Tags: Scotland

Sturgeon’s praise for Catholic schools will exacerbate Scotland’s tribal divisions

Posted: Wed, 28 Feb 2018 by Neil Barber

Catholic schools are no remedy for a society facing ingrained sectarian division, writes Neil Barber. In praising them Scotland's first minister has shown a willingness to sacrifice social cohesion to reach a block vote. Read More »

Tags: Scotland, Education, Faith Schools, Catholic Church

Fundamentalists feel the Force of Star Wars

Posted: Tue, 09 Jan 2018 by Megan Manson

Sabbatarians on Lewis claim a right to impose their beliefs on others, including by banning screenings of Star Wars on Sundays. Megan Manson asks if they would make these demands if Jediism was a recognised religion. Read More »

Tags: Scotland, Sabbatarianism

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

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

The legacy of decades of abuse in a Catholic children's home

Posted: Thu, 21 Sep 2017 by Mark Boules

Hundreds of children died at Smyllum Park, a home in Lanarkshire run by the Catholic Church between 1864 and 1981. Mark Boules reflects on what is left after decades of abuse at the home. Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Catholic Church, Scotland

The Catholic Church’s abuse scandal shows no sign of abating

Posted: Mon, 15 May 2017 by Richard Scorer

After forty years the Catholic Church is still more interested in protecting itself and its clerical culture than in truly eradicating child abuse, writes Richard Scorer. Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Scotland, Child Abuse

The Catholic Church in Scotland is still playing the victim card to stifle criticism

Posted: Thu, 06 Apr 2017 by Alistair McBay

There is some lingering anti-Catholic bigotry in Scotland, writes NSS vice president Alistair McBay, but the Church is playing victim while supporting a segregated education system which can only worsen prejudice.

"As one brought up a Catholic, I know only... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Scotland

Sabbatarians have imposed their dogma on islanders for long enough, help them put a stop to it

Posted: Thu, 08 Dec 2016 by Alistair McBay

The National Secular Society is helping campaigners on the Isle of Lewis open a sports centre on a Sunday, currently blocked by a council who won't allow it on the Sabbath. It's hardly the first time Sabbatarians on Lewis have played this game.

The attempt... Read More »

Tags: Scotland, FiSH

Scotland is a mosaic of religions and beliefs – but the research shows people turning away from politicised faith

Posted: Thu, 24 Mar 2016 by Alistair McBay

Scotland is a mosaic of beliefs and non-beliefs where individuals are free to hold a belief, change it or not have one at all. But it's not hard to see why people are rejecting the organised and politicised aspects of religion, writes Alistair McBay. Read More »

Tags: Religion & Belief, Scotland, Church of Scotland, Statistics

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

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

A very confused and immoderate Moderator

Posted: Wed, 20 May 2015 by Alistair McBay

Alistair McBay examines the confused and immoderate arguments of the new Moderator of the Free Church of Scotland. Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Scotland, Education

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

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

The Bishops, the Catholic vote and the Referendum

Posted: Fri, 10 Oct 2014 by Alistair McBay

Alistair McBay argues that a growing political alliance between the leadership of the Catholic Church in Scotland and SNP has implications which stretch far beyond the Referendum campaign and threaten to revive religious identity politics.

"Most people still... Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Catholic Church, Scotland

Religion “mustn't cause violence”

Posted: Wed, 10 Sep 2014 by Alistair McBay

Both media commentators and politicians seem keen to claim religion as a cause for good deeds but determined not to acknowledge it as a contributing factor to bad ones, argues Alistair McBay. Read More »

Tags: Community Cohesion, Child Abuse, Scotland

Embedded religious privilege triumphs on Scottish education issues

Posted: Mon, 12 May 2014 by Alistair McBay

National Secular Society's spokesperson for Scotland, Alistair McBay, argues that the Scottish Parliament has helped entrench religious privilege in the country's education system.

Tuesday 6 May was a busy day in the Scottish Parliament which saw a triumph... Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Education, Scotland

The God question: A tale of two adverts

Posted: Tue, 07 Jan 2014 by Alistair McBay

Alistair McBay examines the PR campaign behind an educational resource that seeks to bring creationism and intelligent design into the science classrooms of Scotland. Read More »

Tags: Education, Scotland, Creationism

The God Question – a Trojan horse for Intelligent Design

Posted: Fri, 29 Nov 2013 by Alistair McBay

Intelligent Design is back in shiny new packaging, labelled as 'evidence based and balanced' and getting into the science classrooms in Scotland, argues Alistair McBay. Read More »

Tags: Education, Scotland, Creationism

Don’t give in to the Gideons

Posted: Wed, 20 Nov 2013 by Veronica Wikman

The Scottish Government must take action to remove the proselytising opportunity presented by religious observance in our schools, argues Veronica Wikman. Read More »

Tags: Religious Observance, Scotland

A search for truth, or a trojan horse for religion in schools?

Posted: Tue, 12 Nov 2013 by Alistair McBay

Alistair McBay questions the objectivity of a new educational resource that claims to "review, objectively and dispassionately, the case for the existence of God". Read More »

Tags: Education, Scotland, Creationism

Scotland’s young people deserve better than this

Posted: Tue, 29 Oct 2013 by Gary McLelland

Young people have a human right to sexual health and relationships education. Something which the religious minority in Scotland is taking away, argues Gary McLelland.

Scotland, like many areas, is working to promote safe and healthy relationships, especially... Read More »

Tags: Education, Scotland

Conscientious objection in Scotland: a worrying precedent

Posted: Wed, 19 Jun 2013 by Louise Finer

With NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde seeking to appeal the ruling for the allowance of conscientious exemption from abortion procedures, Louise Finer of Reproductive Health Matters argues that judges must not forget the rights of women – to health, autonomy, dignity and respect Read More »

Tags: Scotland, Reproductive Rights, Religion & Belief

Secular petitions highlight the sectarian issues in Scottish education

Posted: Thu, 13 Jun 2013 by Alistair McBay

The last few weeks have seen the topic of religious observance (RO) in schools hit the headlines in Scotland. Two petitions have been lodged, one at central government and one at local government level.

Secular Scotland, a group of Glasgow secularists, launched... Read More »

Tags: Scotland, Religious Observance, Education, Collective Worship