April 27, 2007

When saying in my previous post that no party aside from the SNP stands out from any other, I’d clearly forgotten about the Scottish Christian Party. I’d never heard of them before (my previous addresses in the derelict regions of Lanarkshire, which have struggled to be anything but commuter towns ever since the coal mining went away, were unsurprisingly devoutly SNP, Lib Dem, and Labour strongholds). The Scottish Christian Party looks to be a whole different sort of dangerous.

I’ve taken an extract from the wikipedia page on the party:

  1. legislation to ban abortion
  2. increased taxation on alcohol and tobacco
  3. initiatives to bring personal responsibility to bear upon self-inflicted disease (such as alcoholism)
  4. Zero Tolerance on drug possession
  5. curfews for the under 11 year olds, with mandatory intervention of child protection agencies in relation to any child 10 years or younger that is found unaccompanied on the street after 9:00pm
  6. return to use of corporal punishment in schools
  7. greater observance of a weekly day of rest (Sunday)
  8. seek limits around coastlines to preserve stocks of fish and sand eels
  9. promotion in school of chastity before marriage
  10. re-instatement of Section 2A (also known as Section 28), thus calling for the end of the promotion and “the teaching in any maintained school of the acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship.”
  11. re-introduce corporate readings from the Bible in all Scottish state schools
  12. science curriculum should reflect the evidence of creation/design in the universe
  13. will publicise the catastrophic effect of ungodly behaviour on the life expectancy and health of people, whom God loves and we should love; particularly homosexuality, excessive drinking and the use of addictive substances
  14. restore the right for parents to smack their children
  15. Mind Pollution Levy on 18 Certificate Films, DVDs, CDs, Video Games and Top Shelf magazines
  16. seek to re-establish the principle of the innocent party in a divorce being acknowledged in any divorce settlement
  17. oppose the practice of altering birth certificates to reflect gender re-orientation surgery
  18. provision of Christian religious education should be mandatory
  19. promote biblical alternatives to the current criminal justice system
  20. that Mechanical Copyright Protection enjoyed by songwriters should be extended to featured recording artists and record producers
  21. that a minimum royalty percentage (the level of which should be decided through consultation with the music industry) should be paid to featured recording artists and producers on exactly the same basis as is currently paid to songwriters

Like, WOAH. Don’t these guys sound like a bunch of wackos? It’s the anti-alcohol, anti-tobacco, anti-drug, anti-abortion, anti-sex, anti-contraception, anti-INDIVIDUAL THOUGHT BRIGADE.

1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 17, 18 are all just crazy talk. These guys clearly don’t believe in individualism. More than half of their policies are crazy talk.

A bigger concern with all of this is that there are people out there who believe that religion can, and should, be a strong part of Government. It shouldn’t. It never really has been, so why should it now.

For centuries, we operated with two controlling bodies: the church, and the state. In most people’s lives, the church was the more important part. The church had power. For instance, the church was initially the group who provided what eventually became the Poor Law: benefits, food, shelter for people temporarily down on their luck. That Scotland was allowed to keep its own Church distinct from England’s was one of the selling points of the Union — for as long as Christianity prevailed, we largely governed ourselves. Most Governments since the Union have taken the viewpoint that Scotland is a country within the UK, not an extension of England (Thatcher being the notable Prime Minister who thought otherwise), so for a long time we had our own church, and distinct representation at Westminster. One primary reason the Union has lasted so long is that we were granted rather a lot of freedom by this arrangement.

Of course, times change. I believe modern-day church attendances are around the 20% mark. Over time, Government slowly but surely sucked up the power that the church was losing, and so prior to devolution we were more centrally governed from outwith our boundaries than ever before. Devolution restored the balance somewhat (whether it’s inadvertently found a tipping point whereby independence is inevitable, only time will tell).

Within that percentage of the population who are regular churchgoers, I’d like to think that most aren’t so totalitarian as the Scottish Christian Party. I hope to see them receive as few votes as possible.