NSS Opinion

Minister’s claim that secularism pushes Muslims towards ISIS is a shameless attempt to advance Christian privilege

Posted: Wed, 09 Dec 2015 by Benjamin Jones

Stephen Crabb MP, the Secretary of State for Wales, has said that secularism and "creeping intolerance" of religion "risks pushing more young Muslims into the arms of Isil". Benjamin Jones responds, debunking his nonsensical claims.

In the latest misleading... Read More »

Tags: Secularism, Politics, 'Militant' secularism, Conservative Party

Religious education reform: mistakes of the past must be avoided

Posted: Fri, 04 Dec 2015 by Alastair Lichten

Despite many RE teachers doing their best under difficult circumstances, a growing consensus now recognises that religious education in schools needs a rethink. Alastair Lichten looks at the latest report calling for reform.

This week saw the launch of REforReal... Read More »

Tags: Education, Religious education

National occasions need not be dominated by religion – as France’s commemoration ceremony so poignantly demonstrated

Posted: Tue, 01 Dec 2015 by Keith Porteous Wood

France's recent ceremony for those killed in the Paris attacks was a moving demonstration that religiously neutral ceremonies are a powerful way to unite people regardless of faith or politics; it is something the UK could emulate for our own public ceremonies,... Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Remembrance, France

Time for the Church to come clean on the ‘Just Pray’ controversy

Posted: Tue, 01 Dec 2015 by National Secular Society

With a considerable media firestorm the Church launched a crafty piece of marketing for their 'Just Pray' campaign – centred on the accusation that their Lord's Prayer advert had been "banned" because it was "offensive". One week on, new facts raise significant questions about their claims. Read More »

Tags: Church of England

So called Lord’s Prayer ‘Ban’: It’s Winterval all over again

Posted: Mon, 23 Nov 2015 by Stephen Evans

The controversy over cinemas rejecting religious advertising appears to be another attempt to reignite the Christian victimisation narrative, argues Stephen Evans

Praising the Church of England isn't something I often find myself doing, but you've got to take... Read More »

Tags: Church of England

A timid defence of free speech is no match for Islamism. We must do better.

Posted: Wed, 18 Nov 2015 by Benjamin Jones

Society needs a much more vigorous defence of free speech than the one we are getting, with the 'elite' of society in academia, religion and politics offering a feeble and timorous defence, writes Benjamin Jones.

Speaking at a debate on "freedom of speech... Read More »

Tags: Islamism, Freedom of Expression

Scottish evangelists identify Paganism as one of the “biggest threats to Western civilisation”

Posted: Mon, 16 Nov 2015 by Alistair McBay

After the world suffered another grim reminder of the merciless Islamist ideology, the Solas Centre for Public Christianity warned instead that the re-emergence of Paganism in Scotland was one of the biggest threats to civilization.

On Sunday 15 November 2015... Read More »

Tags: Scotland, Christianity

Operation Christmas Child: Christian fundamentalism, gift-wrapped

Posted: Thu, 12 Nov 2015 by Stephen Evans

The Operation Christmas Child 'shoebox' appeal is a front for a project to convert children in predominantly Muslim countries to literalist Christianity. Parents should give it a wide berth, argues Stephen Evans.

My heart sank this week when picking my daughter... Read More »

Tags: Girl Guides, Charity, Samaritans Purse, Christmas

Mammon, not God, should reign on Sundays

Posted: Thu, 12 Nov 2015 by Oliver Kamm

Sunday trading laws frustrate free enterprise and fail to boost religion. It's time to scrap these petty, scolding restrictions, argues Oliver Kamm Read More »

Tags: Trading Restrictions

Ted Cruz says the President of the United States should be “on his knees” before God “every day”

Posted: Mon, 09 Nov 2015 by Benjamin Jones

Young Americans might be turning away from Christianity, but the American religious right is more audacious than ever – and their rhetoric about 'religious freedom' barely conceals their theocratic aspirations, writes Benjamin Jones.

Ted Cruz, advocate... Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Islamism, USA, Christianity

Publicly funded services shouldn't be a platform to proselytise

Posted: Fri, 06 Nov 2015 by Stephen Evans

Any attempt to give faith-based organisations more room to discuss religion when running public services risks making their services less inclusive. Besides, public money shouldn't be funding evangelism, argues Stephen Evans.

A new report from the Christian... Read More »

Tags: Equality & Human Rights, Public Services

Bishops show why Church and State should split

Posted: Wed, 28 Oct 2015 by GP Taylor

The Church of England is now widely regarded as irrelevant in the political and secular society that it seeks to minister and its bishops have no right to be part of our legislature, argues best-selling author and former Anglican priest GP Taylor. Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Church of England, Disestablishment

Some good news for free speech on campuses

Posted: Wed, 21 Oct 2015 by Benjamin Jones

With too many instances of campus censorship to list, it's easy to be pessimistic about freedom of expression on campus, but there are a few promising signs of progress, led by students, writes Benjamin Jones.

I've spoken on two university campuses in the past... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Universities

The unreasonableness of ‘reasonable accommodation’

Posted: Fri, 16 Oct 2015 by Stephen Evans

Calls to introduce a new workplace duty of 'reasonable accommodation' for religion and belief are a flawed solution to a problem that doesn't really exist, argues Stephen Evans.

The UK has some of the most comprehensive anti-discrimination laws in the world.... Read More »

Tags: Equality & Human Rights

God “is the man who saves people” – a parent discovers what Religious Observance in school has taught their child

Posted: Wed, 14 Oct 2015 by A Parent

A parent writes of their shock at discovering Religious Observance in the non-denominational Scottish school attended by their daughter, and gives their perspective on the problems caused by archaic Religious Observance rules in Scottish schools. Read More »

Tags: Education, Collective Worship, Scotland, Parents Perspective

Peter Ball sex abuse case: 20 questions that must be answered

Posted: Wed, 07 Oct 2015 by Keith Porteous Wood

Any genuine inquiry into the handling of allegations of child sex abuse by Bishop Peter Ball must answer key questions about alleged cover-ups by the Church, police and CPS, argues Keith Porteous Wood

The National Secular Society has been closely monitoring... Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Church of England, George Carey

Warwick Student Union have now done the right thing – but universities themselves must step up to defend free speech

Posted: Mon, 28 Sep 2015 by Benjamin Jones

After taking relentless criticism on Twitter and Facebook, Warwick Student Union has reversed its decision to block Maryam Namazie from speaking on campus. Though the right decision has been made in the end, universities themselves must step up to defend free... Read More »

Tags: Freedom of Expression, Universities

A parent’s perspective: collective worship and evangelism in schools

Posted: Thu, 17 Sep 2015 by A Parent

Even where parents have the option of a community school, securing a secular education can be difficult. One parent offers their perspective on negotiating appropriate boundaries which respect children's rights to form their own beliefs. Read More »

Tags: Education, Collective Worship, Parents Perspective, evangelism in schools

Assisted Dying Bill: The Church has no right to deny dignity in death

Posted: Thu, 10 Sep 2015 by Keith Porteous Wood

The media give too much weight to the views of faith leaders who have failed to deal with the central issue of assisted dying, which is alleviating the suffering of others, argues Keith Porteous Wood. Read More »

Tags: Assisted Dying

The media now say ‘Islamophobia’ without question; but insist on the “so-called Islamic State”

Posted: Thu, 10 Sep 2015 by Benjamin Jones

Reporting of the deeply troubling rise in anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim attacks demonstrates that the term 'Islamophobia' has, worryingly, been widely accepted by the media. Read More »

Tags: Islam, Islamism, Community Cohesion

Sectarianism in modern Britain

Posted: Wed, 09 Sep 2015 by Iram Ramzan

From Iranian dissidents fearing deportation after seeking asylum from theocracy, to ex-Muslims driven from their homes in Bradford, Iram Ramzan looks at some worrying examples of sectarianism threatening Britain's reputation for tolerance. Read More »

Tags: sectarianism, Ex-Muslim, asylum

Let Ofsted inspect religious education in faith schools

Posted: Wed, 09 Sep 2015 by Stephen Evans

Religious education should receive the same scrutiny as any other area of the curriculum – and be inspected by Ofsted, argues Stephen Evans.

I recently came across a local newspaper headline about a school being praised for its religious education. As... Read More »

Tags: Education, Religious education, Faith Schools

The encroachment of reactionary Islamism in academic life

Posted: Tue, 08 Sep 2015 by Stefano Bonino

Universities and academics seeking to challenge anti-Muslim prejudice should promote genuine Muslim human rights groups rather than unrepresentative Islamists seeking to advance their own reactionary agenda, argues Dr Stefano Bonino. Read More »

Tags: Islamism, Universities, Community Cohesion, Extremism

Students forced to lead prayers and made to attend Mass – the reality of faith schools for non-religious pupils

Posted: Thu, 03 Sep 2015 by A Pupil

A Sixth Former gives a student's account of what it's like to attend a faith school if you aren't religious, and shows the reality of some faith schools for pupils who don't share the school's enthusiasm for religion. Read More »

Tags: Education, Faith Schools, student

The BBC is failing to respond to fair criticism of its religious output

Posted: Tue, 11 Aug 2015 by Keith Porteous Wood

The NSS has objected numerous times over the past half century to the exclusion of non-believers from BBC Radio 4's Thought for the Day but it now seems as though the BBC will not even consider objections to the programme, raising questions about how the Corporation... Read More »

Tags: BBC, Thought for the Day