Saturday, 16 February 2008

National Secular Society: No wriggle room for Williams

Now that the CofE’s General Synod is debating its favourite subject, namely what consenting adults are doing behind the bedroom curtains, the backlash from the Archbishop of Canterbury’s views on accommodating religious beliefs in a secular society continues. Give him credit, though, for apologising for us all being just too dim to understand his musings. We shall duly repent our ignorance.

Some say the simultaneously intelligent and unintelligible Williams was misinterpreted (he wasn't), and bemoan the frenzied media reaction. This ignored the vast space granted exclusively to religious leaders either to put the boot in or defend his twitterings (or both), with an article by Lord Carey dominating coverage in The Sunday Telegraph and News of the World. “We are a Christian society, with Christian laws derived from the Christian Bible,” wailed Christian Voice’s Stephen Green. Many said refilling the ever-emptying Anglican pews was his job, not going into bat for Islam, while others saw a man supposed to be peddling the moral absolutism of the Bible instead peddling moral relativism and nodding to the equal (or maybe that should be parallel?) veracity of the Koran.

Others recalled that previous Archbishops of Canterbury in history had been summarily executed for heresy. Should the present incumbent be grateful we don’t kill heretics any more? Or should believers be able to choose Sharia to deal with heretics, if unwilling to “relate” to British law on the subject? Better watch out, Rowan! Read more
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