We Need Rights Charter … Christians face prejudice too
(John Coulter, Irish Daily Star)
The Dáil and Stormont need to join forces and celebrate the 800th anniversary of the signing of the famous Magna Carta by introducing the Irish Freedom Charter to protect evangelical Christians.
It should not be dismissed as a DUP election stunt ahead of May’s Westminster poll. If successful, the Conscience Clause will offer real protection for evangelical Christians from persecution from militant atheists, humanists, agnostics, communists, and the well-organised gay community.
While campaign groups warn about the growth in Islamophobia and homophobia, society should not ignore the threat posed by Christophobia – an active campaign of hatred to persecute anyone who believes in Biblical Christianity.
As an evangelical Christian, I remain convinced Section 75 of the North’s equality laws, along with the hate crime legislation, are powerful enough to protect me.
Givan’s Conscience Clause may give a little more legal muscle to these existing laws, but it doesn’t go far enough, even though it’s a good starting point which any responsible Christian church has a moral and spiritual duty to support.
But what is really needed is an all-island Freedom Charter which protects the rights of individual Christians.
The big weakness of Givan’s Clause is that while it gives added protection to Christians from the hate mongers who peddle Christaphobia, it doesn’t protect ordinary evangelical Christians like me from militant Bible-bashing fundamentalists.
Known as ‘The Fundies’, these extremist Christians still think they are living in Oliver Cromwell’s Puritan era and behave like the cinema character played by horror legend Vincent Price in the Hammer blockbuster, Witchfinder General.
Who protects evangelical Christians from ‘Fundies’ who refuse a married couple church membership because the wife does not wear a hat to worship?
What about the ‘Fundies’ who ban women from wearing trousers in church; ban them from speaking in church or holding clerical posts, and reduce their role to nothing more than religious trolley-dollies?
What about the ‘Fundies’ who order men to ‘tone down’ their ties because the colours are too loud for church?
What about the fundamentalist eejits who maintain that autism is a punishment from God and anyone with the condition to doomed to Hell?
Equally importantly, who protects evangelical Christians from the ‘Fundie’ clerics who make knee-jerk decisions based on unsubstantiated tittle-tattle and gossip in their congregations and don’t bother their asses to check the facts?
Unfortunately, many of these ‘Fundies’ adopt the view once held by Nazi tyrant Adolf Hitler – tell a lie often enough and people will believe it.
Some finger-pointing moralising ‘Fundies’ have no concept of the law. They simply fire out their hideous accusations conceived in the depths of their imagination. They don’t care if it destroys families and people’s reputations – they just like to hear the sound of their own condemning voices.
I don’t need Givan’s Clause to protect me from atheists. My deeply personal evangelical Christian faith is strong enough to withstand whatever bile they hurl at me.
What I really need is Freedom Charter to protect me from ranting ‘Fundies’ who behave like the Biblical Pharisees. So sign up to Coulter’s Charter today!