Monday, 22 April 2013

Religion as a 'thought crime'?

Extracts from the Telegraph 'Christians launch landmark human rights case'

"Campaigners will submit papers to the European Court of Human Rights in a final attempt to overturn rulings they say have restricted religious freedom for Christians and effectively persecuted those wanting to publicly practise their religion...

...Papers in the three cases are to be submitted this week that will claim British courts are applying double standards towards Christians for “political” reasons, and that human rights rules have been used to effectively outlaw beliefs which have been held for millennia while affording special recognition to minority opinions on anything from fox hunting to climate change.

According to Paul Diamond, the religious rights barrister, who is representing Mr McFarlane and Mrs Chaplin, Mr McFarlane was "dismissed for his 'thoughts’ and 'religious beliefs’ on a wholly theoretical basis.”

“The case directly raises the question of conscience and 'thought crime’,” the papers say. 

Andrea Williams, director of the Christian Legal Centre, which is supporting Mr McFarlane and Mrs Chaplin, said: “We are throwing down the gauntlet to David Cameron to decide once and for all whether he is in favour of religious freedom or not.“These are cases where the only victims were the Christians trying to live out their faith in the workplace but who were driven out for doing so. As the pleadings in Gary McFarlane’s case make clear, Christians are now being punished for 'thought crimes’.”