Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Christian Mail v Islam round-up

A Catholic woman has resigned from her job at Gloucester Royal Hospital after being told she can not wear her crucifix necklace because of a strict uniform policy banning all necklaces.

The Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Trust said:

"We were disappointed that Helen took this decision and had offered to meet her again to discuss her concerns. The Trust does have a uniform policy which prohibits the wearing of necklaces and chains for the safety of both patients and staff. Similar policies are in place in hospitals across the country and are vital in the fight against infections.

“We would like to make it clear that Helen had not been the subject of disciplinary action. As a Trust we are supportive of our employees’ religious beliefs and indeed the vast majority of staff feel able to work within the policies of the organisation without compromising these important beliefs".
The Mail says: Devout Catholic nurse resigns over hospital crucifix ban.

One sounds reasonable and eminently sensible. The other sounds like hysteria-stoking, look-what's-happening-to 'us' non-Muslims nonsense, the latest in a long-line of such stories.

And it comes just a day after the Mail reported - with no small relish - remarks by Don Maclean that the BBC hearts Islam and hates Christianity. This was great for the paper, as it allowed it to both bash the BBC and push its 'Christians under attack from Muslims' agenda.

Maclean claimed that the BBC only covered Christian issues when it was about gay clergy and paedophile priests. When an inquiry finds 'endemic' child abuse at Catholic institutions or there's the possibility of a split in the Church of Scotland over the appointment of a gay clergyman, apparently, it's not to be mentioned.

He echoes Mail columnist Stephen Glover in making an attack on Aaqil Ahmed, the newly appointed head of religious programming. But like him, his criticism makes no sense, bemoaning the state of religious programming on the BBC, yet saying Ahmed's predecessor, Michael Wakelin, was a 'very devout Christian' and the 'man for the job'.

How can he be the 'man for the job' if, as Maclean claims, religious programmes have been so rubbish and the BBC has been 'keen on programmes that attack the Christian church...They seem to take the negative angle every time'. This is a total contradiction, and the same one that Glover seemed to have no problem spewing out.

Maclean also states the BBC is 'keen on Islam...Programmes on Islam are always supportive', without giving a single example of this - as he doesn't with all these programmes 'attacking' Christianity. As Richard Bartholomew states, there is still plenty of Christian programmes on the BBC. And Maclean's statement that they 'wanted rid of Wakelin' is rather disproved given Wakelin led the Daily Service this morning (and anyone who has had their TMS commentary interrupted by the Daily Service will know all too well there is a 15 minute Christian worship every single morning).

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