Sunday, August 13, 2006

A letter appeared in this week Scotland on Sunday which annoyed me somewhat so I sent off a letter to the editor.


The letter from the Rev Dr Anderson seems to lay much blame for the ills of sectarianism at the doors of the Catholic community of Scotland and the fact that it was an “influx of Roman Catholic Irish [which] destabilised the consensual if not homogenous [Scottish] society”. Surely this could also be turned around to say it was the “influx of Protestant Scots [which] destabilised the consensual if not homogenous [Irish] society” in the 16th and 17th centuries. Touché.

His claim that the Catholics have “kept themselves to themselves” for the bulk of the 20th Century denies an almost total integration into society at large by the Irish immigrants’ descendants along with a massive decline in the religious observance of both sects of Christianity in Scotland since the war. It is true that many Catholics have their own education and community places but that is simply the nature of organised religion.

He seems to harbour a mistrust (at the very least) of “politically correct” secularism. Whilst being unsure what the PC aspect of being secular is, the fact that the Rev Dr Robertson and others of the Christian religion on all sides are stuck in this rut, mud-slinging over issues that the majority of Scots could not care less about shows that religion has no place in 21st century Scotland except in a historical perspective.

The sooner we remove references to age-old superstitious nonsense and build a country where we have respect for anyone regardless of race or sexuality and tolerance of all beliefs (as long as this belief does not impinge on the rights of others) and the sooner we remove all religious aspects from state-subsidised establishments the sooner we can leave this illogical and irrational anachronism behind and build a country all Scots can be proud of.

This continual mud slinging between Catholics and Protestants in this country really pisses me off. At best they are an annoyance but at worst their constant sniping brings shame on our little country. They are like two brothers of the same family who just keep fighting even in public. It causes embarassment and damage to our standing as a nation and the sooner they just shut up or bugger off the better.

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