Wednesday, 15 February 2012

"Anarchy Is Awful, I'd Best Be In Charge Of Everything"

Shorter Sayeeda Warsi: "We need to battle those who fear multiple identities by imprinting a single identity upon the UK, and the best way to create space for religious minorities is to promote the one religion that not one of them shares!"

Note the switcheroo Warsi is trying to get away with here, by the way.  Minority religions must be respected by the state, therefore a secular state is bad, therefore a Christian state must be good.  The fact that there's plenty of reason to believe that a Christian state could end up worse for minorities is never considered.  The same logical progression could lead one to conclude that since being warm is good, living in Scotland is bad, and therefore moving somewhere else, such as Greenland, must be good.

(Another formulation would be the old Yes Minister line about politician's thought processes: something must be done, this is something, therefore we must do it.  Except in this case, of course, it's not so much that something must be done, as the current situation isn't considered perfect in all respects by all people simultaneously).

I suppose one could argue that it's possible that literally any state religion would be better than no state religion, but that formulation seems far too close to the idea of "anyone but atheists" so beloved of sophistic American politicians and that awful film Contact.  And whatever else you want to say about the idea that people of all religions should be able to join forces against the non-believers, it's difficult to believe that in that scenario, it would be the "militant secularists" who'd be the people holding too much influence.

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