Intrusive Freedom

This is the fool who made a complete ape of himself last March by telling the nation that bishops have no obligation to report crimes of child-rape to the civil authorities.  Maurice Dooley is a former professor of canon law, which tells you all you need to know about canon law — shit they made up.  Dooley thinks canon law is superior to the law of the land, and sees no problem with the cover-up of the Catholic hierarchy, including Se├ín Brady, swearing raped children to secrecy – Bock The Robber, 2010

The experience of those children abused by Jewish clergy once again underscores how many religious people make little attempt to comprehend why they should be compelled to refrain from inflicting their beliefs on other people. They expect to work as marriage registrars but decide who they will approve; as chemists but determine who is worthy of treatment; as hoteliers yet deny services to those whose sexuality is offensive to their own religion.

In the US military inflicting religious belief on others is so extensive that:

Clubbish Bible-believing cadets bullied Catholics, Muslims, Jews, nontheists and even mainline Protestants (who, after all, weren’t real Christians to them). Evangelical chaplains brazenly told supporters they were missionaries on the public dime and the armed services was their mission field. Righteous officers pulled rank and pressured subordinates to participate in Bible studies and prayer meetings –and covered up abuses.

In Ireland where citizens are no strangers to the religious thinking they have rights over the rest of us, the Catholics insist on some sort of special status for canon law. Yet as Michael McDowell reminded Cardinal Connell, canon law has no more status in society than the rules of a golf club.  Two years ago Monsignor Maurice Dooley, a former professor of Canon Law, insisted that this particular private member’s law was superior to civil law and that bishops were under no obligation to report child abusers to the civil law: which, as has been wittily pointed out elsewhere, sort of means you can attack a penguin in Dublin Zoo but not be made accountable for it because you happen to be a bishop. As the blogger Bock The Robber,summed it up ‘when a golfer abuses children, I don’t want to hear some club manager telling me that he’s protected by the rules of golf.’

The issue the religious never seem to address is why they feel the need to practice their religion on other people, pleading victimhood when their designs are thwarted.  When the human rights of others are asserted against religion we find the religious often complaining that they are inhibited from practicing their opinion by new fangled laws or uppity minorities.  If we refuse to accept their insistence on freedom to intrude they get all annoyed, claim their religion is being marginalised, frequently get indignant and on occasion get violent. It is not religious freedom they seek but intrusive freedom. A ‘this is my golf club and I can batter you over the head with it if I so choose’ type of thing. ‘How can your human rights stand in the way of my religion?’

The religious seem to argue that others have no rights against religious invasiveness. We are already aware of the experience of a gay couple seeking to share a hotel room but being denied because to do so would have offended the religious opinion of the hoteliers even though the gay couple did not share that opinion themselves. People have the right to protection against such religious intrusion

If people want to practice their religion they should be free to do so on the condition that they do not use others as target practice: members of an archery club can’t wave the club rules and insist on forcing others to stand holding the target; cricketers can’t drag people off the streets and force them to play at silly point and take a hard ball in the gob for their efforts and then be told that the cricket rule book allows cricket clubs to do that sort of thing.

Religion is just an opinion that people should be free to hold or reject. There is no reason whatsoever for one individual to hold another’s opinion unless they freely decide to do so. Valerie Tarico asks ‘so why don’t they give it up? They can’t. Their beliefs require that they push as hard as they can to implement their understanding of God’s will.

But it more than this. It is about exercising power over others and demanding obedience from them. Adam Lee sums it up well:

Religion is very much a holdover from the dark ages of the past, and the world's holy books still enshrine the ancient demands for us to bow down and obey the (conveniently unseen and absent) gods, and more importantly, the human beings who claim the right to act as their representatives. It's no surprise, then, that the most fervent advocates of religion in the modern world are also the most deeply inculcated with this mindset of command and obedience.

Smoke whatever god brand they wish but they are not going to blow it on me.


  1. And he wants to tell us what does not correspond to reality. German chancer

  2. This must have been an embarrassing moment. See how quickly they react when it is a gay related issue. Were it involving abuse of minors it would have taken years before something was done or at all

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