Religious Freedom

An Open Response to the Authors of the Mannan Family ISIS Statement

Michael Mumisa | Posted 10.07.2015 | UK
Michael Mumisa

To the authors of the statement, On 3 July, 2015, you released a statement confirming that you had joined the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) which yo...

Four Great Politics Books You've Probably Never Heard Of

Tom Butler Bowdon | Posted 10.07.2015 | UK Politics
Tom Butler Bowdon

Perhaps you've enjoyed George Orwell's Animal Farm or Nelson Mandela's Long Walk To Freedom. Maybe you've even tackled Plato's The Republic or Thoreau's Civil Disobedience. Here are some other hugely important, but lesser known, political classics.

Religion: From Bridges to Checkpoints?

Dr Harry Hagopian | Posted 15.06.2015 | UK
Dr Harry Hagopian

Over the past couple of weeks, a small number of events made me realise that religion - some call it religiosity too - is playing once more an active ...

Britain's Got Religion: Major Party Manifestos all Voice Support for Religious Freedom

Judd Birdsall | Posted 05.05.2015 | UK Politics
Judd Birdsall

The convergence of the UK party manifestos on religious freedom is a positive development for sure. But to translate this domestic political pressure into effective foreign policy, the government should fold religious freedom promotion into a broader strategy of understanding and engaging religion in international affairs.

Here's EXACTLY Why Allen B West Is So Wrong

Ed O'Meara | Posted 02.06.2015 | UK Comedy
Ed O'Meara

Because West doesn't believe that homosexuality is innate he can't see that it's a lot like race. Even so, he believes that cake shop owners are well within their rights to feel religiously persecuted! Religiously persecuted? Why? Do they have to live in icing ghettos or wear little cakes on their jackets to show they own cake shops?

If Debate Is Silenced We Risk More Violence in the Name of Religion

Thomas Hughes | Posted 23.05.2015 | UK
Thomas Hughes

States must do more than simply say the right things at the UN; agreeing to Resolution 16/18 is one thing, but the test will be whether it is followed up with action to protect freedom of expression and freedom of religion or belief for all people.

Reconciliation Beyond the Religious Closet

Ian Linden | Posted 17.05.2015 | UK
Ian Linden

Suddenly, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a powerfully built white man barreling up the side aisle. I tensed. The bodyguard spotted him too but didn't flicker.

If John McClane Became a Priest

Adam Hamdy | Posted 10.05.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Adam Hamdy

Running a marathon in one of the world's hot spots would seem risky to most people, but Doug has a history of undertaking endeavours that would make other people blench.

Is It Hobson's Choice Between Religious Beliefs and Free Speech?

Dr Harry Hagopian | Posted 27.03.2015 | UK
Dr Harry Hagopian

Surely, we do not have to view them as a Hobson's choice? What we should focus on instead is the harder - and much harsher - question of whether we as followers of a religion or as advocates of free speech can coexist too?

Do We Have a Right Not to Be Offended in Our Religious Beliefs?

Varun Bhanot | Posted 14.03.2015 | UK
Varun Bhanot

The attacks on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo have once again thrust open the freedom of expression versus freedom of religion debate in our society. Where does one freedom end and the other begin? And perhaps more crucially, should this latest attack force us to reconsider our limits?

Homosexuality and Religion: Can a Mutual Respect Ever be Established?

Anna Tippett | Posted 12.01.2015 | UK
Anna Tippett

A large proportion of the homophobia that exists in society continues to stem from religious belief. Within this, the active condemnation of homosexuality is often justified as an expression of faith; a religious right where an individual is free to preach - what they perceive to be - the word of God.

Andrew Brown: Hating Islam Means Hating Muslims

John Sargeant | Posted 06.01.2015 | UK Politics
John Sargeant

To hate a religion according to Andrew Brown is to hate religious believers. To the point you want to make them victims. My hatred of religion for endorsing slavery makes me apparently hate modern religious believers, which is equivalent to rascism.

Religion, Globalisation and Modernity

Ian Linden | Posted 28.12.2014 | UK
Ian Linden

Modernity equates to a secular view of the world. Religion will slowly wither away. Globalisation is a new force in the world, spreading modernity, finally spelling religion's death-knoll. Well, no. A popular view but popular views are sometimes wrong. The obituary of God has been written many times.

ISIS and Clerical Fascism

John Sargeant | Posted 15.11.2014 | UK Politics
John Sargeant

The need to fight fascism and prevent genocide are as close to self evident truths as humanity might wish to invent. When both present themselves in the form of ISIS the question is how, rather than why, they must be destroyed.

The Damnation of Pakistan's Second Amendment

John Sargeant | Posted 04.11.2014 | UK Politics
John Sargeant

Four million people are discriminated against in a land of 180 million. The Second Amendment of the constitution is devoted to enshrining the legal basis to do so. The second; a religious ruling as constitutional law...

Time to End Compulsory Worship In Schools

Stephen Evans | Posted 09.09.2014 | UK
Stephen Evans

Removing the collective worship requirement is not a call to jettison all trace of religion from schools... Legally imposing a daily act of worship, in which pupils by law are required to "take part", goes beyond the legitimate function of the state and violates the human right of freedom of belief for children and young people.

Going Undercover: Human Rights and the Niqab

Gabriel Webber | Posted 31.08.2014 | UK
Gabriel Webber

This week saw one of those fleeting moments when Daily Mail readers will have felt a great big load of love for the European Court of Human Rights...

Indonesia Is at a Crossroads - Its Future as a Pluralistic Democracy Hangs in the Balance

Benedict Rogers | Posted 27.08.2014 | UK
Benedict Rogers

It is not for me, as a foreigner, to tell Indonesians how to vote on 9 July. The choice of President is one for the people of Indonesia to make. But, if I were an Indonesian, it's clear where my sympathies would lie...

Why God Matters and On Being an Orphan

Samantha van Dalen | Posted 16.06.2014 | UK Lifestyle
Samantha van Dalen

God, that nebulous being without a face, has confused mankind forever. Either you are with him or against him. I recently took confession and the priest, locked behind a screen, ordered me to say to God that I was sorry for offending him.

Critiquing Islam or Islamophobia?

Liam Deacon | Posted 16.05.2014 | UK Universities & Education
Liam Deacon

For nine years in a row a controversial resolution on, "Combating Defamation of Religions," described by some as an, "international blasphemy law," has been consistently losing support in the United Nations General Assembly.

Religious Freedom Needs Free Speech

John Sargeant | Posted 28.03.2014 | UK
John Sargeant

A t-shirt is not usually newsworthy. When it depicts The Prophet Mohammed saying "How ya doing?" from the Jesus and Mo cartoon it has legs. When the story has intrigue, personal rivalry, politics and religion thrown in it runs and runs.

My 14 Priorities for 2014

Benedict Rogers | Posted 20.02.2014 | UK
Benedict Rogers

Admittedly, my direct involvement is in Asia and so I draw heavily on my experiences there. But the principles hold, wherever they arise - for the values in contention are universal.

Muslim Women Don't Care If You Feel Uncomfortable

Shaheen Sattar | Posted 29.11.2013 | UK Universities & Education
Shaheen Sattar

Regardless of whether you think niqab should be banned in society wholeheartedly, or removed from public spheres because it makes you feel uncomfortable and in a compromised condition, banning the niqab for the small minority of women, challenges the very foundations of female autonomy in large.

There Is No Compulsion in Islam to Wear the Niqab

Shamim Chowdhury | Posted 16.11.2013 | UK Politics
Shamim Chowdhury

If the accusation is that the banning of the niqab goes against religious freedom, the foremost question must be whether the niqab itself has any kind of theological basis. Until now there has been no compelling evidence to suggest that it has, and this is what appears to have got lost in the debate.

The Spread of Religious Freedom Advocacy, and How to Improve It

David Griffiths | Posted 06.11.2013 | UK
David Griffiths

There is much to praise about fresh commitments around the world to promoting FORB. I hope we will now see growing sophistication in how it is done - and if so, the Special Rapporteur comes recommended as an excellent resource.