Wednesday, December 06, 2006 

Joy to the world.

Man your battlestations. The Christian backlash is coming:

CHANNEL 4 was blasted last night after revealing its Christmas Day message will be delivered by a British Muslim woman in a full veil.

She has been identified only as Khadija, a Zimbabwe-born lecturer in Islamic studies. It is understood she will speak about the growing influence of different faiths in Britain — and possibly about her views on the veil.

A C4 spokesman said: “This year has been dominated by issues of race and religious identity. We thought it was appropriate.” He added Khadija will wish viewers a Merry Christmas.

But the Christian Institute said: “This is just what you expect from Channel 4, which has shown contempt for Christianity and Christian values.”

For a start, the Queen's Christmas message rarely has anything to do with Christmas itself. It's more an opportunity for our blessed monarch to reminisce about the year in her interminable monotonous voice. It's a bit like the Great Escape; you know it's there, and if you're bored enough you might watch it. Caring about it is a lot harder.

To the Christian Institute website then, where it becomes apparent that they're less concerned about promoting Christianity, which is their supposed mission, and more devoted to maintaining the right to be bigoted, as a visit to their publications on what they call "homosexual rights" reveals:

Statement on Gay Marriage

Why gay and straight relationships should not be equal in the eyes of the law.

The Case for Keeping Section 28
January 2000

Looking specifically at Scotland, this report shows why the Scottish Executive should keep the law that bans local authorities from promoting homosexuality

Gay Pressure on the Young
January 1999

Looks at sexual pressures on young people in the light of plans to reduce the homosexual age of consent from 18 to 16.

Is the "gay pressure" on the young the same pressure which I witnessed at school where any potential sign of homosexuality was treated as something to be made fun of and hated? The same pressure which teachers are increasingly concerned about, with homophobic bullying being endemic within schools? It couldn't be.

Here's another newsflash to the Christian Institute. The word "alternative" ought to give you a clue to what the basis of the programme is built around. Were they objecting when that well-known Christian Sharon Obsourne gave the message? How about Ali G? Somehow I doubt it.

Channel 4 are doubtless attempting to be controversial, as they have been since the beginning, and getting a woman who wears a niqab to do their message when they could have got someone more notable and better informed to do the same thing is worthy of criticism. This though ignores what the message of Christmas is meant to be about. The day is supposedly about hope, about being optimistic for the future. In a year in which certain people have tried their hardest to drill up hate against Muslims, what could be more appropriate than a Muslim woman talking about different faiths on the day which most families come together, of faith or of not?

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