Its been a bad year for our friends in the Scottish Secular Society – they have stumbled from one ridiculous extreme to another and one defeat to another. As their anti-religious rantings have become better known to the wider Scottish public it has become interesting to see the direction they have been trying to take. In their attempts to play politics and be clever they have failed. But their latest debacle is quite quite special so I thought it was worth sharing….first let me remind you of a couple of lowlights from 2014.
1) They had a failed campaign to get the religious observance in Scottish schools (which are traditionally and legally Christian – non-denominational but not non-Christian) moved from being opt out to opt in. In the course of this campaign they declared that they were FOR religious observance, denying that they really wanted religious observance removed. So they became the first secular society in the world to actually campaign for religious observance in schools.
2) Then they had a failed attempt to try and import American style creation/culture wars in Scotland. They had a ridiculous petition to the Scottish parliament seeking to get politicians to tell teachers what they should and should not teach. They were using the bogeyman of creationism to try and scare politicians into removing Christian and other religious influence from schools. It failed because they were not able to offer one single example of creationism being taught in any Scottish school science class. Now they have been reduced to calling in American creation war specialists to try and stir things up.
3) They then failed to speak out when their founder posted a series of anti-Catholic rants in attacking the new Labour leader Jim Murphy – calling him a pope loving militant catholic fanatic. (Mr Otton in fact never refers to Jim Murphy without using the term ‘Catholic” in a derogatory way). Given the history of sectarianism in the West of Scotland and especially in Glasgow where SSS are based, I fully expected them to dissociate themselves from these inflammatory remarks. It would have been the wise and politic thing to do. Instead they defended them – and thus because a secular society declaring that a politician should be judged on their religious beliefs!
But they have kept the best for last. It is almost impossible to believe but SSS are now the only secular society in the Western world calling for Muslim Imams to lead religious observance in Scottish schools!
Given this surreal and pythonesque behaviour – doubtless done in a cynical manner to try and get people to hate Christians leading religious observance as well – you will be hearing a lot less from me about SSS. They have become a parody of militant secularism. Give them enough rope and they will hang themselves….I don’t need to do anything more!
Meanwhile I wish you all and our SSS friends – all the best for 2015. There are good people within the SSS and even those who have a more irrational hatred of all things Christian, are still human beings made in the image of God. We pray that they would come to know and love the One they so vehemently deny and hate. May this coming year be a year of ‘enlightenment’ for us all…who knows but this may be the year when the light rolls back the Darkness!