More meejah matters - Nick Baines's blog - Musings of a restless bishop

Three stories penetrate the work-ridden last few days.

Yesterday Trevor Kavanagh, associate editor and former political editor of the Sun had the nerve to accuse the Metropolitan Police of wasting time and resources on their investigation of criminality at the heart of News International. He described police tactics as treating suspected journalists like “members of an organised crime gang”. He objected to dawn raids and intrusive searches of journalists’ homes.

Forgive my naïveté, but why does he think the police are doing this at all? Would he or his newspaper have had any patience with police ignoring criminality on an industrial scale in some other area of society? Did he consider the handling of the MPs’ expenses scandal as a waste of time and money – a gross overreaction? Does he really think that investigations into corruption and criminality at the Sun is ‘disproportionate’?

I usually find Trevor Kavanagh interesting, but this has left me staggered. Is he so out of touch that he still doesn’t get the public outrage at this enormous corruption? The irony of his choice of words is that the need for expensive and thorough police investigation arises directly from crime that looks distinctly ‘organised’. Or is it just that it is OK for ordinary mortals to have their lives intruded upon, shredded and dumped – their reputations rubbished and their families disturbed – but somehow wrong for journalists to suffer the same treatment? I am boggled.

Richard Dawkins is at it again – although Giles Fraser rattled him on the BBC Radio 4 Today programme this morning. As Dawkins mocked respondents to his poll who couldn’t name the first gospel, Fraser embarrassed him by exposing his inability to remember the full title of Darwin’s Origin of Species. His latest evangelistic campaign is just silly. In danger of confusing atheism with secularism (they are not the same), he perpetuates the pretence that he occupies neutral space whereas religious people are somewhere up the loaded loony scale. What makes him think that his world view is to be privileged above all others is still unclear. Anyway, his survey proves little – and certainly not what he thinks it proves.

Baroness Warsi has complained to the Pope about rampant and aggressive secularism that is marginalising religion in general and Christianity in particular in Britain today. Not having had time today to read all the reports of this, I remain unclear why she needs to tell the Pope what he already thinks. But, the question is really whether or not she is right. I just hope she doesn’t slip into the language of ‘persecution’.

The most interesting two responses I have seen to Dawkins and Warsi are by Giles Fraser and Julian Baggini. Rational atheist argument is fine and secularist campaigning acceptable. But, where does the mindless aggression come from? Why the irrational evangelism that doesn’t even pretend to be tolerant of any world view that differs from it’s own fundamentalism?

 

 

Views: 33

Tags: Baroness, Fraser, Giles, Inquiry, International, Kavanagh, Leveson, News, Sun, Trevor, More…Warsi, atheism, journalism, media, secularism

Comment by Syd Bill on March 14, 2012 at 18:41

Having read copies of the Baroness's speeches at Lambeth Palace and the Vatican I can't see any words

that can be taken as complaining. I think her words as a Muslim are a challenge to Christians and all religions to be active in an increasingly secular world.

Add a Comment

You need to be a member of Churches Together Connect to add comments!

Need help?

If you are having any difficulties with Churches Together Connect please contact us by email.

Disclaimer

The views expressed on this website, or accessed through links, are those of the people and organisations concerned. CTBI as a charity does not necessarily share these views and accepts no responsibility for them.

Terms and Conditions

Churches Together Connect runs on the Ning.com network and users are subject to its

Privacy policy

Report an Issue

Latest Activity

Katharina Smith-Muller posted a blog post

News/events (countrywide) - The celebration of Easter and Passover coincide this year

Our Jewish brothers and sisters have been celebrating the festival of Passover from 14th April, continuing until 22nd April. Pope Francis I. has sent a telegram expressing his good wishes for Passover to the Jewish community in Rome:" A few days on from our meeting, and with renewed gratitude for your having desired to honour the celebration of the beginning of my ministry with your presence and that of other distinguished members of the Jewish community, I take great pleasure in extending my…See More
Wednesday
Katharina Smith-Muller posted a blog post

Resources/events - Mahavir Jayanti and Vaisakhi

This coming long weekend brings not one, but two festivals of non-Christian religions – the Jain community celebrates Mahavir Jayanti on 13th April (Sunday), and the Sikh community celebrates Vaisakhi on Monday. The Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue is sending a greeting message to all Jains for Mahavir Jayanti, which can be found here:…See More
Apr 10
David Coleman posted a video

PALM SUNDAY If you were silent

If the Lord's disciples keep silent, the stones would shout aloud - this is the stones preparing to do so, using 'stones' in a wider sense - the architectura...
Apr 7
Guest Blogs posted a blog post

Love, actually - Nick Baines's blog - Musings of a restless bishop

This is the text of this morning's Pause for Thought on the Chris Evans Show on BBC Radio 2 in the presence of actors Emma Thompson, Celia Imrie, Paul McGann, Sean Pertwee and musician Billy Ocean.I've just been on holiday for a week of culture-free sitting in the sun and reading. It was brilliant. I packed a pile of…See More
Mar 31

© 2014   Created by Churches Together Connect.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service