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Lord Carey: Christians 'vilified' by courts

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    Christians are being "vilified" by British courts and "driven underground", Lord Carey, a former archbishop of Canterbury, has said.

    In a written submission to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), he blames judges for treating some worshippers as "bigots".

    He also warns that believers are being sacked for expressing their faith.

    The criticism is part of an appeal to Strasbourg judges to protect religious freedom ahead of a landmark case.

    Lord Carey - who was archbishop from 1991 to 2002 - has voiced concern that a recent "secular conformity of belief and conduct" has meant that conduct in keeping with the Christian faith is effectively being "banned" in the public setting.

    In his submission, he says the "the State and Courts... not parliament" are destroying the legal right to freedom of religion of "any substantive effect" by insisting on stringent readings of equality law.

    He also argues that if rulings against wearing crosses and expressing Christian faith are not reversed it could lead to believers facing a "religious bar" to employment.

    The former leader calls for the ECHR to safeguard religious values - something he accuses the British judiciary of failing to do in "case after case".

    A hearing at the court in Strasbourg on 4 September will consider the cases of British employees who claim they have been discriminated against due to their Christian beliefs.

    The hearing will also deal with the case of a relationship counsellor who lost his job after refusing to give sex therapy to gay couples.
    'Christians excluded'

    In his submission, Lord Carey admonishes British judges who "consistently applied equality law to discriminate against Christians" and cautions against a drive to remove Christian traditions from the public sphere.

    He writes: "In a country where Christians can be sacked for manifesting their faith, are vilified by state bodies, are in fear of reprisal or even arrest for expressing their views on sexual ethics, something is very wrong.

    "It affects the moral and ethical compass of the United Kingdom."

    Lord Carey also hits out at discrimination in the workplace, warning that "Christians are excluded from many sectors of employment simply because of their beliefs; beliefs which are not contrary to the public good".

    The National Secular Society said the justice system should not be "weighted in favour of the religious, violating the principle of one law for all".

    It said Christians' "freedom is only limited, and rightly so, when they seek to discriminate against and therefore impinge adversely on others as part of employment or providing services to the public".

    National Secular Society executive director Keith Porteous Wood said: "Being required to respect others equally does not compromise the ability to worship or manifest religion."

    He added: "Lord Carey is not just wrong, but the truth is the opposite of what he asserts. Far from the UK being less intolerant than the rest of the world on religion, it is perhaps the most religiously tolerant country in the world."

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-17712028
    Do you agree with our fellow Christian here, that there's a rising amount of discrimination against them in their own country?
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    Do you agree with our fellow Christian here, that there's a rising amount of discrimination against them in their own country?
    If you mean that Christians are now not able to practice their own religion without affecting the rights of others, then no.

    If you mean that archbishops and the like are starting to see that the rest of the country doesn't want to be ruled by their superstition, then yes.

    If I am gay, is is anti-Christian to not want to be subjected to "YOU SHOULDN'T BE GAY" ads on the tube? Is it anti-Christian to want to marry the person I love?

    If I am a early-stage pregnant woman, is it anti-Christian to not want to be accosted further by anti-abortion campaigners outside a clinic, having already made a very difficult decision?

    If I am not Christian, is it anti-Christian to ask that my secular place of work refrains from forcing everyone to engage in a prayer session before meetings?

    If I value education, is it anti-Christian for me to want peer-reviewed science to be taught in schools, rather than the mere conjecture of creationism?

    ---

    Freedom of religion is a great, great thing. However, it is not more important than any other basic human rights.
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    (Original post by Agrippa)
    If you mean that Christians are now not able to practice their own religion without affecting the rights of others, then no.

    If you mean that archbishops and the like are starting to see that the rest of the country doesn't want to be ruled by their superstition, then yes.

    If I am gay, is is anti-Christian to not want to be subjected to "YOU SHOULDN'T BE GAY" ads on the tube? Is it anti-Christian to want to marry the person I love?

    If I am a early-stage pregnant woman, is it anti-Christian to not want to be accosted further by anti-abortion campaigners outside a clinic, having already made a very difficult decision?

    If I am not Christian, is it anti-Christian to ask that my secular place of work refrains from forcing everyone to engage in a prayer session before meetings?

    If I value education, is it anti-Christian for me to want peer-reviewed science to be taught in schools, rather than the mere conjecture of creationism?

    ---

    Freedom of religion is a great, great thing. However, it is not more important than any other basic human rights.
    This. I have no issue with religion, and people being proud of it. But if that is harmful to others, it's not OK. 'Praise God' billboards = fine (if a little annoying ) Anti gay adverts that will inevitably hurt, and actually discriminate against a group of people protected by law and recognized as not diseased = not fine!
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    Christians being persecuted? What tosh!

    No one is persecuted in the UK, and especially not Christians.. They are the overwhelming majority of religious people, and can express their faith in (almost) every way they see fit.

    They still have to keep within the law when it comes to gay people, but an atheist homophobe would be treated the same way as a Christian homophobe. You don't get to discriminate against gay people just because your holy book allows it!
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    Let them believe in the bobo tribe if they want.

    Eventually, when the World's needs are met, then religion will disband anyway.
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    (Original post by wtfCharlie)
    This. I have no issue with religion, and people being proud of it. But if that is harmful to others, it's not OK. 'Praise God' billboards = fine (if a little annoying ) Anti gay adverts that will inevitably hurt, and actually discriminate against a group of people protected by law and recognized as not diseased = not fine!
    Last time I checked, the ad said something about there existing "ex-gays". I would hardly call it discriminating if I'm honest, hurtful maybe (because it's such a shock ex-gays exist), but does that really matter in the western definition of freedom of speech?
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    Last time I checked, the ad said something about there existing "ex-gays". I would hardly call it discriminating if I'm honest, hurtful maybe (because it's such a shock ex-gays exist), but does that really matter in the western definition of freedom of speech?
    Yes, but it's advertising to homosexuals that they can become straight as if it's something that needs to be changed when it doesn't. That's what's damaging, a person struggling with their sexuality doesn't need the added pressure of Christian groups telling them how immoral they are and how they can be 'helped' when all they need is for people to accept them so they can feel comfortable as who they are.

    Just because someone is religious doesn't mean their rights or needs should be considered more important than the rights of that other person who is not religious.
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    If those are the best examples that he could come up with he needs to give it a rest.
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    (Original post by navarre)
    Christians being persecuted? What tosh!

    No one is persecuted in the UK, and especially not Christians.. They are the overwhelming majority of religious people, and can express their faith in (almost) every way they see fit.

    They still have to keep within the law when it comes to gay people, but an atheist homophobe would be treated the same way as a Christian homophobe. You don't get to discriminate against gay people just because your holy book allows it!
    AMEN.
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    (Original post by KJane)
    Yes, but it's advertising to homosexuals that they can become straight as if it's something that needs to be changed when it doesn't. That's what's damaging, a person struggling with their sexuality doesn't need the added pressure of Christian groups telling them how immoral they are and how they can be 'helped' when all they need is for people to accept them so they can feel comfortable as who they are.

    Just because someone is religious doesn't mean their rights or needs should be considered more important than the rights of that other person who is not religious.
    Can you please enlighten me on where it states gays are "immoral" -



    Anyone who can be objective and unbiased in this knows there's nothing wrong with the above ad.
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    Can you please enlighten me on where it states gays are "immoral" -



    Anyone who can be objective and unbiased in this knows there's nothing wrong with the above ad.
    "The full length advert, which will appear on five different routes in the capital, is backed by the Core Issues Trust whose leader, Mike Davies, believes "homoerotic behaviour is sinful". His charity funds "reparative therapy" for gay Christians who believe that they have homosexual feelings but want to become straight."

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012...?newsfeed=true

    You can't just take things at face value, just because it doesn't outwardly state on the bus advert that they believe it's immoral, it's the sentiment, it's an advertisement saying people can seek therapy. What arguments do you think the christian group are going to give people in a session?
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    (Original post by KJane)
    "The full length advert, which will appear on five different routes in the capital, is backed by the Core Issues Trust whose leader, Mike Davies, believes "homoerotic behaviour is sinful". His charity funds "reparative therapy" for gay Christians who believe that they have homosexual feelings but want to become straight."

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012...?newsfeed=true

    You can't just take things at face value, just because it doesn't outwardly state on the bus advert that they believe it's immoral, it's the sentiment, it's an advertisement saying people can seek therapy. What arguments do you think the christian group are going to give people in a session?
    You're really no better than Christians, because you're in support of the opposite, which has the same effect.

    There's many people out there who are not sure of their sexuality, they need to have a choice, not be forced down their throats that "yes you are gay, there's nothing wrong with it".

    And like I said, that advert is fine, it's the equivelant to this, which was allowed -

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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    You're really no better than Christians, because you're in support of the opposite, which has the same effect.

    There's many people out there who are not sure of their sexuality, they need to have a choice, not be forced down their throats that "yes you are gay, there's nothing wrong with it".

    And like I said, that advert is fine, it's the equivelant to this, which was allowed -

    How? Because I believe people should be able to live their life without facing anxiety because of religious reactions to their sexuality? Which is the statement you think someone would rather hear as support for determining their sexuality?

    "No one cares that you are/might be gay so get on with your life and be happy." or "It's a sin to be homosexual, so you must change in order to be happy."

    I think you'll find your example of the atheist advert is on par with the original anti-gay bus advert than with the Christian bus advert, both of them are denouncing damaging religious groups.
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    i think more and more people are questioning religion and those who follow it.

    they are not discriminated against simply for being christian and telling people that when asked about religion/showing their religion with a crusifix etc.
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    (Original post by KJane)
    How? Because I believe people should be able to live their life without facing anxiety because of religious reactions to their sexuality? Which is the statement you think someone would rather hear as support for determining their sexuality?
    I think people would be happy to know that you don't have to be gay. And that just because they feed you with the whole "your born with this, you can't escape being gay" crap, doesn't mean they have to persuit it.

    Right now, they don't have a choice, all they see is that if your unsure about your sexuality, then you must be gay. Having a deep physcological effect.

    (Original post by KJane)
    "No one cares that you are/might be gay so get on with your life and be happy." or "It's a sin to be homosexual, so you must change in order to be happy."
    No one says that. THe bus advert clearly simply said; "Ex gay and proud". You need to keep within the scope of the arguement, if you truelly support freedom of choice and expression then you wouldn't be so worked up or against such a statement.

    (Original post by KJane)
    I think you'll find your example of the atheist advert is on par with the original anti-gay bus advert than with the Christian bus advert, both of them are denouncing damaging religious groups.
    This is just ignorance, where you've completly missed my point. How you can't see the comparison between this anti-religion advert and that pro-ex-gays advert is beyond me.

    Unless you're a bigot ofcourse.
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    Do you agree with our fellow Christian here, that there's a rising amount of discrimination against them in their own country?
    I think people (on both sides) are just being a bit stupid about the issue. There are plenty of workable compromises that could have been reached, but haven't been, because no-one is keen to actually get together and discuss issues sensibly.

    (Original post by Agrippa)
    If I am gay, is is anti-Christian to not want to be subjected to "YOU SHOULDN'T BE GAY" ads on the tube? Is it anti-Christian to want to marry the person I love?
    It may or may not be anti-Christian, but it's certainly anti-free speech. People ought to be able to discuss sexual morality (which are actions), and that includes the freedom to say (and say publically), that certain kinds of sexual behaviour are immoral. If that bothers you, get a thicker skin. That's how people ought to behave in a free society.

    (Original post by Agrippa)
    Is it anti-Christian to want to marry the person I love?
    Well, quite possibly. You can already have a state-sanctioned legal union that gives you all the rights and benefits of a heterosexual marriage. So the campaign cannot be about gay rights, it can only be about trying to force a change in the way people can define their legal relationships.

    (Original post by Agrippa)
    If I am a early-stage pregnant woman, is it anti-Christian to not want to be accosted further by anti-abortion campaigners outside a clinic, having already made a very difficult decision?
    What does 'accosted' mean here? People are certainly entitled to demonstrate, and try to convince you of an alternative, especially given that a human life is at stake.

    (Original post by Agrippa)
    If I am not Christian, is it anti-Christian to ask that my secular place of work refrains from forcing everyone to engage in a prayer session before meetings?
    To my knowlege, no place of work has ever forced individuals to pray. Is it anti-Christian that an upstart has forced Christians not to pray before meetings?
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    No one says that. THe bus advert clearly simply said; "Ex gay and proud". You need to keep within the scope of the arguement, if you truelly support freedom of choice and expression then you wouldn't be so worked up or against such a statement.

    This is just ignorance, where you've completly missed my point. How you can't see the comparison between this anti-religion advert and that pro-ex-gays advert is beyond me.
    I understand the comparison between the anti-religion advert and the pro-ex-gay advert because it's telling people they have a choice to be non-religious, or to not be gay, however these are very different things. The sentiment behind the anti-gay one is a religious group who condemns homosexuality according to holy books that takes their morality from the dark ages who has gone far in teaching people that homosexuality is wrong. Had they not done so, perhaps people would feel less conflicted over who they fall in love with. The atheist one is just true.

    And I can support the expression of free speech, but that doesn't mean I have to be happy about what's said, while a person might have the right to denounce one thing, I have the right to react to that and answer back as part of my free speech.
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    (Original post by Perseveranze)
    You're really no better than Christians, because you're in support of the opposite, which has the same effect.

    There's many people out there who are not sure of their sexuality, they need to have a choice, not be forced down their throats that "yes you are gay, there's nothing wrong with it".

    And like I said, that advert is fine, it's the equivelant to this, which was allowed -

    You can't choose to be gay. Choosing to deny one's homosexuality or bisexuality would count as self-repression, and being pressured to deny it would count as societal sexual repression.

    You can choose to belong to a certain denomination. The choice, at least here in the free world, is always yours to make and nobody can say or do otherwise.

    Telling gay people that they should seek to lose their homosexuality is saying that they should deny their nature. Telling people that their faith is that they should deny their beliefs. Big difference. You can change your beliefs, given time and evidence, it's essentially impossible to change your nature, especially your sexuality.
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    (Original post by Aphotic Cosmos)
    You can't choose to be gay. Choosing to deny one's homosexuality or bisexuality would count as self-repression, and being pressured to deny it would count as societal sexual repression.

    You can choose to belong to a certain denomination. The choice, at least here in the free world, is always yours to make and nobody can say or do otherwise.

    Telling gay people that they should seek to lose their homosexuality is saying that they should deny their nature. Telling people that their faith is that they should deny their beliefs. Big difference. You can change your beliefs, given time and evidence, it's essentially impossible to change your nature, especially your sexuality.
    Why are we talking ab the gay gene as if it actually exists?

    I'm sure it's under a lot of debate and it's not looking in favour of such a gene existing in the same way as the existence of a gene for eye colour.

    Environmental factors must surely come into play and as such, choice would fall into those factors would it not?
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    (Original post by dreiviergrenadier)
    It may or may not be anti-Christian, but it's certainly anti-free speech. People ought to be able to discuss sexual morality (which are actions), and that includes the freedom to say (and say publically), that certain kinds of sexual behaviour are immoral. If that bothers you, get a thicker skin. That's how people ought to behave in a free society.
    Sure, people should be able to discuss such things, and say such things publically, but that doesn't necessarily extend to the right of using public transport advertising as a forum for the discussion. The concept of free speech, and being able to say anthing anywhere are different things.

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