"We respect the Prime Minister’s right to his religious beliefs and the fact that they affect his own life as a politician. However, we wish to object to his repeated mischaracterising of our country as a ‘Christian country’ and the negative consequences for our politics and society that this view engenders.
Apart from in the narrow constitutional sense that we continue to
have an established church, we are not a ‘Christian country’. Repeated
surveys, polls, and studies show most of us as individuals are not
Christian in our beliefs or our religious identities and at a social
level, Britain has been shaped for the better by many pre-Christian,
non-Christian, and post-Christian forces. We are a plural society with
citizens with a range of perspectives and a largely non-religious
society. To constantly claim otherwise fosters alienation and division
in our society.
Although it is right to recognise the contribution made by many
Christians to social action, it is wrong to try to exceptionalise their
contribution when it is equalled by British people of different beliefs.
It needlessly fuels enervating sectarian debates that are by and large
absent from the lives of most British people, who – as polls show – do
not want religions or religious identities to be actively prioritised by
their elected government."
The British Humanist Association responds to David Cameron's recent claim that Britain is a "Christian country" with an open letter endorsed by more than fifty eminent signatories and published in the Torygraph.
(Thanks to Zoe for the link.)