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National Secular Society

Challenging Religious Privilege


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Your daily media briefing - Friday 7 August


In the Media is our daily collection of news and commentary related to secularism, available delivered to your inbox. You can also read the latest news and opinion and listen to our podcasts on our website.


Secularism in the media


Veteran councillor calls for Hate Crime Bill to be scrapped

A veteran councillor has joined colleagues in voicing his opposition to the Scottish Government's proposed Hate Crime Bill, insisting it is a major threat to free speech.

The Gazette


'The risk to authors under new Scottish hate crime law'

The use of the criminal law to control the expression of views involves a delicate balance if the law is not to become repressive, says Alexander McCall Smith.

The Scotsman


Shamima Begum school brings in ‘robust’ measures to spot radicalisation in pupils

The school that Shamima Begum and two other schoolgirls attended before they left the UK to become Islamic State brides today said it had introduced "robust" initiatives to prevent pupils being radicalised.

Evening Standard


Teacher says he was fired for calling Muhammad a 'false prophet'

Joshua Sutcliffe claims he was "constructively dismissed" from a Catholic school in London for making the statement on one of his YouTube videos.

Premier Christian News


Alliance for Independence chief says he was wrong on gay marriage

Alliance for Independence chief Dave Thompson has said he was wrong to have voted against gay marriage.

The National


Mosque bomber admits to making explosives in prison

Black Country mosque bomber Pavlo Lapshyn has admitted making an explosive substance in his cell at a maximum-security jail.

Express and Star


Author Salman Rushdie warns 'cancel culture' is a threat to freedom of speech

The Anglo-Indian author has long been a staunch defender of free speech and his own life was under threat for many years after Iran's spiritual leader Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa against him in 1989, following the publication of his novel The Satanic Verses.

Mail Online


'It’s time to call out the antisemitism within Britain’s Muslim communities'

Social integration appears to hold the key to reducing antisemitic prejudice within British Muslim communities, says Rakib Ehsan.

The JC


'LGBT people leaving Poland as post-vote mood grows hostile'

"While gays and lesbians have never had the legal right to marry or to form civil unions in Poland, as they can in much of Europe, many felt confident until not long ago that Polish society was becoming more accepting and that those rights would one day come. They have instead faced a furious backlash from the Catholic Church and the government."

The Associated Press


'Preserve our traditions of religious freedom and church-state separation'

America's legal framework has produced remarkable religious freedom for people of all faiths and none, says Melissa Rogers.



'Has India closed the door on secularism?'

"The space to debate, dissent, question and demand a separation of the Church and the State, as laid down in the Indian constitution, has been given a quiet burial."

Kaleej Times


The latest from the NSS


We all need the freedom to offend – including the most marginalised

Scotland's new hate crime bill could easily be weaponised to silence any speech deemed offensive. This will disempower, rather than protect, society's most vulnerable, says Megan Manson.


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