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Dawkins urges constitutional reform to remove church role - Comments

Alexandreina's Avatar Comment 1 by Alexandreina

Excellent. Now if we could just get something put into our US Constitution about separating Church and State...

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 19:48:10 UTC | #634930

RomeStu's Avatar Comment 2 by RomeStu

Wow .... that was really ..... strident! Good job, Richard.

Now about disestablishing the C of E

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 19:53:04 UTC | #634934

The Plc's Avatar Comment 3 by The Plc

Thanks for these comments Richard. The Ipso facto discrimination against non-Catholics and (non-Christians more generally) in our country from education and other public institutions is a)a scandal and b) totally unbefitting of our increasingly secular and pluralistic modern Irish society.

The arse is falling out of religion in Ireland (especially amongst young people) quicker than the religious were falling into the arses of Ireland (again, especially amongst young people). The Catholic Church in Ireland has even admitted itself that within a decade they will be dead and buried. That's quite the turnaround.

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 20:22:29 UTC | #634952

josephor's Avatar Comment 4 by josephor

All I can do is offer my sincere thanks to all who took part and brought this Convention to Dublin. In Ireland we need all the help we can get in our struggle to separate Church from state....Well done everyone.

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 20:23:43 UTC | #634954

Rattlesnake's Avatar Comment 5 by Rattlesnake

Fantastic. Just absolutely fantastic. Would that similar could happen elsewhere.

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 20:32:32 UTC | #634960

Stafford Gordon's Avatar Comment 6 by Stafford Gordon

Is this anti antidisestablishmentarianismistic?

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 20:38:01 UTC | #634964

HenkM's Avatar Comment 7 by HenkM

Comment 5 by Rattlesnake :

Fantastic. Just absolutely fantastic. Would that similar could happen elsewhere.

Hopefully like the protests in Arab countries. Hopefully like the breakdown of the communistic block. It s not that the ideas will be gone (see Russia), but that paralysing grip on everyday issues will be lessened, and will wither. I fear that USA will be one of the last (if at all) to see reason (not meant as pun, but it fits nicely). That country is making their Founders turning collectively in their graves. Still ... one can hope.

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 20:51:19 UTC | #634974

aquilacane's Avatar Comment 8 by aquilacane

Comment 2 by RomeStu

Wow .... that was really ..... strident! Good job, Richard.

Now about disestablishing the C of E

C of E starts with the head. I say off with it... off with your head on my money, off with your head in my schools and off with your head in my government. There are few things I look forward to, getting rid of Canada's Governor General and any Royal visage or influence are two of them.

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 20:51:24 UTC | #634975

rod-the-farmer's Avatar Comment 9 by rod-the-farmer

Re Comment #

The Catholic Church in Ireland has even admitted itself that within a decade they will be dead and buried

Reference please ?

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 21:40:00 UTC | #635007

The Plc's Avatar Comment 10 by The Plc

Comment 9 by rod-the-farmer :

Re Comment #

The Catholic Church in Ireland has even admitted itself that within a decade they will be dead and buried

Reference please ?

I've looked and the newspaper I originally read it in (Irish News) doesn't archive it's articles, but the Archbishop of Ireland Diarmuid Martin has been consistently saying stuff like this for the last year or so.

http://www.independent.ie/national-news/next-few-years-vital-for-church-says-martin-2660981.html http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/local-national/republic-of-ireland/diarmuid-martin-admits-failing-in-efforts-to-reform-catholic-church-15093352.html

From his Wikipedia article

At a talk on the future of Irish Catholicism on 22 February 2011 for the Cambridge Group for Irish Studies, Magdalene College, Cambridge Archbishop Martin said that "there are parishes in Dublin where the presence at Sunday Mass is some 5% of the Catholic population and, in some cases, even below 2%. On any particular Sunday about 18% of the Catholic population in the Archdiocese of Dublin attends Mass. That is considerably lower than in any other part of Ireland." He continued saying "the conformist Ireland of the Archbishop McQuaid era changed so rapidly and with few tears was read as an indication of a desire for change, but perhaps it was also an indication that the conformism was covering an emptiness and a faith built on a faulty structure to which people no longer really ascribed" and that "The Catholic Church in Ireland will inevitably become more a minority culture. The challenge is to ensure that it is not an irrelevant minority culture." In the context of lay pastoral workers he said "The narrow culture of clericalism has to be eliminated. It did not come out of nowhere and so we have to address its roots from the time of seminary training onwards". He said that of the Church that the "paradoxical thing is that the farther the Church goes in adapting to the culture of the times, the greater is the danger that it will no longer be able to confront the culture of the time", he concluded saying that "I am convinced that one of the principal ways in which the Church can reform itself and bring its message more incisively to society is through developing a renewed biblical apostolate".[47]

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 22:06:01 UTC | #635023

johnt16's Avatar Comment 11 by johnt16

Is it evil for priests to patrol around rooms and wards full of sick and dying, often elderly people, looking to promote your doctrine and superstitious rituals while pretending to deliver comfort to the seriously ill?

I think so... comments about the Catholic Church were spot on.

Mon, 06 Jun 2011 22:12:31 UTC | #635026

Munski's Avatar Comment 12 by Munski

Thank you for that action, Prof. Dawkins. Although there's enough nonsense in the UK to keep one busy, if at any time you wish to speak in Canada, and declare the same thing or criticize our Christian Prime Minister Harper for his meddling in the Middle East and wanting to create an offical 'Office of Religious Tolerance' even though human rights are already guarranteed in our charter, by all means feel free to.

Tue, 07 Jun 2011 05:21:56 UTC | #635154

k_docks's Avatar Comment 13 by k_docks

describing the Catholic Church as “an evil institution . . . by far the worst where the churches are concerned”.

Maybe Richard has been reading Bible prophecy. This was prophesied about thousands of years ago and he is only just noticing it now? If you study the Bible carefully you will notice that it has a lot to say about false religion, it's dangers and how that it will be rampant in the last days.

Tue, 07 Jun 2011 08:30:54 UTC | #635209

dubjim's Avatar Comment 14 by dubjim

Question for k docks (comment 13)

Considering the many false religions in the past 2 or 3 thousand years or so, how is it that the world has not ended? After all you say " it will be rampant in the last days".
You are right about one thing, the Bible does have a lot to say, unfortunately it is a lot of rubbish.

Tue, 07 Jun 2011 09:17:15 UTC | #635223

sandman67's Avatar Comment 15 by sandman67

Whilst I applaud Prof Ds actions I would suggest that we start at home. We are still hobbled with religious hangovers, primarily connected with the CoE.

First we should immediately remove the Lords Spiritual from the House of Lords, their seats to be re-assigned to secular representatives.

Second we should immediately put a freeze on any further expansion of faith based schools, and initiate a rapid program of secularisation of all state schools. Schools who choose to retain faith connections will not recieve any government funding.

Legislation should be passed removing any requirement for schools to actively promote any faith based activity such as prayers or religious assemblies. If schools retain the RE element of the education curricula that should be their own choice, and subject to a poll of parents whose kids attend.

Finally the Act of Settlement 1701 should be scrapped as it is prejudicial and runs contrary to the spirit of the HRA. 300 year old religiously prejudicial laws are unacceptable in a modern secular society.

Tue, 07 Jun 2011 11:46:39 UTC | #635281

locka's Avatar Comment 16 by locka

Ireland is a secular state in practice so I really wish they'd go that extra step and rid the constitution of any preferential treatment for one religion over another. And while they're at it, fix the horribly broken primary schools system which means one religion is forced onto children whether their parents wish it or not.

Tue, 07 Jun 2011 13:19:14 UTC | #635330

HenkM's Avatar Comment 17 by HenkM

Comment 1 by Alexandreina :

Excellent. Now if we could just get something put into our US Constitution about separating Church and State...

Isnt that there already?

Somewhere in the first 2 Amendments?

Did the (majority) of Founders (Adams, Jefferson, a.o.) not write the Constitution to just safeguard that separation?

(yes, I know that in practise that Constitution was and is violated. Mainly by republicans)

p.s. It may be childish of me, but I refuse to write names that I despise with a capital initial.

Tue, 07 Jun 2011 15:42:30 UTC | #635428

Steve Hanson's Avatar Comment 18 by Steve Hanson

@Comment 17 by HenkM

The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

The Second Amendment deals with the right to bare arms (a necessity of frontier living, for one, but also to ensure the people retain the power to over throw a corrupt government).

Tue, 07 Jun 2011 19:19:37 UTC | #635574

Alexandreina's Avatar Comment 19 by Alexandreina

Comment 17 by HenkM

Comment 1 by Alexandreina :

Excellent. Now if we could just get something put into our US Constitution about separating Church and State...

Isnt that there already?

Apparently I failed to note that the sarcasm meter was running.

Tue, 07 Jun 2011 20:13:57 UTC | #635602

SuedeStonn's Avatar Comment 20 by SuedeStonn

@Alexandria

LMAO, when talking about/dealing with 'religion' the meter never stops! This will be the only drawback to a theist-free world... no more free entertainment at the expense of the 'enlightened'. :P

Wed, 08 Jun 2011 03:47:48 UTC | #635761

diamondsteady's Avatar Comment 21 by diamondsteady

There is a more practical reason why the Church of England should be disestablished. Despite being an evangelical atheist, I was recently invited by some game neighbours to a debating society meeting at their church, where General Lord Dannatt was speaking on “Morality and Soldiering.” He gave an overtly soldierly presentation on the nature and delivery of military power as an arm of the state, which included his view that military power had a moral obligation attached to it. I guess this is what is generally referred to as “winning hearts and minds.” He then began talking about what he saw as the importance of the spiritual element of morality and during questions, a military chaplain asked whether Dannatt felt that the importance of the spiritual element of morality should be emphasized and made explicit, strongly implying that morality was the exclusive preserve of Christians. At this point, I could barely remain seated and was desperate to ask some questions, but feared that, as a lone atheist in the presence of 400 Christians, I would be smote from on high, so I chose not to. Perhaps they are right, and my atheism stems from moral cowardice! Question 1 would have been “How would he reconcile the commandment “Thou shalt not kill” with being a soldier?” However, a far more interesting question would relate to our current “War on Terror.” "In this war, should we be seen to deliver an explicitly spiritually-based military power, as the arm of a state with an established church, isn’t there a danger that it would be interpreted as a “War on Islam,” something I understood we were desperately anxious to avoid? "Wouldn’t this be somewhat akin to the fact that some American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan were bearing arms with Biblical quotations engraved on them?" What do you all think?

Thu, 09 Jun 2011 12:52:26 UTC | #636368

diamondsteady's Avatar Comment 22 by diamondsteady

PS I could equally well have said: • During World War I, German soldiers advancing through Belgium in 1918 wore belts engraved “Gott mit uns” (God with us) whilst shooting and bayoneting civilians, including women children and priests. • Soldiers on both sides of both World Wars customarily knelt before battles to pray for victory to the very same god! • In 1933, the Nazi Congress of German Christians said that all churches should catechize that: “God has created me German; Germanism is a gift of God. God wills that I fight for Germany. War service in no way injures the Christian conscience, but is obedience to God.”

Thu, 09 Jun 2011 13:02:46 UTC | #636373

Troll's Avatar Comment 23 by Troll

Great post!

Fri, 10 Jun 2011 20:36:39 UTC | #636902

Anonymous's Avatar Comment 24 by Anonymous

Comment Removed by Moderator

Wed, 05 Oct 2011 07:25:39 UTC | #878028

mmurray's Avatar Comment 25 by mmurray

Comment 24 by motorsports :

The terms and conditions you signed up to are clear. Don't just quote bits of your "holy book" at us.

Michael

Wed, 05 Oct 2011 07:44:24 UTC | #878032

Anonymous's Avatar Comment 26 by Anonymous

Comment Removed by Moderator

Wed, 05 Oct 2011 09:06:18 UTC | #878051