Anti-Catholic Culture Reigns In Scotland

Catholics face “alarming levels of intolerance” 
Thursday 15 June 2017

Giving evidence to the Equalities and Human Rights Committee of the Scottish Parliament today (15th June 2017) Anthony Horan, Director of the Catholic Parliamentary Office claimed; “a culture of fear prevents people from being open about their faith.”

Mr. Horan who was giving evidence to MSP’s on the topic of bullying and harassment in schools, with an emphasis on anti-religious prejudice. The Committee heard evidence from a number of people, including representatives of the Church of Scotland, Muslim Community, Jewish Community, and the Scottish Secular Society.

In his comments to MSP’s, Mr. Horan said;

“My overriding concern about this subject is the culture of fear that runs right through society and which makes people feel, at best uncomfortable, and at worst totally frightened to be open about their faith. In my written submission to the Committee I provided testimonies of a number of young people who had experienced anti-Catholic prejudice in their school, most of it relating to the Church’s teaching on abortion and marriage. One student even dropped a subject to “avoid the harassment.”

Mr. Horan added;

“There is an alarming level of intolerance being levelled at some young people simply because they are Catholic or because they hold a particular view that others may disagree with. This is not a culture of tolerance and respect. We have to be very mindful of the need to tackle anti-religious behaviour and be wary of creating a hierarchy of rights in relation to the protected characteristics listed in the Equality Act 2010. We cannot allow some to trump others. It must be all or nothing.”

“There is also the sad reality of an increase in religious hate crime in Scotland, with a recently published report revealing that religiously aggravated crime is at an all time high. Within that, a deeply worrying and disturbing 57% of charges are as a result of anti-Catholic behaviour. Compare this to the percentage of charges relating to Protestantism (27%) and Islam (17%) and we are left with an undoubted sectarian problem that needs to be addressed.”

Mr. Horan concluded;

“If we are to build a culture of tolerance and respect for our young people we need to take on board the hard facts which reveal to us the reality of hate crime in our country and allow people across all protected characteristics to feel free to express themselves and to be open about their faith.”   ENDS
Press Release from Scottish Catholic Media Office

Comment:

Well I hope the penny’s dropped.  Providing “safe spaces” for allegedly “gay” pupils hasn’t made Catholic schools any “safer” for the wider Catholic pupil population.  And the craze for ecumenical activity hasn’t changed the anti-Catholic culture of bigotry in Scotland one bit. Those who would naturally NOT be bigoted – people genuinely trying to live Christian lives according to their lights – remain tolerant.  The rest remain IN-tolerant.  So best to go down the tried (for two thousand years) and tested road of seeking to explain the Faith and win converts to it.  Watering down Faith and Morals hasn’t worked. That’s for sure. Or maybe you disagree? Let’s hear it… 

Junk Journalism & Bigoted Broadsheets – A Deadly Combination

Junk Journalism & Bigoted Broadsheets - A Deadly Combination

The Pope is cool these days: he has 17 million followers on Twitter; he won’t use the fancy Papal limousine; he loves a game of football and used to hang around in tango bars when he was young. He even has an app.

What’s known as ‘the Francis effect’ sees him greeted like a pop star wherever he goes, with crowds of weeping nuns and young girls holding up hand-written signs with pink hearts which should surely say ‘I LUV Justin Bieber’ but, instead, have messages of affection for their Pope. (TV review: Panorama on whether the new Pope can start a Catholic revolution, The Herald, 3 April) Click on photo of Pope Francis to read the rest of this junk journalism… And click here to watch the BBC Panorama documentary on Pope Francis

And then tell us if you have ever read a more ignorant piece of anti-Catholic writing – ever? For those of you outside Scotland, don’t laugh, but we’ve got “anti-sectarianism” at the top of our agenda. It’s constantly described as “Scotland’s shame”. We’ve even had at least one top politician that I know of, actually admitting that we don’t have an anti-sectarian problem in Scotland, we have an anti-Catholic problem. Journalist, Julie McDowall – like many if not most other lapsed Catholics – is as anti-Catholic as the nearest Orangeman. And WOW! does it come across in her ugly article.  Do you see the connection? It’s usually because they’re ignorant, that they’re lapsed to begin with. Nobody who truly  understands our beautiful Catholic Faith could be lapsed. End of.

I’ve emailed a letter for publication to The Herald but wait – it’s highly unlikely to see the light of The Herald letters page. They had a blatant policy of censoring all letters from Catholic Truth, by command of their then Deputy Editor, Kevin McKenna (who now writes for the Scottish Catholic Observer – now, I said, “don’t laugh”) and although there was a brief respite during the editorship of Douglas-Home, who told me to begin submitting letters again since McKenna no longer worked at The Herald, under the latest Chief Censor, my letters are clearly being blocked again. Scoundrels, I think is the word I’m looking for. Yes, that’s it. Scoundrels.

Your comments welcome – and remember, unlike most other blogs (including The Herald blogs) this one isn’t moderated beyond the first comment from new bloggers and even that is for technical reasons, on the advice of WordPress. We’ve got nothing to fear from the truth – so let’s hear it folks. IS The Herald a bigoted broadsheet? IS Julie McDowall’s article nothing more than a piece of junk journalism?

Scotland: Bigotry Official… Anti-Catholic Petition Heard in Holyrood

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[Catholic] Politics news Alert

16 January 2014

 Have your say on the role of Church representatives on
Education Committees

 Responding to proposals to remove the obligation on local authorities
to appoint  religious representatives to Education Committees

Background

In recent times in Scotland, various groups have been making attempts to bring about changes to legislation in order to limit the presence of religion in public life, particularly in schools.  John Finnie MSP is currently consulting on his proposal for a Bill in the Scottish Parliament to change the current arrangements whereby Councils are obliged to make 3 places available for Church representatives on their Education Committees.  This follows on a recent petition to the Scottish Parliament which has resulted in a wider review of this issue.  There is a danger that, if the main voices raised in this debate are secular, the contribution of Church representatives to Council discussions of Education issues could be lost.

Why are there Church representatives on Council Education Committees?

Long before education authorities ever existed, schools had been established and were run by the Churches.  So, when they were transferred over to be managed, initially by local Public School Boards and later by local education authorities, the ongoing involvement and expertise of Church representatives was seen to be invaluable.

Today, the majority of schools are non-denominational, and Churches are not directly involved, although religious education and religious observance are still part of standard school provision.

Denominational schools, which educate approximately 20% of Scotland’s school pupils, offer an ethos and values which emerge from their particular religious traditions and they work closely with local parish communities.  Their approach is supported by a legislative framework which governs both the appointment of teaching staff and the content of religious and moral education programmes.

[What] is the argument for having Church representatives today?

Those people who are nominated by the Churches to contribute to the work of education committees live in the local community.  Most are laypeople people and many have significant experience of working in senior education posts.   Their contributions are focussed on the needs of the local community and are influenced by their own particular expertise.  Their input to the local democratic process is often greatly appreciated by education officials and by elected representatives.  Like other non-elected members on Councils, they freely give up their own time to serve their local communities and operate on a non-political basis.  In short, they make an invaluable contribution.

Catholic schools were “transferred” into state ownership in 1918 in the same Education Act which established local education authorities.  That arrangement came about as a result of assurances given that the specific characteristic of the Catholic school would be protected in legislation.  One of the mechanisms for monitoring the State’s ongoing commitment to those assurances is the presence of a Catholic Church representative on every Council where there are Catholic schools.  While Catholic Church representatives play a wider role than merely safeguarding Catholic schools, their role in doing so is seen by the Church as vital to the welfare of Catholic schools.  Thus the Church is opposed to any attempt to dispense with the role of Church representatives on Education Committees.

How you can help

1       Respond to the consultation on the Proposed Local Government Acccountability and Transparency (Scotland) Bill which can be found at http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/parliamentarybusiness/Bills/69470.aspx

Responses are due by 27th January 2014 and comments can be sent by  email to  john.finnie.msp@scottish.parliament.uk

or by post to

John Finnie MSP

Room M3.19

Scottish Parliament

Edinburgh EH99 1SP

2       Contact your MSP with your views on this proposed bill.

3       Contact your local Council to let them know your views on the proposed Bill.

Should Catholics Vote for Scottish Independence?

Should Catholics Vote for Scottish Independence?

The campaigns have devised their sound-bites, booked the billboards, posed for their team photos, and printed off millions of leaflets.

Today, the marathon run up to the referendum on Scottish independence marks one year to go until voters get a chance to have their say on the biggest decision the nation has ever faced.

First Minister Alex Salmond last night described it as a “once in a generation” event.

Scottish Secretary Michael Moore went one further and described it as “once in a lifetime”. Both agreed that it was undeniably “historic”.

Click on photo to read entire Scotsman Newspaper article.

Today marks the beginning of the campaign to get our votes. So how should we vote on September 18th 2014 – should Catholics vote for Scottish independence? Are there any “Catholic” issues?