Why do we have a state religion? Watch

Jam'
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#1
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Isn't it time to say NO to having a state religion? We have so many people of so many different religions and cultures that having a more highly privileged religious institution with automatically granted access to the House of Lords etc. is indicative of an intrinsic level of discrimination.

I think we should be religion-independent as there is so much variety in our country.
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Plantagenet Crown
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I guess it's just a vestige from the past. I think that getting rid of the state religion would be much more hassle and cause more problems than the effort's worth to be honest.
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Valyrian
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It is how it is buddy
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Sunny_Smiles
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because our country can't get over its tradition of churches and monarchs :lol:
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Jam'
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(Original post by Plantagenet Crown)
I guess it's just a vestige from the past. I think that getting rid of the state religion would be much more hassle and cause more problems than the effort's worth to be honest.
With that attitude you'd never get anything done. Everything is always more hassle than doing nothing and you might as well sleep your life away.
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Arbolus
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Why not? It's not as if members of other religions are being hindered or discriminated against in any way. There's no clear benefit to disestablishing the Church, so why bother?
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mojojojo101
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(Original post by Arbolus)
Why not? It's not as if members of other religions are being hindered or discriminated against in any way. There's no clear benefit to disestablishing the Church, so why bother?
CofE have 26 seats in the House of Lords with full and active roles in the legislative procedure.

If you didn't have the state religion you could get rid of them lot for a start and as a result remove an overt CofE bias in our lawmaking process.
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TenMileTie
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Since each denomination of Christianity stipulates that the faithful must worship, and the bulk of the population of Britain at any one point in history being theologically obtuse, knowing that the reason x-congregation didn't convert wasn't because of opposition to the doctrine of transubstantiation, declaring a state religion would have been an effective way of identifying and discouraging the growth of groups sympathetic to foreign powers.
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Arbolus
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(Original post by mojojojo101)
CofE have 26 seats in the House of Lords with full and active roles in the legislative procedure.

If you didn't have the state religion you could get rid of them lot for a start and as a result remove an overt CofE bias in our lawmaking process.
There are worse people to give seats to.
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MrKappa
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(Original post by Arbolus)
There are worse people to give seats to.
But there are also plenty of better people as well.
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Psyk
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(Original post by Arbolus)
There are worse people to give seats to.
I don't have an objection to people who are senior members of a religious organisation also being in the House of Lords. What I do object to is having a number of seats reserved for representatives of a particular religion. Appointment to the Lords should be based on merit. I think it makes sense to have some religious figures in the mix, but I don't think there should be places constitutionally reserved for them.

The Lords should be made up of people who are experts in their field, and it should aim to represent many different fields. Religion is no exception to that, but that includes all religions.
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Baron of Sealand
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Because the parliament fears that the disestablishment might be a bill the religious Queen may not want to sign. If she does not, or just puts it aside, it will create a constitutional crisis.

The C of E is likely to be gotten rid off by the time by her royal passing.
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scrotgrot
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Because we haven't had a revolution since 1689 so the institutions we set up then are by and large what we still have now. The French by comparison have a secular state because they had their last revolution in 1789 after democratic humanism pushed aside religion.

I don't think it's a bad thing. Almost the only bulwarks in the struggle against our amoral government have been the judiciary and the church, and their representatives in the House of Lords.
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thunder_chunky
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I imagine because of tradition, which is also why so many people are still reluctant to leave it behind. It is somewhat unnecessary though, but as long as it doesn't get in the way of democracy, common sense, justice, or anything like that, I'm not that bothered.
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gladders
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Speaking as an atheist, it does no harm. There are 26 bishops in the House of Lords, this is true, but to assume that they therefore speak as 'The Church of England Party' is to misunderstand them. Bishops take no whip, not even from the Archbishop of Canterbury, and frequently you will find two Bishops in a debate, one speaking for the proposal and one against.

In fact, Bishops rarely attend. They have a rota so there is always at least one in the House to speak on anything the Church may wish to comment on, but beyond that they are quite independent.

To say there is a Church of England 'bias' in our legislation is to overblow their cohesion and their presence. They are easily outnumbered and can't even agree on a religious line between them.

If a Bill came before Parliament tomorrow to remove the Church of England's status, I wouldn't object to it, but I would find it irksome to consume valuable parliamentary time indulging what would ultimately be nothing more than a cosmetic change in the constitution of this country. Far better time could be spent in improving welfare, health and education.
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455409
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I would rather have 26 bishops in the Lord's than 26 rich industrial leaders which is the alternative. Though arguably the church of England is a big financial player with its massive Investments and land ownership.

Posted from TSR Mobile
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DaveSmith99
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I don't think it's too much of an issue if we're Christian in name as long as we're secular in practice. The HOL thing is a minor issue, and I support reform anyway regardless of the bishops.
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ChaoticButterfly
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America is supposedly secular and has a very large fundamentalist Christian problem. For a country with a state religion the UK is incredibly nonreligious.
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Martyn*
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The state religion gels society and ensures that the upper classes are not sent to the guillotine by the plebs.
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Everglow
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(Original post by thunder_chunky)
I imagine because of tradition, which is also why so many people are still reluctant to leave it behind. It is somewhat unnecessary though, but as long as it doesn't get in the way of democracy, common sense, justice, or anything like that, I'm not that bothered.
This sums up how I feel.

If the CofE had MPs in the Commons, then I would be concerned - but the Lords have much reduced power and mostly just act as a power check for the Commons. If having a state religion had led to the Equal Marriage Bill (2014) being rejected on religious grounds, I would have been unhappy; but it didn't, and the bill passed very smoothly, even through the Lords.

If the bishops in the Lords had more power, I think this would be more of an issue to debate, but as thunder_chunky said, as long as the state religion isn't standing in the way of democracy and justice etc. then it doesn't really pose a problem and we have more important things to pay attention to.
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