TAKING a leaf out of Kerry McCarthy’s book, I’ve decided to initiate a Comment of the Week Award, to go to whoever leaves the most thoughtful, intelligent, bizarre, weird or wittiest comment over the previous week. There is no actual prize, of course – just the prestige and pride which will inevitably accompany such an honour.
And remember, the choice of Comment of the Week does not necesarily reflect or represent the views of the And another thing… Corporation, its shareholders or employees.
And the inaugural award goes to one of my most regular contributers, Wrinkled Weasel, for this comment on yesterday’s post, Our Christian heritage still matters.
That’s funny, I thought I was visiting Cranmer for a minute, there.
You ask “why do our local authorities find it impossible to recognise and acknowledge other people’s traditions without feeling the need to devalue our indigenous faith?”
It’s a profound question. I am trying desperately here not to be party political, so here goes.
Local Government employees have it drummed into them that “equality” is paramount. It is an incessant background tape loop that informs everything they do. They are informed, in no uncertain terms, that “minorities” get a bad deal and that they must be given special consideration in all decisions. It leads to the rather crazy stories you get, such as the recent one in Bristol (a PC hotspot) where Stonewall was consulted when an attempt was made to clear foliage on Clifton Downs in case gay cruisers’ rights were infringed. (No one actually thought to contact local residents, whose homes look out on the Downs and who have to view a variety of perverted activities including those of doggers, whose pressure group got left out) It leads to a whole raft of local initiatives that can broadly be described as Political Correctness gone Mad. Strangely, I believe they are only doing their duty. There is enormous pressure on employees to be politically correct – inadvertently calling someone “love” or “duck” or “hinny” or “moi luvvrrr” or any of the local terms of endearment can have you before a disciplinary panel. Scary eh?
The background to this is a pluralistic, relativistic society with a tendency to favour aetheism. Hitherto real minorities have been foregrounded. Religious festivals emanating from outwith the UK have been given special prominence, in a genuine attempt to aid integration, but in doing so some ground has been lost by the predominant, ruling ethos, which was Christian.
Couple this with the spiritual reaction to Christians. As a genuine Christian you understand how people do not wish to be confronted with Sin – or to be more specific, their separation from God. Given the chance, they will find every excuse to run away from what we understand to be the Truth.
This mix of PC coupled with genuine social concerns, alongside man’s innate hatred of God is toxic. It is accompanied by a relativistic and at times nihilistic world view. It is also prey the the natural desire to be at the top of the tree – as soon as a minority senses it has a voice and a foothold, it will push for more and more.
Our philosophical abode, our legacy of popular thinking, has created a pyramid of hegemony with small groups angling for a higher perch. It has spawned an ethos that declares an end to scapegoating, but in reality it has merely created another scapegoat.
All of this comes into play in the working out of local government policy, as applied by its workers.
At the moment, we have an interesting dichotomy. The perceived demands of one group (e.e.Muslims) are in conflict with those of another (e.g.Gays). This is just one example of how this philosophical hook upon which local govts. hang their policies will ultimately break down. They cannot serve the demands of both communities when those communties have diametrically opposed agendas.
Christianity has so far been an easy target. We tend to be a bit laid back about it all. Yes there are a lot of loonies, but on the whole we are cool about attacks on our beliefs. What will be interesting to watch is to see society fragment even more, when the very minorities that have been championed start fighting like ferrets in a sack. This is one Pandora’s box that will lead to a very serious rethink of local government policy, if not national policy. At least, I hope so.