Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Religious Hatred Bill

Attended a meeting in this room at the left at which Paul Goggins spoke. He is the MP in charge of shepherding this piece of legislation through the Houses of Parliament and working for it's acceptance. My notes of his talk are as follows :

+ linked to anti-terror legislation proposed in 2001 then withdrawn

+ racial hatred legislation in force for 20 years BUT no protection for "inciting hatred because of belief or lack of belief"

+ Jews, Sikhs etc are protected as a race but Muslims not protected as a faith

+ issues surrounding this bill can be divided into
(i) legal arguments &
(ii) every day concerns

+i)a)bill will affect those who engage in speech and behaviour which "are likely to stir up hatred in 3d parties" & "they intended to do so" [yet proving intentions is difficult almost impossible]

+i)b) what is "hate" ? what is "religion" ? the bill does not define these.

+ii) every day issues : a) a new blasphemy law ? no.
b) religion is different from race yet there are still "issues of identity"
c) "this bill protects the right to say harsh things about BELIEF but not about BELIEVERS"
d) frivolous complaints : this bill has a different and higher threshhold fom the Australian legislation

+ the Attorney General must approve all prosecutions

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Jesus by another name ?

Just finished reading "Desperately Seeking Paradise" by Ziauddin Sardar.

The review by Ralph Blumenau captures the essence and significance of this book by a British Muslim journalist better than any other review i have read.

Sardar mentions a certain Parvez Manzoor who comes across as a kind of intellectual mentor to Sardar's group of would be Islamist reformers calling themselves "Ijmalis".

Manzoor's agenda? Reconciling Transcendence and Existence !

Sooooo interestingly while blog surfing i came across this comment :

Jesus gets the glory. Jesus, not "Transcendence," is the name above every name.Someday every tongue will confess, "Jesus, Christ, Lord" to the Father's glory.

For context click here.

Monday, November 21, 2005

WPC and PC

Subsequent to the shooting of two women policemen one of whom has since died, former top UK policeman Mr. John Stevens apparently has written to (of all papers) the "News of the Word". He says :

"I genuinely never thought I'd say this, but I am now convinced that the monster who executed this young woman in cold blood should, in turn, be killed as punishment for his crime,"

The cynic in me thinks maybe Mr.Stevens's comments are coming in aid of Ian Blair (and other interested parties) in the comingled debates over "shoot to kill" and whether the police forces are being politically manipulated by the Labour government or not.

Certainly this tragic event is begging for consideration of other more pertinent issues such as whether British police should be armed as a matter of course. These policewomen apparently were not.

But even more importantly, a tragic event such as this should (but most certainly will not) bring up the more obviously politically un-correct question of whether women should be placed in harm's way.

For a thoughtful essay regarding women in the military see here.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Quote of the Day

"The Protestant age is coming to an end. That means that the Reformed faith and Presbyterianism are also coming to an end. The paradigm is exhausted, and the world in which it was worked out no longer exists. We must take all the great gains of the Calvinistic heritage and apply them with an open Bible to the new world in which we are now living. We must be aware that there is far more in the Bible than the Reformation dealt with, and that many of our problems today are addressed by those hitherto unnoticed or undeveloped aspects of the Bible. Those who want to bang the drum for a 450-year old tradition are dooming themselves to irrelevance. Our only concern is to avoid being beat up by them as they thrash about in their death-throes."
James Jordan, "The Closing of the Calvinistic Mind"

Monday, November 14, 2005

Transport for London Questionnaire

Have a look at the sexuality section of this questionnaire! It is amazing!!!(If a question box about secure/nonsecure items comes up, click 'OK'.)

Friday, November 11, 2005

Post-Christian Chickens Coming Home to Roost in France

Blaming Islamists for these events must be nothing more than rabble rousing, racism, dumb ignorance or a combination of all three as Muslims make up around 10% of the population of France and less in the other major European countries.

To write stories intimating that fewer than 10% of any country's population (and a dispossessed minority at that) can force/impose anything not wanted by 90% of the population is absurd. Want a more plausible causal link for the rioting in France ? C'est l'economie - stupide!

I myself am not a Muslim. In fact, I am a convert to the Lord Jesus Christ and the Christian faith. I do come from a nominally Muslim background; but, i do not believe in harassing Muslim minorities any more than i believe Christians should be harassed in Islamic countries.

The Christian "majorities" of the Western countries have been called "post-Christian" since after World War 1. This means they have discarded their rich Christian faith, heritage, and patrimony as something worthless.

The plan must be : "get your own [spiritual] house in order":

6 But the righteousness based on faith speaks as follows: "DO NOT SAY IN YOUR HEART, 'WHO WILL ASCEND INTO HEAVEN?' (that is, to bring Christ down),

7 or 'WHO WILL DESCEND INTO THE ABYSS?' (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead)."

8 But what does it say? "THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, IN YOUR MOUTH AND IN YOUR HEART"--that is, the word of faith which we are preaching,

9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;

10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.


12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him;


(Romans 10:6-13 NASB)

The agenda for the West (and it's pundits) should be of getting your own house in order, not picking on the the poor, the unfortunate and the helpless. Nature,as well as the soul, abhors a vacuum.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

What was God Thinking ?

It's time to leave the murky world of Middle Eastern politics for an exploration of the wide blue (literally!) vistas of science in this TIME essay by Eric Cornell

As a Christian, a creationist and a person greatly interested in science, i was pleasantly surprised by this scientist's enlightened essay. He is unique among scientists generally since he refrains from making an aggressive frontal assault on I.D. He does allow I.D. a place on the terrain of human enquiry.

He is also being quite even-handed in making a call to opponents of I.D. to exercise a certain restraint.

The real problem, i don't think is one of I.D. competing and crowding out real science. This is not openly stated but perhaps is the motivation for this essay . Yet i would say that particular "crowding out" feat has already successfully been achieved by Darwinism.

If I.D. does manages to survive all the witchunts it seems to generate elsewhere we may indeed see, as William Dembski has succinctly put it in his essay "Reinstating Design Within Science", a widened and not a narrowed field of fruitful enquiry :

"Faced with a discredited Aristotelian science, a marvelously successful
modern science, and an entrenched opposition within the scientific
community against design, why should anyone want to reintroduce design into
science? The short answer is that chance and necessity have proven too thin
an explanatory soup on which to nourish a robust science. In fact, by
dogmatically excluding design from science, scientists are themselves
stifling scientific inquiry."

Let's all stay tuned with open minds.