NSS Opinion

The Church, gratitude and the erosion of innocence

Posted: Wed, 11 Mar 2015 by Conor

A parent writes about the problem of innocuous children's activities run with a hidden religious agenda, and defends his right to raise his children how he wishes, without organisations using playgroups as a cover for proselytising to children. Read More »

Tags: Education, Childrens rights & welfare, Parents Perspective, evangelism in schools

The Christian Legal Centre makes another attempt to gain privileges for Christians in the workplace

Posted: Mon, 02 Mar 2015 by Terry Sanderson

The Christian Legal Centre's latest 'discrimination' claim follows a familiar pattern – but its use of dissembling tactics shouldn't be permitted to manipulate a change in equality laws, argues Terry Sanderson.

So, here we go again. Another evangelical... Read More »

Tags: Equality & Human Rights, Discrimination, Workplace

Charlie Hebdo: a perspective one month on

Posted: Wed, 18 Feb 2015 by Sadikur Rahman

25 years after the Rushdie Affair, one month after the atrocities in Paris and days after the attack on a free speech seminar in Copenhagen, Sadikur Rahman looks at what lessons free expression activists and opponents have taken.

Another European city, this... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Islam

Is the Christian immune from plane crashes?

Posted: Tue, 17 Feb 2015 by Alistair McBay

Alistair McBay reports on Scottish Calvinism's attack on secularism, and offers his reaction to the rhetoric and tactics of the Free Church of Scotland. Read More »

Tags: Christianity, Scotland, 'Militant' secularism

A duty to mock

Posted: Mon, 16 Feb 2015 by Manfredi La Manna

Manfredi La Manna argues that the response to the Charlie Hebdo murders has exposed unpalatable truths in both the conservative and progressive camps. Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Islam

Sharia law, apostasy and secularism

Posted: Thu, 12 Feb 2015 by Gita Sahgal

Gita Sahgal argues that opposing religious fundamentalism is not a distraction from 'real' politics - the demands of social justice and civil liberties - but a pre-condition for achieving them. Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Secularism

The dishonesty of religious lobbying shines like a beacon

Posted: Tue, 03 Feb 2015 by Terry Sanderson

NSS President Terry Sanderson argues that the churches have changed their lobbying tactics, and are trying to impose their doctrines through misdirection and 'slippery slope' arguments.

The reaction of the Church of England and the Catholic Church to the debate... Read More »

Tags: Christianity, Healthcare, Church of England, Catholic Church

BBC Panorama, “the battle for British Islam” and the nonsense of “peaceful” or “violent” Muslims

Posted: Thu, 22 Jan 2015 by Benjamin Jones

NSS communications officer Benjamin Jones argues that the problem of Islamism is obscured by politicians and others simplistically categorising Muslims as either 'peaceful' or 'violent'.

On 12 January, BBC Panorama featured British Muslims campaigning for a... Read More »

Tags: Islam, Freedom of Expression, Secularism

Rendering unto Caesar

Posted: Mon, 19 Jan 2015 by Alistair McBay

The established Church throws stones from inside its Government-subsidised glass cathedral, argues Alistair McBay. Read More »

Tags: Church of England, Disestablishment

Charlie Hebdo Editorial: Je Suis Charlie Means Je Suis Secularism

Posted: Thu, 15 Jan 2015 by Admin

This is a translation of the editorial from the first Charlie Hebdo published since the Paris attacks. It is reproduced here in solidarity with Charlie Hebdo. Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Islam, Secularism

MPs want God at centre of local democracy

Posted: Thu, 15 Jan 2015 by Imran Khan

When Conservative councillor Imran Khan opted out of Christian prayers at council meetings he was subject to ostracization, abuse and deselection. He's urging MPs to keep sectarianism out of local politics by voting against the Local Government (Religious Etc. Observances) Bill. Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Council Prayers

British media fails the free speech test

Posted: Fri, 09 Jan 2015 by Sadikur Rahman

The British print and media press's response to the Charlie Hebdo attack has involved victim blaming, obfuscation and self-censorship, argues Sadikur Rahman. Read More »

Tags: Islam, Freedom of Expression

GP Taylor: Why faith has no place in our schools

Posted: Thu, 08 Jan 2015 by GP Taylor

Many principled people of faith oppose religious privilege in state schools. Former Anglican priest GP Taylor makes an impassioned case for secularism as a basis for equally inclusive education. Read More »

Tags: Education, Faith Schools, Community Cohesion, Secularism

NSS statement following Charlie Hebdo attack

Posted: Wed, 07 Jan 2015 by Terry Sanderson

Restrictions on criticising or satirising religion, especially Islam, have hugely increased since Salman Rushdie was burned in effigy and driven into hiding over The Satanic Verses in 1988. That he was reviled and those attempting his murder not even charged... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression

Churches, charity and the conferring of privilege

Posted: Tue, 06 Jan 2015 by Alistair McBay

There are many ways to do good, including campaigning for human rights and equality over discrimination and prejudice, but charitable work is not a bargaining chip for special privileges, argues Alistair McBay. Read More »

Tags: Charity, Scotland, Big Society

If we exempt ritual slaughter from animal welfare laws we open the door to far worse crimes

Posted: Mon, 05 Jan 2015 by Matthew Syed

Matthew Syed argues that the right to religious freedom is not an absolute right to do what you like, and that religious exemptions for ritual slaughter are a slippery slope into far worse crimes. Read More »

Tags: Religious Slaughter, Religious Freedom

Law Society, religion and the law: reasons to be cheerful

Posted: Tue, 23 Dec 2014 by Sadikur Rahman

The last year has seen a number of successful campaigns against attempts to impose religion in our secular legal system. Council member Sadikur Rahman looks at hopes for optimism in 2015. Read More »

Tags: Religious Law, Lawyers Secular Society, Law, Sharia

Government’s GCSE subject content review is another missed opportunity

Posted: Tue, 23 Dec 2014 by Stephen Evans

The Government's proposal to reform the religious studies GCSE subject content falls far short of what's really needed, argues Stephen Evans.

The Department for Education is currently consulting on its proposed subject content for religious studies GCSE and... Read More »

Tags: Education, Religious education

A strange case of blasphemy

Posted: Fri, 19 Dec 2014 by Benjamin Jones

The Sony crisis is almost identical to the Satanic Verses controversy, or the Mohammed cartoon riots. Benjamin Jones argues that Sony's capitulation to North Korea has all the hallmarks of religious blasphemy cases, and that the state religion of North Korea... Read More »

Tags: Blasphemy

Britain First – foot soldiers of a ‘Christian Nation’?

Posted: Mon, 08 Dec 2014 by Alastair Lichten

When mainstream politicians endorse the 'Christian Nation' narrative they feed both Muslim and Christian persecution complexes and pander to the far-right, argues Alastair Lichten.

Elements in the current government like to promote the dog whistle message that... Read More »

Tags: Christianity, Islam, Community Cohesion, Discrimination, Multiculturalism

The Christmas nativity: Let it go! Let it go!

Posted: Tue, 02 Dec 2014 by Stephen Evans

After it this week emerged that some school nativity plays are losing their religion, Stephen Evans argues that schools should be free to innovate and have a bit of fun with their festive plays without po-faced nativity police telling them they can't.

Predictable... Read More »

Tags: Education, Christmas

Tower Hamlets and the Dangers of Communal Politics

Posted: Thu, 20 Nov 2014 by Rumy Hasan

With the embedding in of multiculturalism, communal, sectarian politics are becoming prevalent in many towns and cities with significant religious-ethnic minority communities. Rumy Hasan argues that many candidates now seek votes from people on the basis of their religion, ethnicity, and country of origin, rather than on political ideology. Read More »

Tags: Politics, Multiculturalism, Community Cohesion

Mission creep in the anti-war left

Posted: Wed, 19 Nov 2014 by Benjamin Jones

Video has emerged of the Left Unity political party voting on whether to endorse the Islamic State. Although the amendment was easily defeated, Benjamin Jones argues that this is just the latest flirtation in a long courtship between elements of the British... Read More »

Tags: Islamism, ISIS, Iraq, Middle East

Parent's perspective: The Collective Worship dilemma

Posted: Tue, 18 Nov 2014 by A Parent

One parent speaks out about the damaging impact of excluding her young child from mandatory collective worship in school, and how withdrawal isn't really an option at all. Read More »

Tags: Collective Worship, Education, Christianity, Childrens rights & welfare, Parents Perspective

Who are the true Muslims – all or none?

Posted: Thu, 13 Nov 2014 by Matthew Syed

Moderate believers argue that Isis has misinterpreted the Koran. But no one can determine who is right or wrong, argues Matthew Syed. Read More »

Tags: Islam, Islamism, Tony Blair, ISIS