- 5 years ago
- Wedding: July 2013 - UK
Maybe this is just a rant, but it strikes me that when it comes to Christianity in particular, people seem to enjoy being as nasty as possible. Example in point… a few months ago then there were several cases going through the courts here. Two of them were total non-starters… they involved people who were sacked for refusing to give marriage counselling or to marry same sex couples. Obviously, they lost their cases. Enough said.
Two of the cases involved women who were sacked for wearing crosses at work. One woman, after having had her case for unfair dismissal rejected in the UK, won her case at the European Court of human rights. Her compensation for losing her job and fighting a legal battle for several years was… £1,600. The second lady lost her case. She was told that her employer could legitimately fire her for not conforming to health and safety requirements, and that wearing a cross could be seen as a breach of health and safety. This seems reasonable until you consider that people of other religious faiths (for example, Sikhs) may wear religious jewellery even when working inside a closed health and safety environment… this is legally protected in the UK, although the right to wear a cross is not.
Then there was a lady who was fired for refusing to work on a Sunday. She lost her case, despite the fact that Muslims are legally protected from being fired for refusing to work on a Friday. The judge ruled that absence from work on the Sabbath was not a religious requirement. Which sounds fine… until you realise that Muslims are not required to avoid work on Fridays, either.
The thing that really gets me down when you read these articles, though, are the comments that people leave on the newspaper’s notice boards. People say that these people are religious fanatics, that Christianity should be banned, that raising your children as Christians is child abuse… things which they probably think about other religions, only they can’t say it, because that could be construed as racism. When it’s Christianity though, it’s open season.
Seriously… I know that people complain on the bee about having their secular ceremonies criticised, but I’ve had the opposite problem. We understand that it’s not OK to criticise someone’s humanist ceremony where I live (because it isn’t)… but you can feel free to lay into their Christian ceremony. If you wear a cross, even complete strangers occasionally seem to think it’s OK to come up to you and call you out, holding you responsible for every war, death, disaster etc etc in the world. In the past two weeks alone, I’ve had two people I barely know clock me and give me variants of:
“You do know God doesn’t exist, right?” (To which I usually reply “Oh, ****. Really? I wonder if I can still get my subscription money back?”).
“I’m amazed. I thought you were intelligent.” (To which I have yet to think up a half decent, semi-polite response).
I spoke to a lady in my church about it lately and she just shrugged. “Happened even when I was young” she said. “My family were all atheists. When I became a Christian, my family pretty much disowned me. Wouldn’t even attend my wedding”.
I live in a country where the established churches are some of the most liberal and progressive in the world… you think these guys could have at least picked their targets better. And they’re so uneducated. Some of them even think that creationism is a commonly held belief amongst UK Christians, for example. I dunno. It just makes me sad.