NSS Opinion

Let’s point out that the ‘Je ne suis pas Charlie’ brigade are helping the terrorists win

Let’s point out that the ‘Je ne suis pas Charlie’ brigade are helping the terrorists win

Posted: Sun, 07 Jan 2018 by Chris Sloggett

Three years after the Charlie Hebdo massacre, Chris Sloggett says it is a moral duty to push back against those who invent outrages to impugn the magazine's reputation. Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Blasphemy

The Minister for Faith went on a tour of Anglican cathedrals and all we got was a lousy report

The Minister for Faith went on a tour of Anglican cathedrals and all we got was a lousy report

Posted: Thu, 04 Jan 2018 by Stephen Evans

Stephen Evans questions the point of a Minister for Faith and says his recent tour of all of England's Anglican cathedrals was a waste of ministerial time and taxpayers' money. Read More »

Tags: Religious privilege, Church repairs

Case study: Difficulty exercising the right to withdraw from collective worship

Case study: Difficulty exercising the right to withdraw from collective worship

Posted: Wed, 03 Jan 2018 by A Pupil

Thanks to campaigning by the NSS, sixth formers have the right to withdraw themselves from collective worship. But faith schools often make this nigh-on-impossible, as this pupil's story from one academy shows. Read More »

Tags: Collective worship, Casework focus, Sixth form, Education

Yes, secularism is good for gender equality

Yes, secularism is good for gender equality

Posted: Wed, 03 Jan 2018 by Megan Manson

Western academics who claim that secularism undermines women's rights are not merely wrong; their assertions are a slap in the face of women fighting for their rights under religious tyranny, says Megan Manson. Read More »

Tags: Gender Equality

It's time to disestablish the Church of England

It's time to disestablish the Church of England

Posted: Tue, 02 Jan 2018 by Prof. Steven Kettell

As the NSS prepares to send a major report on the subject to MPs, Prof. Steven Kettell says the establishment of the Church of England is incongruous with the beliefs and attitudes of the people it affects. Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Secularism, Disestablishment

Secularism is a challenge to religion’s political power and privilege, not people of faith

Secularism is a challenge to religion’s political power and privilege, not people of faith

Posted: Fri, 22 Dec 2017 by Stephen Evans

Some Christians use the Christmas period to attack secularism for its challenge to their sense of entitlement. But Stephen Evans says the faithful have far more to fear from religious fanatics than secularists. Read More »

Tags: Christmas, Christianity, Secularism

Only reform of the law can tackle the Church's temptation to cover up abuse

Only reform of the law can tackle the Church's temptation to cover up abuse

Posted: Fri, 15 Dec 2017 by Richard Scorer

After three weeks of damning evidence at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, Richard Scorer says mandatory reporting of institutional abuse is necessary to prevent churches from covering it up. Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Catholic Church

The Christian ‘legal army’ in hundreds of court battles worldwide

The Christian ‘legal army’ in hundreds of court battles worldwide

Posted: Thu, 14 Dec 2017 by Claire Provost & Ella Milburn

Women's rights advocates say the US legal advocacy group Alliance Defending Freedom is "exporting extreme ideologies worldwide" against sexual and reproductive rights. Claire Provost and Ella Milburn investigate. Read More »

Tags: Gender Equality, Equality & Human Rights, Christianity

Pakistan’s capitulation to extremists sets a dangerous precedent

Pakistan’s capitulation to extremists sets a dangerous precedent

Posted: Thu, 07 Dec 2017 by Basit Mahmood

Pakistan's government, military and opposition parties have given in to the demands of a fundamentalist mob. Basit Mahmood says this is a blow to those who wish to remain true to the secular vision of Pakistan's founder. Read More »

Tags: Pakistan, Islamism, Theocracy

Only secularism can defeat the emboldened Hindu right

Only secularism can defeat the emboldened Hindu right

Posted: Fri, 01 Dec 2017 by Chris Sloggett

Violent threats look set to censor a film which was due for UK release today. It's the latest sign of rising Hindu fundamentalism. In response, Chris Sloggett says, we must make sure no religion gets special treatment. Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Secularism, Hindu Nationalism, Caste

Home schooling debate must prompt wider discussion of children’s rights

Home schooling debate must prompt wider discussion of children’s rights

Posted: Thu, 30 Nov 2017 by Alastair Lichten

As supporters of a new Bill aim to see home schooling in England registered for the first time, education and schools campaigner Alastair Lichten says children's independent rights must receive greater focus. Read More »

Tags: Education, Home schooling, Unregistered schools

A lesson in silencing dissent: the controversy of hijab in schools

A lesson in silencing dissent: the controversy of hijab in schools

Posted: Tue, 28 Nov 2017 by Yasmin Rehman

Yasmin Rehman was among campaigners who recently met Ofsted's chief inspector to discuss veiling in schools. Now, she writes, some powerful Muslims are making sinister efforts to silence her and her fellow activists. Read More »

Tags: Education, Islam, Gender Equality

Big ideas for religious education?

Big ideas for religious education?

Posted: Thu, 23 Nov 2017 by Alastair Lichten

The latest report into the problems with religious education reiterates the need to start with a fundamental examination of the subject's purpose. But, Alastair Lichten wonders, do the proposals go far enough? Read More »

Tags: Education, Religious education

Our business was harassed by Christian fundamentalists – now it’s the best known in Lewis

Our business was harassed by Christian fundamentalists – now it’s the best known in Lewis

Posted: Wed, 22 Nov 2017 by Martin Flett

The NSS recently reported on a shop owner in Stornoway who was harassed over her decision to open her shop on Sundays. Now Martin Flett, Leona Rawlinson's partner, says the business has been flooded with support. Read More »

Tags: Scotland, Sabbatarianism

State recognition of Islamic nikah marriages is no way to empower Muslim women

State recognition of Islamic nikah marriages is no way to empower Muslim women

Posted: Wed, 22 Nov 2017 by Sadikur Rahman

Most women in the UK who have Islamic weddings are missing out on their legal rights. The solution to this problem must not lie in the automatic registration of Islamic marriages, argues Sadikur Rahman. Read More »

Tags: Islam, Marriage

Who controls religious education?

Who controls religious education?

Posted: Thu, 16 Nov 2017 by Stephen Evans

Necessary reforms of religious education are being frustrated by religion's lingering influence. It's time to liberate RE from the vested interests, argues Stephen Evans. Read More »

Tags: Education, Religious education

De facto blasphemy laws are alive and well

De facto blasphemy laws are alive and well

Posted: Thu, 16 Nov 2017 by Chris Sloggett

It is now 38 years since Monty Python's Life of Brian was released in November 1979, despite protests. But Chris Sloggett says we aren't truly free to engage in blasphemy today. Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Blasphemy

The folly of the civil service’s ‘faith and belief champion’

The folly of the civil service’s ‘faith and belief champion’

Posted: Wed, 15 Nov 2017 by Chris Sloggett

A new civil service post may be intended to promote 'inclusion'. But insistently bringing religion into the workplace will promote it and encourage an assertive form of selfishness at public expense, says Chris Sloggett. Read More »

Tags: Public Services, Religion & Belief, Religious privilege

Interfaith must embrace secularism

Interfaith must embrace secularism

Posted: Mon, 13 Nov 2017 by Megan Manson

Interfaith Week is underway. Megan Manson says interfaith dialogue must embrace secularist principles to remain relevant, effective and inclusive. Read More »

Tags: Secularism, Religion & Belief

The 'war on Christmas' is coming

The 'war on Christmas' is coming

Posted: Fri, 10 Nov 2017 by Alastair Lichten

The myth of a culture war on Christmas may be comical and its claims endlessly debunked, but its promotion is part of a campaign for Christian supremacy, argues Alastair Lichten. Read More »

Tags: Christmas, 'Militant' Secularism, 'Christianophobia', Christianity

Whence secularism in Africa?

Whence secularism in Africa?

Posted: Wed, 25 Oct 2017 by Leo Igwe

Secularism and controversies regarding the relationship between religion and state have deep roots in Africa's socio–political history, but are increasingly relevant to many pressing human rights issues, argues Leo Igwe. Read More »

Tags: Secularism, Africa, Religious Freedom, Freedom from Religion

Abuse Inquiry to investigate Benedictine institutions

Abuse Inquiry to investigate Benedictine institutions

Posted: Tue, 24 Oct 2017 by Richard Scorer

An upcoming hearing of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse will be an opportunity to examine the reality behind the Catholic Church's claims that it has transformed its approach to child protection, says Richard Scorer. Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Child Abuse

Protecting freedom of belief for the many and the few

Protecting freedom of belief for the many and the few

Posted: Mon, 23 Oct 2017 by Megan Manson

Ahead of International Freedom of Religion or Belief Day, Megan Manson looks at democratic secularism's changing role in an age of the non-religious minority and rising diversity. Read More »

Tags: Religious Freedom, Freedom from Religion, Religion & Belief, Secularisation

To spank or not to spank – a biblical right?

To spank or not to spank – a biblical right?

Posted: Sat, 21 Oct 2017 by Alistair McBay

With Christian groups leading the opposition to Scotland's new smacking ban, Alistair McBay explores the many instances of Christian schools and campaigners demanding the ability to spank children as a religious or even biblical right. Read More »

Tags: Scotland

Book review: ‘The rage: the vicious circle of Islamist and far-right extremism’

Book review: ‘The rage: the vicious circle of Islamist and far-right extremism’

Posted: Tue, 17 Oct 2017 by Dale Claridge

Julia Ebner's new book explores the symbiotic relationship between Islamist and (other) far right extremism, how Islamist and anti-Muslim narratives feed each other, and how we can challenge both. Read More »

Tags: Reviews, Extremism, Anti-Muslim bigotry, Sectarianism

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