxes however hard we try. This is all too apparent in the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s (EHRC’s) latest report, which has been given the rather functional title of Religion or belief in the workplace and service delivery.

Anyone who knows more than a handful of people with jobs will most likely be aware of at least one story similar to that of my friend’s. Workplaces are rarely benign when it comes to public disclosures of faith or deeply-held convictions. The EHRC appears to be belatedly waking up to the fact that everything is not entirely well on this front, despite all of the equality legislation that has been enacted over the last few years. Sadly, from the report’s wording, it would seem apparent that this desire and drive to see all of us fully equal is actually doing more harm than good. As the Archbishop of Canterbury said a few weeks ago, “Equality as an aim in itself through government action is doomed not merely to defeat but to totalitarianism.”

The fundamental problem is that many aspects of life are just not comparable. In particular, by dumping religion together with sexuality and all of the other protected characteristics, talk moves from mutual respect to protection of rights. Tolerance becomes enforced and equality gives the presumption of equal weighting. Your views and beliefs become just as valid as mine, and if I perceive that you are forcing them upon me, I have the right to demand action through the law to remedy the grievance. Equality has become a weapon to beat down anyone who I see as being treated preferentially, even if there are justifiable reasons for this.

The 2,483 submissions contain plenty of legitimate concerns, fears and examples of mistreatment, but they also demonstrate the shallow and loaded complaints that can be raised when legalism combines with a persecution mentality:

  • Claims of unwelcome ‘preaching’ or proselytising, which can be little more than mentioning religious beliefs.
  • Religious colleagues using spaces (eg meeting rooms) that were not meant solely for religious purposes. This is no different to any other workplace group holding a meeting.
  • Faith school admission policies considered to be advantageous to people with a particular religious belief – eg favouring those who regularly attend a church.
  • National holidays, which are a distinct part of our national makeup, coinciding with Christian festivals and therefore requiring many non-Christians to be off work and schools at these times.
  • Restricted opening hours of shops for religious reasons (Sunday trading laws).
  • Christians having preferential treatment in town centre parking on Sundays.
  • Complaints that the media is too religious (really?)
  • Hospital chaplains provided on a religious basis and therefore not being accessible to humanists and atheists (it’s hard to imagine this ever being the case).
  • Humanists and atheists feeling excluded in workplaces which held prayer meetings or events in religious buildings.
  • Atheist professors concerned that university graduation ceremonies had religious elements.

Equality has not only had the inevitable effect of some ‘rights’ trumping others when they come into conflict, but also self-generated offence trumping respect. This is then used by some groups to push their agenda through force, instead of reasoned persuasion. The dream of full equality can only come about when everyone conforms to a single paradigm and religion is marginalised. This is the secularist approach to toleration, and our equality legislation is giving it traction.

Faced with an ever expanding range of competing demands and the ease by which some complain of victimisation, the report understandably finds that many employers are aiming for social harmony by prohibiting all forms of religious expression. Censoriousness might solve some disputes, but grievances will inevitably continue to simmer beneath the surface, storing up resentment for the future. It also conflicts with human rights legislation and is not a model that should be encouraged.

If people who have a religious faith are having to suppress a big part of their lives, and others have become so ultra-sensitive that they find ways to be offended, then we have a problem. And we do.

Tolerance is increasingly an excuse for intolerance, and equality legislation is proving to be of little help. Indeed, it is causing widespread intimidation, confusion and fear. It has done next to nothing to increase religious literacy and mutual understanding, which is the key to lasting progress. Inevitably we all lose out, and the end result is division and mistrust.

This report contains overarching truths which throw light on a situation that has been shunted into the darkness for far too long. Faith is not a dirty word, and religion is never going to go away. We need to build new channels of discussion and openness rather than shutting down existing ones. Nor can we allow those who have an anti-faith agenda bully everyone into submission. If we are going to have responsible, healthy and productive workplaces, the last thing we need are intolerant whingers with axes to grind calling all the shots.

  • dannybhoy

    Jesus said, “Be wise as serpents and harmless as doves..” Matthew 10: 16.
    Christians are in the world, but not of it. We are citizens of the Kingdom of God and citizens of the UK.
    Even as a non conformist evangelical I believe we have to be careful about how we share our faith in the workplace. I really regret the passing of open air meetings, knocking on doors inviting people to church and other expressions of evangelical outreach.
    Your teacher friend seems to have the right idea. We speak up when asked what we believe, and state our opinions on various issues “because as a Christian that’s what I believe.”

    Doing our job to the best of our ability and “as to the Lord” (Colossians 3: 23) is also an act of witness, as is putting ourselves out to help a colleague. Offering to pray with a patient or offering counselling can be in my opinion, an act of unintended abuse.

    • Dominic Stockford

      You could be a non-conformist evangelical pastor – then it is your job to be clear and robust on faith. Having said that, everyone then ‘knows’ that you are a swivel-eyed loon, including quite a few of those who attend your own congregation…

  • sarky

    Nobody should be discriminated against because of their religious beliefs. They should not be excluded or denied promotion etc etc. However, there is a big difference between taking action against an employee just for being a christian (for example) and taking action against a christian employee who continually tries to share their faith and is vocal in their opinion on things such as SSM. I’m sorry but you have to understand that people should not be made to feel uncomfortable by your words or actions. This works both ways and a christian should not be made to feel uncomfortable by the words of an atheist.
    It’s about mutual respect and understanding. Work is a place for work and if your colleagues show no interest in your beliefs then just leave it.

    • Little Black Censored

      …people should not be made to feel uncomfortable…
      This principle is being taken much too far. Discomfort is even being described as not feeling safe. We are becoming a nation of wets.

    • Anton

      Yes it is about mutual respect and understanding. But it should not be a matter for legislation. We have to expect to work with a few people whose company we would not seek out in the pub; it’s called life.

    • carl jacobs

      So, your understanding of “mutual respect and understanding” would seem to be that I should shut the hell up about my religion and keep it to myself. Along with any opinion I might possess that might be reasonably inferred to proceed from that religion. I am however free to discuss any subject and offer any opinion so long as both have been vetted as not causing a vague and non-specifiable condition called “discomfort” among someone who feels it is his right to be free of any manifestation of religion anywhere. Your concept of “mutual toleration and respect” would seem to be that I can check a box on a form indicating religious preference and not be punished for the answer.

      Work is not just a place for work, sarky. It is a place where human interactions occur. Those interactions are going to involve non-work subjects. If those non-work interactions don’t occur, your work environment is going to be sterile and dead, and people won’t want to work there. People talk about all sorts of things at work – share all sorts of parts of their lives. Example. Several months ago, a woman at work expressed extreme concern about the Ebola virus scare and the possibility of becoming infected. She asked me (among a group of others) my opinion on the subject. My response was decidedly religious in nature. Now, I don’t much care if that answer would have made a listener “uncomfortable” because he didn’t want to be confronted with a worldview he rejects. Mutual respect and understanding would require him to suffer in his discomfort for the moment. It’s not fatal.

      But the logic of mutual respect and understanding often goes like this: “The mere existence of religion offends me, and especially your religion. So ‘tolerance’ means we let you stay here only so long as you keep it to yourself. If you wish to participate in normal office conversation you may do so only if you express vetted opinions. In return we promise to not publicly identify you as the ignorant self-righteous bastard that you are.”

      For this we are supposed to be grateful.

      • sarky

        Well if you’re gonna stick your head above the parapet, dont complain when your shot at!

  • preacher

    My own feelings are that it’s essential to be sensitive to those around us & if we are following Christ’s teaching & His Holy Spirit dwells within us this will not be difficult.
    Jesus never forced His teaching on anyone, yet He was/is without doubt the most controversial person alive.
    Our lives should reflect our faith & belief. We must never be cowed into silence on such an important issue as the future of our fellow humans in eternity.
    If people see that we are different & have something that they need they will make it known to us.
    Real Christianity is radical & we need to be strong to follow our Lord, but if we are willing, He will provide wisdom, strength & opportunity to make the gospel known.

  • Albert

    The head, who is known to have little sympathy for those of a religious persuasion, made it clear a while ago that this individual is banned from discussing their faith or mentioning God.

    This individual, or everyone? If it’s everyone, then the Head must struggle to fulfil his legal requirement for a daily act of worship.

    • Busy Mum

      Most schools neglect that requirement anyway – the law has not been enforced – and because it hasn’t been the Bishop of Oxford has called for it to be scrapped.

      • Albert

        But given the law, the Head’s position looks pretty dangerous. But yes, with Bishops like Oxford around who needs secularists?

  • G.K. Chesterton observed: “The modern world is full of the old Christian virtues gone mad. The virtues have gone mad because they have been isolated from each other and are wandering alone.”

    I think this is what we see when it comes to tolerance. As you say rights will come into conflict – how do you deal with that? I don’t think our secular world has an answer, because it doesn’t have any overarching system or narrative in which to put competing truth claims.

    We shouldn’t be surprised when the world turns hostile to Christianity, because that is simply the natural state of mankind. Once you take away the rational foundations of equality, they get corrupted and used against the one who gave the principle in the first place.

  • Shadrach Fire

    Dannyboy has it right that we should be harmless as doves.

    There is definitely a need for sensitivity when among others. In the workplace our attitude and our demeanor should be our testimony so that others ask what is it that is different about us.

    A word fitly spoken and in due season is like apples of gold in settings of silver. Proverbs 25:11
    A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it! Proverbs 15:23

  • CliveM

    Years ago I had a discussion with a teacher friend who dismissed my suggestion that teachers should not be allowed to bring their politics into the classroom. He saw no problem with it and certainly from memory a sizeable number of my teachers did.

    So I wonder, is it just theology that this headmaster bans or is it ideology as well, because frankly I don’t see what a big difference in principle. Why should you be allowed to discuss your Marxism, but not Christianity? It’s all part of the fabric of daily and national life.

    I would place a small bet that pokitics hasn’t been banned, in which case I would suggest the Headmaster is indeed a bigot and hypocrit.

    • carl jacobs

      Ideology isn’t the problem. This is at its root a religious conflict. This post-modern age worships the self. A cardinal dogma of the religion of Self is that man is the ultimate sovereign in his private universe. The assertion of divine authority over the Self is therefore an heretical assertion according to this dogma. That’s why it is so contentious. Infallible dogma has been contradicted.

      • Busy Mum

        Exactly – nobody wants to hear that ‘all have sinned and come short of the glory of God’.

      • CliveM

        Carl

        I read your comment and thought “yes he’s right”. Then I thought about it more and thought “but”!

        I think this is about sovereignty and to a certain extent it is about personal sovereignty. However I think it is also about the State and how it feels that it is the only entity that had the right to make demands that over ride your sovereignty. Christianity is a threat because it says “yes, but” and the but is the Sovereignty of God. And this is a threat.

        Faith is fine as long as it doesn’t make demands. Which is why the crystal worshippers aren’t a threat. Their spirituality makes no demands on the individual.

        • alternative_perspective

          If a Muslim came up to you and said you shouldn’t drink alcohol at all, you’d probably dismiss her.
          If a small child came up to you and told you to close your potty mouth, you probably would.
          Commands which lack authority are ignored, those with implicit authority aren’t. Authority may be embodied in various forms but ultimately all authority comes from God, the more remote the embodiment the more easily accepted it is.
          It is especially hard for those with authority because the ultimate authority holds them accountable and at some innate level I think we all accept this. And this is one reason why those in authority react to violently to Christian claims: it reminds me that they will be held accountable.

          • dannybhoy

            And this is one reason why those in authority react to violently to
            Christian claims: it reminds me that they will be held accountable.

            Not sure about that one. A lot of people do not take Christianity seriously anymore. When they are being kind they regard as inoffensive, kindly intentioned, woolly minded types; always ready for a hug or limp handshake, along with that rather peculiar, sad and pained sort of smile* ..
            If we’re keen and reasonably articulate, we are pigeonholed under “swivel eyed loonies..”
            * I think one has to attend Christian smiling classes..

          • DanJ0

            I really don’t think so. That’s just wishful thinking.

      • dannybhoy

        It’s also a potential catalyst for friction in the workplace, which is probably of more concern to the management..

        • DanJ0

          I think that’s exactly it, actually.

          • CliveM

            I laughed when I read this. BUT ( and I can’t think of a nice way of saying this) really when you get to the root of it, is the problem religion or the fact that we allow people into the country that are culturally completely out of sympathy with our values.

            20 years ago we could have had a chat about faith and if someone pissed you off you tell them to shut up and the worst they’d say is that you will burn in hell! Not nice but not particularly unsettling. We do live in an era where the old tollerences are harder, and I believe this is being manipulated.

        • carl jacobs

          There are two things you can do with friction. You can suppress the cause or you can suppress the reaction. Those are not equally benign alternatives.

          Several years back, our managers received some diversity training. It consisted of a series of cases studies in which managers were presented with hypothetical situations, and discussed how to properly handle them. A friend of mine let me see the training material because he thought I would be interested.

          One of the case studies involved casual conversation before a team meeting in which team members were discussing the movie “Rent.” One member said he liked the movie and recommended it. To which another member responded that she didn’t like the movie and found the homosexual themes troubling. [Duh duh dunnnnnnnn] What is a good manager to do?

          The “correct” answer was for the manager to come down on that team member with both feet. She is not allowed to express such an opinion publicly. And that defines the “removal of friction” in my company. I am free to say any positive thing I like about homosexuality. Does that actually cause the friction to go away? No. In fact, it inverts the stress. It simply shifts the burden of opprobrium. I am not free to express certain opinions, but others are now free to hold certain opinions about me. And to publicly express them. How can it be otherwise, since the company has officially sanctioned it?

          The company doesn’t care. It simply wants certain people to shut up. It isn’t actually removing friction so much as shifting the load to different load-bearing members. It’s not seeking to avoid conflict so much as it is seeking to transform the nature of the conflict. It is enforcing a different set of norms.

          • DanJ0

            Another example not involving the forum bete noire might be someone expressing the opinion that the UK ought not to allow immigration because it is polluting our culture. What’s a good manager to do there? In my company where there are foreign nationals from Poland, Romania, Spain, Italy, Greece, Hong Kong, India, Pakistan, Egypt, New Zealand, Lithuania, and Nigeria, I think I know what would happen if someone complained.

          • IanCad

            “—team meeting in which team members–“
            Therein lies an endorsement of the religion of equality.

          • dannybhoy

            The company doesn’t care. It simply wants certain people to shut up.
            Exactly.
            Because the company is a business, not a debating society.
            It provides products or services and employs a workforce to do achieve it. It wants a happy workforce focussed on the business at hand. Anything that threatens that harmony is a threat to the business.
            I don’t have a problem with that.

      • Coniston

        Jeremiah 18:12

    • dannybhoy

      No one would dare ban pokitics Clive…. 🙂
      Pokitics is ‘safe’ because it can be discussed objectively. The danger of discussing religion is that it can only be discussed in a meaningful way by exposing some of the ‘inner me’, and doing that in a work situation could prove fakal..

      • DanJ0

        Where I work, we’re vaguely discouraged from discussing both politics and religion. Big company ethos, you see.

        • dannybhoy

          Well that’s only sensible. I would imagine drilling holes in macaroni takes a great deal of concentration….. 🙂

        • CliveM

          DanJo

          Most companies I have worked for allow private political or religious discussions in tea break. None would allow anything more formal then that.

          • DanJ0

            We’re sort of discouraged because it’s a potential minefield in HR terms. Who wants to have to deal with some HR muppets just because someone within earshot complains?

          • CliveM

            Well that’s a good point!

      • CliveM

        Politics is safe! You’ve never been near me and my mates when we are having a political discussion!!

        But let’s explore that a bit. I bet even politics will be censored. I thing the politics of the left will be encouraged. Provided you don’t mind the ridicule, you will get away with being a LibDem. Tories? Well I bet a few people in the staff room will snub you. As for UKIP, well don’t have any promotion ambitions! BNP, you’ll lose your job.

        So here we have it, BNP and Christianity lumped in together. Equally unwelcome, equally banned. And with both equally opening you up to dismissal.

        Strange that believing in the ‘sky fairies’ should be seen to be so dangerous! You’d think they were worried there was something in it?

        • dannybhoy

          You have mates…??

          • CliveM

            Oh DB and I thought we were getting on so well!

          • dannybhoy

            🙂

      • CliveM

        Ps is your typewriter ok?

        • dannybhoy

          .Y7;*e%s [email protected]#nkuy~*ou..
          Wl//h£”y?

          • CliveM

            I think you need to change your ribbon!

          • dannybhoy

            My wife says it looks quite fetching..

          • CliveM

            I hope that not all your wearing? ;0)

          • dannybhoy

            I have been known in moments if madness to do the ironing sans clothing. I gave it up when the steam iron developed a nasty and unsociable habit of spitting.
            Oh yes, and the neighbours started complaining…

      • Dominic Stockford

        I felt far from safe at the last election, standing outside a polling station being verbally abused at great length – far worse than anything I had to put up with as a referee on the football field. I’m surprised he didn’t hit me with his limpdem bicycle…

        • dannybhoy

          Who were you representing Dominic? In my Tory days I tried to stay in good terms with all the party candidates.

          • Dominic Stockford

            I and the Tory candidates got on like a house on fire – the limpdems ignored us both. I stood for Ukip, but now with The Christian Party.

          • CliveM

            I remember an election when the Tories had placed a caravan outside outside a polling station. It started raining heavily and all the canvassers were invited in. Only the LibDems stayed outside.

            Miserable sods!

          • Dominic Stockford

            When I went to the count the local Limpdem MLA (and a councillor, and his wife a councillor, and he leads the limpdem rump on the council – add up those ‘expenses’ and you’ll find they clean up at least as much as an MP!) – he said to me, “You haven’t won.”. I bit my lip and refrained from replying “And I hope you haven’t either.” Ironically he only got back in as a councillor because I took over 300 votes (he got about 1100) and he scraped in by about 50 or 60.

          • dannybhoy

            Ah yes, I remember you mentioning that recently. You were going through the conversion process at the time I do believe..
            It’s pretty tricky to get a balance on our responsiblities as Christians first and then citizens. But we have our freedoms to be Christians because of our society, and there are Christians active within political parties. Also even being the Christian Party doesn’t necessarily guarantee you will all agree on policies or anything else.

          • Dominic Stockford

            Indeed, much of what you say is correct. Although we will agree on the inerrancy and the infallibility of the Bible, and that Jesus is the only answer to the world’s problems. Membership involves signing up to those declarations. That is a comforting start.

          • dannybhoy

            Good on you Dominic!
            I remember years ago in the US the Christians came up with ‘The Moral Majority’.
            I never thought it was a good idea.
            Even “Christian America” couldn’t use its numbers to impose its will on non Christian America. It always breeds resentment and hypocrisy.
            It is interesting to note that our God nearly always uses an individual to lead, whether in revival or social reform.
            We will never have full agreement this side of eternity. However, as long as the glory of God and obedience to His leading remains uppermost in our minds and hearts, with our egos firmly submitted to the Holy Spirit, great things can happen.

  • Anton

    Did anybody else notice that Nigel Farage recently hinted that the EHRC would actually be abolished under UKIP? Good riddance to a bunch of jobsworths who have made a good living off the taxpayer telling us what we can’t say.

    • dannybhoy

      I hope so, I really do hope so.

    • Phil R

      We could have a bonfire of the quangos

      How about that for an election pledge…….

  • Politically__Incorrect

    The word “equality” is becoming one of those irritating examples of political Newspeak which everyone knows has little meaning but is meant to be a cornerstone of our society. Like most well-intentioned words it ends up being hijacked by one side as a hammer to hit the other. It’s a bit like the word “bigot”, which some consider synonymous with right wingers and the religious. In fact the word is just as applicable to some on the political left and some atheists.

    The political class have also hijacked the word as a bit of doubleplus good pap to weave into their statements, a subliminal message to mellow the message and woo te listener. Equality is one of those unobtainable utopian notions that makes everyone demand it while nobody really gets any. Instead, a lot can be achieved through mutual respect, an acceptance that the other person has a different view without trying to punish them for it.

    Equality legislation, under both this government and previous ones, has fostered this discontent while solving nothing. somebody once said that politics is the art of the possible. Well, universal equality is impossible, so politicians might as well stop building divisive legislation around it

  • DanJ0

    Articles: “If people who have a religious faith are having to suppress a big part of their lives, and others have become so ultra-sensitive that they find ways to be offended, then we have a problem. And we do.”

    Perhaps that applies to aspects of people’s lives other than a religious one, too. Afterall, there’s nothing particularly special about religious beliefs other than that they’re often bound up in someone’s identity.

    • Dominic Stockford

      “they’re often bound up in someone’s identity…”

      Or rather, someone’s destiny is bound up in them…

      • DanJ0

        Destined to be sacked, by the sound of it.

  • Busy Mum

    Why would atheists and humanists want to access a hospital chaplain?! Presumably because when the going gets tough they discover that atheism or humanism isn’t quite the ticket.

    • Politically__Incorrect

      … or to find a pretext to complain about him to the Equalities Commission

    • CliveM

      I did see an interview on the BBC with a humanist Chaplain. I knew he was a humanist because he was whinging

      • dannybhoy

        Lol!

    • DanJ0

      Is that what hospital chaplains do then? Talk about their god rather than provide a listening ear to whomever?

      • CliveM

        When I visited my father in the Hospice when he was dying, the Chaplian came round, asked what I did and had a go at me for the company I was working for at the time!!

        It was a female CofE Priest, suspect she was very right on and PC.

        • DanJ0

          Fur farmer for the fashion industry?

          • CliveM

            Lol!
            I was working for BAE at a time they were selling Hawk trainers to India. Not something I was working on. It was a bit controversial as there were heightened tensions with Pakistan.

            She was actually being highly racist, as she assumed that India being poor and illiterate ( which I think were her views) must be wanting them to attack Pakistani villages. All very condescending. Actually they flew F16’s but had no dedicated jet trainer so went straight from pistons to jet fighters. Massive casualty rate in training!!

          • DanJ0

            “Actually they flew F16’s but had no dedicated jet trainer so went straight from pistons to jet fighters. Massive casualty rate in training!!”

            :O

          • CliveM

            Also very expensive which I suspect may have worried the Indians more………..

          • sarky

            Like when they fitted ejector seats in helicopters!

          • CliveM

            ROFL

          • Uncle Brian

            Or was she just saying that only white folks are allowed to buy expensive toys?

          • CliveM

            She probably disapproved of defence full stop.

            But I think she felt supplying a jet trainer would lead to a nuclear Armageddon. That seemed to be her argument.

        • Dominic Stockford

          She’d get a 2 word reply, neither of them polite.
          And my excuse would be ‘I’m ill, and she upset me’.

          • CliveM

            Lol. I didn’t care to be honest, I just wondered what she would have done if I was the one who was dying!

      • The Explorer

        During my extended stay in hospital I filled in a tick-box form that included C of E somewhere on it. I was seen by two chaplains. The first had nothing to do with the form, and came in the capacity of a hospital vistor.. He wore a dog collar, so patients had the option of shaking their heads and not speaking to him. Religion was not mentioned at all – to me, or anyone in my vicinity – just how we were, and how our families were coping, how long we were in for, pending operations, that sort of thing. ( I had another hospital visior in the form of a woman taking a survey, and two teams of medical students.)
        The second chaplain, in response to the form, called to ask if I would like to book bedside communion. I said yes for the following week, but in practice went home the day before it was due.

      • Busy Mum

        A chaplain who listens to anyone without attempting to convert them to their own faith clearly doesn’t have much, if any, of that faith. The alternative is that the chaplain doesn’t care at all about the person to whom he is listening.

    • Dominic Stockford

      I think they want a humanist or atheist chaplain, though what on earth they would even find to talk about I don;t know. maybe they could look out of the window and think nice thoughts together – like at ‘humanist funerals’.

      • CliveM

        I can just imagine the words of comfort “well your f@”?&d”!

        • Dominic Stockford

          Am I allowed to admit to laughing? Or is that proof of my intolerance?

          • CliveM

            I’m not sure why it would make you intolerant!

        • sarky

          Pretty much what a normal chaplain would say to an atheist isn’t it?? But in slightly less blunt language.

  • Busy Mum

    Nobody ought to be complaining about Christians parking legally on a Sunday whilst Muslims park illegally on a Friday – and get away with it.

    • Dominic Stockford

      And in far larger numbers, sadly.

  • Busy Mum

    I’ve heard of non-Christians who are more than happy to have the time off at Christmas and Easter…and then get more time off ‘for religious observance’ during Ramadan, Eid, Diwali etc…it ought to be the Christians complaining about this inequality.

    • CliveM

      You know I worked with someone who had a tantrum over having an Easter Holiday. Religious you see, not right!
      I never understood it, even if I lost my faith I’d still want all the religious holidays going!

      • Uncle Brian

        Perhaps the company you were both working for could have made special arrangements for him to come in and work every day over the Easter weekend. If he’d asked them nicely, of course.

        • CliveM

          Not allowed, Health & Safety doesn’t allow lone working!

    • sarky

      They do get extra time off, but take out from their annual leave, so what’s your problem?

      • Busy Mum

        Not if it’s for religious observance, they don’t.
        And how about non-Christians accepting double pay on a Sunday?

        • sarky

          Yes they do! !!

  • preacher

    It seems that many people on both sides of the debate have become entrenched, a position that is stationary, non productive & doomed to failure.
    If we have nothing better to offer this World than our own reflections & beliefs with a siege mentality then we are on the wrong track.
    As Christians we should surely understand that the World Needs what we have got without having to force it upon them.
    Our job is to be a living witness to the gospel. If someone has Cancer & a sure cure is found, the queue will stretch for miles, even if some aspects of the cure are hard, or uncomfortable. When the sufferers know it works, nothing will hold them back. We are the living proof that Christianity works. But we must prove it by our lives.

    • Shadrach Fire

      Preach it brother. If we have nothing better to offer than the world, then are faith is worthless.

    • IanCad

      A couple of most excellent comments from you today Mr Preacher.
      Thanks.

  • Royinsouthwest

    In an article in the Daily Mail recently a journalist claimed that years ago when he asked Trevor Phillips why he had taken the position of head of the EHRC, Phillips replied that it was his ambition to be able to close it down when its work was no longer necessary.

    Of course we will never entirely get rid of racism and similar forms of prejudice, human nature being what it is, but the question needs to be asked, is the EHRC doing more harm than good? Perhaps the time has come to close it down.

    There would be no need to abolish the law against racial discrimination, although it might need to be revised, After all, we have laws against burglary but we don’t have a commission for investigating burglary. Crimes of burglary are investigated by the police. Cases of unlawful discrimination could also be dealt with by the normal legal process.

    • carl jacobs

      It’s important to shift one’s perspective on this matter. Don’t think of it in terms of courts and competing rights. Think of the ECHR and like bodies as an Office of Secular Inquisition. Their collective purpose is to enforce secular moral orthodoxy, and the requirement to enforce orthodoxy never goes away. Once you see this in terms of the coercive imposition of a worldview, it all makes complete sense.

    • Anton

      How I wish that crimes of burglary were investigated by the police! They are far too busy responding within 5 minutes to 999 calls made by gay provocateurs of street preachers. This happened to someone I know personally.

      • DanJ0

        Because gay provocateurs are clogging the 999 switchboards all the time.

        • Royinsouthwest

          You are almost certainly right in implying that 999 switchboards are not normally clogged up by calls made by gay provocateurs, but the important point made by Anton was his claim that when the police do get such calls they respond to them with more alacrity than they do to reports of many things, such as burglary, that have always been crimes.

          • DanJ0

            The “far too busy” bit inspired my sarcasm.

  • Mike Stallard

    Do not underestimate the power of University and Teacher Training where God is decidedly dead and Foucault and Nietzsche have taken his place. Chaos is normal and any form of any religion is totally forbidden.
    Climate Change, gay rights, and Foucault’s love of the excluded have taken His place. And the new breed of intellectuals is just as intolerant of any form of questioning as Torquemada was or Isis is.
    I have just had two months of this sort of nonsense. And what a shame! They do not know what they are missing.

    • The Explorer

      One questtion ALL religions? Even Islam? Everything else sounds spot on.

      • Mike Stallard

        Yup, ALL religions. they are seen as superstition and all they do is to produce wars and torture. Every single one. Even Methodism.

        • Guest

          And your intolerance is of course fine and dandy, your faith, as it’s not religion-based (capitalism) should be able to be intolerance all it wants, etc.

    • Guest

      So;

      No, not everyone loves your Foucault and Nietzsche, you’re talking nonsense. There’s no assumption of Christian, that’s all.

      As for your problem with science and demand that there be intolerance breaching the equality act…yea, you *are* whining.

      So you got kicked out of teacher training? Aww.

  • The Explorer

    The list of bullet points. Claims of unwelcome preaching, yet hospital chaplains not available to humanists or atheists. Do I sense a tension there?

  • The Explorer

    Tell athesits adn humanists to become bishops in the C of E. They’ll feel right at home.

    • Shadrach Fire

      Most Bishops in the CofE are humanists aren’t they.

    • CliveM

      Cheap shot!

      • Martin

        Clive

        But very accurate.

    • Anton

      At least atheists and humanists are honest about doubting the claims of the gospel, and do not take a salary from the collection plates of the faithful. Whereas liberal bishops…

  • Inspector General

    Fight the good fight, chaps, and don’t let the bastards get you down.

    Nobody said it was going to be easy, this life. If you’re not up to it, then knuckle under and keep your head down. If you’re made of sterner stuff, get out there and say it as it is. We have God’s truth on our side, and that counts for all. And nobody stands alone – we are there with you.

    Right, having said that, how do we deal with the headmaster. How about cutting the rotter’s ear off with a sword as practiced by the founder of Christ’s church. But then again, maybe it’s not such a good idea, and your Inspector will be up before the courts charged with incitement to violence. Here, that’s it, tell him you are praying for him daily that he abandons his devilish ways and becomes a servant to God. That should really pee the swine off…

    • CliveM

      Yep being nice usually does it. Nothing annoys a sanctimonious misery guys more then people being cheery and ‘nice’!

    • Dominic Stockford

      A shop in Exmouth (I think) selling a variety of ungodly ‘new age’ and occult junk eventually closed (several years ago) because local Christians used to go in and be nice to them, and then tell them they were praying for them.

      • CliveM

        That’ll learn ’em!

      • DanJ0

        All those beards and woolly jumpers probably disrupted the power of their crystals, and customers returned them for refunds after their subsequent lack of efficacy. Never underestimate the power of a bunch of sheep in sheep’s clothing, is all I can say.

        • sarky

          Or they shut down because the owners became bishops.

        • Busy Mum

          ‘Beards and woolly jumpers’ is unfair stereotyping – I can assure you that I do not have a beard 🙂

          • Martin

            BM

            No beard? Shame on you.

            😉

          • Busy Mum

            Non-conformist in every sense of the word, then!!

          • Martin

            😉

        • Dominic Stockford

          Whilst I do have a beard, and am today wearing a jumper made of wool (both are great for keeping warm), that is not the type of Christians who went in – it was more likely to be the hippyish customers and staff who dressed in the way you stereotype.

  • Inspector General

    On the subject of intolerant whingers…

    …do have a peek at Pink News and watch two gay men who have their own fashion house in Italy being destroyed. Thousand cuts wise. Their crimes, high treason to the cause and blasphemy. What they said – they frowned upon gay people using IVF. The penalty chosen for them by the darling gay community, commercial ruin. It’s not exactly Kristallnacht but then, if you’re either Dolce or Gabbana, the differentiation is purely academic.

    So there you have it. If militant gays could kick those two to death and get away with it, they would. And these thug bullies have the damn nerve to complain about constant persecution by everyone and everybody, and cursing us for being judgmental. A sad day for all concerned. Sure you’ll agree…

    • CliveM

      Yes, although not being a “dedicated follower of fashion” but sure I give a damn!

      • Royinsouthwest

        Have you ever read John Donne’s poem, “No Man is an Island”?

        No man is an island,
        Entire of itself,
        Every man is a piece of the continent,
        A part of the main.
        If a clod be washed away by the sea,
        Europe is the less.
        As well as if a promontory were.
        As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
        Or of thine own were:
        Any man’s death diminishes me,
        Because I am involved in mankind,
        And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
        It tolls for thee.

        • CliveM

          Yes I’ve read it. However whilst agreeing with the sentiment, I’m still not moved by their plight.

          Bad of me I know. I’m just prejudiced about fashion.

          Remember what happened to Susan in The Last Battle!

      • Phil R

        You need to be dedicated and very rich

        Dolce & Gabbana swimming shorts

        Euro 150 to 250

        Tee shirt anyone? Euro 200 to 800

        • CliveM

          Cheap tat…………

    • Politically__Incorrect

      Meanwhile, Mr John still uses a Dolce & Gabbanni bag for shopping 🙂 – Nothing, and I mean NOTHING must get in the way of retail therapy!

  • Dominic Stockford

    Tolerance has been redefined.

    It used to mean that you and I could hold different views, and even discuss and promulgate them, and then get on with life – even sharing a fish and chip supper together. This would include views of an absolutist nature – example: religious belief (“two men say they’re Jesus, one of them must be wrong”).

    Tolerance now means that you are allowed to hold a different view from mine as long as your view doesn’t contradict mine, or anyone else’s, and doesn’t make any claim to being an absolute truth.

    • CliveM

      Good analysis

  • CHBrighton

    The problem with religious faith is that some people want to use it to dominate others. Oh, and there is another problem: it’s based on faith; there’s no proof that any of it is true, but an unavoidable conclusion that it is all made up.

    • William Lewis

      And yet smarter people than you have managed to avoid that very conclusion. Go figure.

    • The Explorer

      The Aztecs dominated other tribes so that they could guarantee a daily human sacrifice. On the other hand, the Italian Fascists wanted to dominate others, but religon was not the motive.
      Hinduism used to believe – maybe a branch of it still does – that the world was a plate resting on the back of an elephant resting on a tortoise. A lot of faith needed for that, as much faith as is needed to believe Marxism when it says the state will wither away if only you can kill enough people.
      There you are: Marxism. The desire to dominate others, and faith in the future. It fits both of your criteria. And it was dreamed up by an atheist.

    • Inspector General

      Mankind needs an order. There is an order derived from Christian faith. You don’t have to believe to appreciate it.

  • Linus

    Poor Christians, you were so used to being able to abuse whoever you like with impunity that now you can no longer get away with it, you feel as though you’ve lost a right.

    Only you haven’t. What you’ve lost was a privilege. The privilege that your states-sponsored cult had to thrust itself into everyone’s life, concern itself with everyone’s business and judge them whether they wanted to be judged or not. In the modern world, that privilege no longer exists.

    If you abuse, insult or threaten someone in the workplace now, you will be held responsible for it. Just like anyone else.

    • William Lewis

      “If you abuse, insult or threaten someone in the workplace now, you will be held responsible for it. Just like anyone else.”

      Fine by me.

      • CliveM

        Well said.

    • dannybhoy

      Yawwwwwn,
      Pass us a croissant, there’s a good fellow..

      • Grouchy Jack

        You’d eat it?

        • CliveM

          Depends where he’d previously been sticking it!

          • Pubcrawler

            I should steer clear of the pain au chocolat.

          • CliveM

            ROFL, yuck!

          • dannybhoy

            Totally gross!

          • CliveM

            I’m talking the oven, what are you thinking of?

          • Grouchy Jack

            Grouchy Jack would just let Danny eat it.

          • CliveM

            I think he may have gone off the idea?

        • dannybhoy

          Of course I would. I like Linus. He keeps us on our toes, challenges our faith and attitudes. I would be quite sad if he gave up his crusade..

    • The Explorer

      Unless you’re a Muslim.

    • Inspector General

      Abuse, threats and insults in the workplace tend to come from any but Christians. But it doesn’t suit your agenda to admit that, does it…

    • Grouchy Jack

      Good moaning Fronchie.

      Good title to the article, don’t you think? “Equality legislation is breeding a class of intolerant whingers.”

      And your response? A good old passive-aggressive intolerant whinge. Just classic.

      ROFL

    • Anton

      Linus, what was the purpose of your above comment, please? It is not a response to another comment and it does not pick up in any obvious way from any part of Gillan Scott’s article.

      • Lol ….

      • Linus

        So let’s get this clear shall we? Christians have the right to moan, complain, whinge, accuse and judge everyone else to their heart’s content, but the moment their victims return the attack, they prove themselves to be evil whingers and haters. That’s basically what whoever wrote this abject piece of secularphobic nonsense is saying. “Christians can attack and hate and whinge all they like because that’s their RELIGION, but Secularists just have to put up and shut up otherwise they’re EVIL HATERS!”

        Pull the other one! Why does “turn the other cheek” only ever seem to be applied by Christians to the behaviour of their opponents and never to their own?

        I’ll tell you why: because you’re hypocrites. You preach one gospel and live another. Your religion is nothing more than camouflage for aggression and a desire to dominate and control. Poor camouflage, too. Camouflage that hides nothing. But you just don’t have the smarts to see that, do you?

        Everyone else does though. We see you for what you really are. A small band of marginal religious obsessives determined to sabotage a society that no longer gives you power and control over everything and everyone.

        There’s virtually no difference between Christian and Muslim fundamentalists except that a Christian has his hands tied when it comes to using terrorism and outright murder as weapons in his struggle for domination. Every other tactic, no matter how low or defamatory, is perfectly permissible.

        Oh well, whatever you hope to gain by this kind of childish behaviour, the only thing you succeed in doing is making the public perception of you as spoiled and fractious children labouring under the mother of all entitlement syndromes even more deeply entrenched.

        • Pubcrawler

          Sound and fury. . .

        • Anton

          Linus, what do you make of Jesus’ advice to love your enemy? The reason for it is not so much to wind down vendettas between your party and his but to save you from becoming bitter.

          You also wrote: “If you abuse, insult or threaten someone in the workplace now, you will be held responsible for it. Just like anyone else.”

          There are two issues with your advocacy of a level playing field. First, it could be lousy for everybody. That is what political correctness is leading to, in fact: a situation with little freedom of speech for anybody. Second, there is the problem of selective enforcement of the law. Muslims regularly get away with public preaching that directly advocates violence whereas Christians may not even peaceably criticise gay marriage – of which Muslims take exactly the same view – without being dragged before the courts.

          When Christians have been privileged they have abused that privilege, as you rightly point out. As a nonconformist I need no reminding of that fact. But you write as if it is 1793, not 2015.

          • Grouchy Jack

            “As a nonconformist I need no reminding of that fact.”

            Grouchy Jack asks, did you wash you hands before or after writing that comment?

          • Anton

            Linus assumes that Christianity is intrinsically a political religion when it is nothing of the kind according to the New Testament. Politics is about law, the gospel is about grace. I am delighted to educate you as well as Linus to that fact.

          • Grouchy Jack

            Nah, just dry your hands and put the towel down.

          • Anton

            Of whom or what exactly do you consider that I am washing my hands?

          • Grouchy Jack

            Grouchy Jack doesn’t explain himself ….

          • Anton

            Suits me.

    • Martin

      Linus

      You didn’t realise that restrictions were placed on nonconformists until the 19th century I imagine.

    • Guest

      No surprise you oppose the anti-cult work done by primarily secular people.

    • magnolia

      Your history is absolute and utter nonsense, and your sense of a timeline non-existent. It is you who has departed from the beliefs of generations of your ancestors. It was not a privilege. There were next to no people who disbelieved in God to be privileged against. So your language is entirely illogical.

      Or do you seriously want to go back to pre-Christian times? Now would that be pre-Constantian, or are you searching for before the time when Christ walked the earth? Where is your golden age?

      Again “state sponsored cult”. How is a mainstream belief describable as a cult? Again emotive semantic nonsense.

      The very notion of “state sponsored” is more modern than historical. Your terms fly all over the place, and the only constant is your desire “to abuse who[m] ever you like”, which in your case is the British, heterosexual society, Christians worldwide, and women, with especial reference to motherhood and apple pie.

  • PaulMcKechnie

    I’m interested to hear about your teacher friend, Gillan. It’s usually helpful to address this kind of thing by asking the Head to put in writing what is required: this will make a number of things clearer, such as whether the Head means ‘no mention of God in class’, or ‘no mention of God in the staff room’, or what. It would also be worth having on paper the Head’s account of what prompted him to raise the subject with your friend (though if he’s a cautious person, the Head may not want to explain his own motives very fully). A relevant follow-up when the Head does put what is required in writing may be to ask if it applies to the whole staff, or only to your friend. The thing to do is to start a paper-trail and make the exchanges as official and transparent as possible.

    • Grouchy Jack

      Grouchy Jack says, get the Union to crush his nuts.

    • Phil R

      Governors?

      I very much doubt if they would all be in favour of the Head’s line

      • PaulMcKechnie

        Possibly they wouldn’t, but I’d be cautious. Governors will usually as a first reaction back the Head.

    • Demon Teddy Bear

      I’m sure you mean well, but unless you have a lawyer on hand, and stand to g gain money, that is completely a waste of time.

  • Let’s examine a recent out burst of “intolerant whingers” in the modern world of relativism. .

    Homosexual, Stefano Gabbana, expressed an opinion, as he’s entitled to, “We oppose gay adoptions. The only family is the traditional one. No chemical offsprings and rented uterus: life has a natural flow, there are things that should not be changed.” His long term ‘partner’, Domenico Dolce added, as is his right in a free society, “You are born to a mother and a father – or at least that’s how it should be. I call the children of chemistry, synthetic children. Rented uterus, semen chosen from a catalogue.”

    Elton John, who used IVF technology to get two sons with his ‘spouse’ David Furnish, was deeply offended, (and probably in pain), and fired back: “How dare you refer to my beautiful children as ‘synthetic’. And shame on you for wagging your judgmental little fingers at IVF — a miracle that has allowed legions of loving people, both straight and gay, to fulfill their dream of having children.” He went on to say he would never wear Dolce&Gabbana creations again and called for a boycott of their products.

    Gabbana retorted by calling Elton John a fascist: “I didn’t expect this … coming from someone whom I considered, and I stress ‘considered,’ an intelligent person like Elton John … you preach understanding, tolerance and then you attack others? Only because someone has a different opinion? Is this a democratic or enlightened way of thinking? This is ignorance, because he ignores the fact that others might have a different opinion and that theirs is as worthy of respect as his.”

    In a world without moral ‘facts’ all you are left with is ‘opinions’ and no rational basis on which to determine which ‘opinion’ carries weight. What’s left? Shrieking and wailing, pressure and the threat of force. In this case, the use of influence to damage a business.

    On a lighter note, Happy Jack hears Linus and his intended are all in a dither about having to find replacement tutus and trousers for their up and coming ‘event’.

    • DanJ0

      I recall the reaction to the mere £30K of sponsorship, out of millions yearly to charity and good causes, that Tesco set up in 2012:

      http://www.christianvoice.org.uk/index.php/shares-dive-as-tesco-sales-slump/

      One would think it was presenting an existential threat to society judging by the shrieking and wailing, and presumably the muttering and mumbling of prayer.

      I expect Morrisons has done something to upset Christians a year or two ago given their massive slump in profits. Something that bad doesn’t happen without the power of prayer, and some religious leaflets.

      • Phil R

        Yes I remember it well.

        My family stopped shopping at Tesco at that time (90% of grocery spending before) and we suggested to others both in the church community and elsewhere should do the same.

        In our case Lidil and Aldi benefited and we saved quite a considerable amount of money.

        Win Win. Makes a point and saves us money. Tesco just used in our case, to buy the items the other stores do not carry.

        We were surprised how easy it was to persuade people.

        Gay Pride it seems is not popular.

        • Martin

          Phil

          Nor will my wife shop at Tesco, and moans at those in the family who do. And we don’t patronise Starbucks either, or the Coop

          • Phil R

            Same…

            I had to wait in a hotel in London yesterday for 2 hours while they faft around with the hire car.

            Only a Starbucks available. I drank water.

            You see, like Carl. I can be just as good a Pharasse as everyone else when I choose to…

        • DanJ0

          “Gay Pride it seems is not popular.”

          Well it has a large turnout and attracts all sorts of corporate sponsorship, but I can’t say that I’ve ever been interested in attending one.

      • sarky

        Keeping my fingers crossed poundland do something to upset christian concern 🙂

        • Why?

          • sarky

            I really hate poundland 🙂

          • But why?

          • sarky

            Because it’s tacky and just makes the surrounding area look cheap aswell.

          • How very snobbish and judgemental – Linus would be proud of you.

          • sarky

            Would you want to live next door to one?

          • Lol …. poor Sarky. Consider a punishment from God and bear it with a smile.

          • sarky

            Grrrr knew there was a reason I didn’t like your god.

      • Rather different in both tone and content to this personalised, bitchy spat, Jack would say.

        Jack can understand Elton John’s reaction to his children being called “synthetic” – any parent would have reacted this way. He should have stopped there – but no the allegations of bigotry and intolerance from both sides poured forth.

        As Jack said:
        In a world without moral ‘facts’ all you are left with is ‘opinions’ and no rational basis on which to determine which ‘opinion’ carries weight. What’s left? Shrieking and wailing, pressure and the threat of force. In this case, the use of influence to damage a business.

        • Grouchy Jack

          Has Stephen Fry has started crying yet?

          Back in February, when he ‘married’ a young, almost adolescent looking, 27 year old, he crowed he was “‘ditzy with dippiness” and “bathing in a sea of bliss”. At his age and with his weight, he’d be better off down the gym.

          Now at 57 years of age, he’s thinking of babies. God help them. Asked about this he said: “Well that is peeping into Volume Two …. in Volume Two the little family, the patter of tiny feet. Come back to me on that one.”

          Yeah, right …. never mind the children. You just be ‘happy’ with your ‘bride’ who’s less than half your age.

        • Demon Teddy Bear

          Nobody called the children he bought synthetic. The discussion was general, not personal. The synthetic outrage was merely a synonym for “shut up”.

          • Domenico Dolce: “You are born to a mother and a father – or at least that’s how it should be. I call the children of chemistry, synthetic children. Rented uterus, semen chosen from a catalogue.”

            He called all IVF children “synthetic”.

          • Demon Teddy Bear

            There is a rather large difference between “Happy Jack is an asshole” and “all people posting on Cranmer are assholes”.

          • Hmmm …. this would be the equivalent of the latter and as HJ posts here (as do you) he (and you) would be assholes.

          • Demon Teddy Bear

            If you can’t tell the difference, stop posting until you work it out.

          • Babies conceived via IVF are “synthetic”
            EJ’s children were conceived via IVF
            EJ’s children are “synthetic”

            What’s to work out?

          • CliveM

            Don’t waste your time with this guy.

    • Politically__Incorrect

      ” you preach understanding, tolerance ”

      Yes, but only of himself. His intolerance of anybody who disagrees with him is breathtaking

    • magnolia

      Didn’t Elton John really mean to say “forefinger” rather than little finger? The wagging of the little finger is unimpressive as a telling off, but apparently has other meanings of a vulgar nature, such as a lady (or perhaps a gay man?) should not make towards a man. Ahem.

  • DanJ0

    So, what on earth are the cultural and religious reasons against school kids watching an eclipse?

    http://www.itv.com/news/london/2015-03-20/children-banned-from-watching-solar-eclipse-for-cultural-and-religious-reasons/

    • Leon Wolfeson

      Sounds to me like they copy/pasted the wrong phrase – probably “health and safety”.

      • DanJ0

        The Mail reports:

        Parents of children at North Primary School in Southall, London, said they were ‘outraged’ by the decision and claimed it showed a triumph of ‘religious superstition’ over scientific education.

        Phil Belman, whose seven-year-old daughter goes to the school, met with headteacher Ivor Johnstone who said he was unable to elaborate on the decision because of ‘confidentiality’.

        and

        “This is an issue about scientific matters versus religious superstition. I am outraged — is it going to be Darwin next? We will be like mid America.”

        • Leon Wolfeson

          So…probably the wrong pre-prepped statement from the school. We’re talking about the Mail there, it’s not like they’d check back with the school.

          • DanJ0

            Google the story, for goodness’sake.

          • DanJ0

            I noticed this related thing too, though not through equality and diversity:

            http://www.express.co.uk/news/nature/565155/Solar-eclipse-britain-religion-end-of-world

            Hmm.

          • Leon Wolfeson

            *checks some non-paysites*

            So basically, seems to be the head teacher making it up. I asked a couple of Hindu’s on twitter, they laughed at the idea being mainstream. So, just as valid as fake “health and safety” stuff (which the H&SE’s own site debunks).

            Anyone from the minority Hindu sect who bathe immediately afterwards would have held their kids out of school so they could do so anyway, since it’s not tied to viewing.

          • DanJ0

            You have no basis at all for saying the head teacher made it up. The obvious implication is that he reacted to some religious parents raising concerns. It’s not as though schools don’t routinely trot out H&S excuses.

          • Leon Wolfeson

            No – you can’t prove your “implication”. There’s plenty of basis, it’s called “what usually happens”

            Because right, he usual excuse is H&S for things *they just don’t want to do*, which is why I said it was probably a typo.

            The religious excuse is ridiculous, as I said, you’re looking for an excuse to be offended at someone other than the headmaster.

          • DanJ0

            Though some of the far-right people immediately blamed Muslims, of course.

  • UmUmUmUmUmUm

    Looks like Lenin, Trotsky and Stalin lost the battle, but have now won the war. How can it be possible that the West, in it’s moment of triumph against a squalid and utterly defeated ideology:chose to raise up the discredited ideas of its defeated foe and adopt them as its own.