Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Carey

Mail Online  on 12th April 2010

The Church and the judiciary are two of the most venerable pillars of the establishment.

But in an explosive development, war has been declared between them over one of the most fundamental aspects of our society – freedom of religious conscience.

In an unprecedented move, the former Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Carey, and other church leaders are calling upon the Master of the Rolls and other senior judges to stand down from future Court of Appeal hearings involving cases of religious discrimination because of the judges’ perceived bias against Christianity.

Lord Carey is said to have prepared a witness statement in support of Mr McFarlane

No wonder Lord Carey and his colleagues have been galvanised into militant action. For under the guise of promoting ‘ tolerance’ and ‘liberal’ social attitudes, anti-discrimination law is deeply intolerant and illiberal. That’s because it has nothing to do with fairness and everything to do with ideology. It is innately on the side of minorities on the basis that they are by definition vulnerable to the majority. So in the hands of the judiciary, it has turned into a fearsome weapon against Britain’s mainstream attitudes and faith.

The result is that Christianity is now in danger of being turned into a despised and marginalised creed practised only by consenting adults in private.

Christians are already being forced into renouncing their religious beliefs if they want to remain in certain jobs.

This is simply intolerable in a liberal society where freedom of religious conscience is a bedrock value.

Yet while Christians find themselves under the legal cosh, a double standard is employed towards certain minority faiths. Thus a Christian nurse is told she can’t work with patients unless she removes her cross while Muslim NHS staff have been exempted from hygiene rules stipulating that their forearms must remain uncovered.

The relentless message from the top of our society is that Christianity – the foundation-stone of Western liberty, tolerance and democracy – is intolerant, bigoted and objectionable in contrast to other faiths. Their own precepts may be truly inimical to liberty or reason, but to these we must not turn a politically correct hair.

What Lord Carey has rightly grasped is that if the judiciary is not challenged and this process is not stopped, within a short space of time our society will have slid off the edge of a cultural cliff.

But he is having to fight more than the judiciary. For on this great issue – the defence of his religion and the values of this society – his successor, Dr Rowan Williams, is conspicuously silent.

Indeed, more than that he is positively embracing his faith’s destruction. For along with Lord Phillips, the former senior Law Lord, Dr Williams has welcomed the advance in Britain of Islamic sharia law – which really is inimical to democracy and equality.

The highest echelons of both the Church and the judiciary seem incapable of grasping why Christianity is crucial to this country and has to be upheld and defended against attempts to undermine and destroy it, from wherever such attacks may come.

To which all one can say is thank God for Lord Carey – and doubtless he is saying so, too.

 


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