Who would Jesus persecute?
Gay people, apparently. Today Pink News reported that the Catholic Education Service has contacted at least 359 secondary schools in England and Wales to encourage pupils to sign up to a petition organised by religious lobby group the Coalition for Marriage. The petition says:
I support the legal definition of marriage which is the voluntary union for life of one man and one woman to the exclusion of all others. I oppose any attempt to redefine it.
Which is pretty much a pledge to anti-equality bigotry.
Chances are that you’ve seen the pictures of Muslim children wearing faux explosive vests or holding automatic weapons, whilst praising Allah or martyrdom or some such bronze age nonsense. They’re disgusting. Any adult which thinks using a kid in such a way shouldn’t have children in their care. Rational and conscientious human beings know that using children in such cheap stunts to further a political agenda is not just unethical – it’s wrong.
The Coalition for Marriage petition is nakedly political. There’s no avoiding the fact that the Catholic church is attempting to influence the legislature, and attempting to use the authority of head teachers and teachers to co-opt children in to the campaign. This is cynical and evil.
Evil might sound like a strong and emotive word, but despite years of equality campaigns in the education system, children are still suffering from homophobic bullying at school. Some become so desperate and isolated that they suffer psychologically for years from the trauma, or even commit suicide. With it’s anti-gay bigotry preached in the school assembly hall, the Roman Catholic church is making the singling out of gay children as less equal than others as normative.
The Catholic Church school system (funded by us tax payers) is abusing children on a number of different levels. First by spreading the message that some people are less equal than others just because of their sexuality. Second by creating a poisonous environment where abuse of children by their peers can flourish. And third, by trying to infect young and impressionable minds with the septic hate which feeds the bigotry of the senior levels of the Roman Catholic church. Fourth, by exploiting the children for the political ends of a political organisation.
We wouldn’t like BNP-inspired teachers to push their hate agenda onto children, so why do we let religious teachers do the same?
It’s appalling that successive governments have cosied up to the various religions and given them special opt-outs in employment laws and school enrolment policies, despite them getting as much state funding as any non-religious state school.
Schools should be there to educate, not indoctrinate, and it’s clear we can’t trust religious schools not to do the latter.
Do we need any more reason to keep religion out of schools?