We Must Teach All Our Religions-Not Just One

Daily Mail (London), February 28, 1996 | Go to article overview

We Must Teach All Our Religions-Not Just One


HOW FAR should one tolerate the intolerant? The decision by Education Secretary Gillian Shepherd not to oppose Birmingham Council's accession to demands by Moslem leaders for seperate religious education, has excited the often-latent Christianity in much of the population. Is it a betrayal of everything British or a humanitarian piece of good community relations? Here is a selection of your opinions . . .

WORKING in the exploration of oil for 25 years has taken me all over the world, and I have found the least religious tolerance in countries where the predominant belief is Islam.

I try to present my two children with a balanced view of life and wouldn't want them to grow up as bigots. But should I tell them of instances where women are murdered just because the man of the house is tired of them?

Many times I have observed men using Islam as an excuse for doing as little as possible, while women and foreigners do all the work. Slavery is still rife along the Arabian Gulf.

I've worked in countries where Christianity is banned, and yet in Britain these people have more rights than the British. Do Moslem women in this country have any say in their lives or are they goods and chattels, as in the vast majority of Islamic countries? In demanding separate Moslem education, are Moslem men merely worried in case exposure to other cultures might erode their stranglehold on power in their families?

A. SMITH,

Swindon, Wilts.

RESPECT MORALS

CONGRATULATIONS on speaking up for our nation's faith (Comment), voicing concerns which the Government and Church leaders fail to address. Clearly, while the secular and multi-religious aspects of our society are relatively recent phenomena, Britain's Christianity is an integral and historic part of our nationhood.

Our laws and morals, shaped over the centuries by our ancestors, are hewn from a Christian heritage that deserves the respect and appreciation from all of society. Any undermining of this Christian heritage, especially from the secular and politically correct, must have profound consequences for us all.

SELWYN P. HODSON PRESSINGER,

London, SW1.

WHY the outcry over separate religious education classes in schools of mixed denominations? In the late Thirties and early Forties, I attended a direct grant grammar school in East London where about half the pupils were Jewish.

We split once a week for separate RE instruction and finished school early on Fridays to facilitate their Sabbath.

Why is something which was perfectly acceptable then, making headlines now? Have we become a less tolerent nation?

Mrs J.V. FRATER,

Elstead, Surrey.

FOR Princess Diana to be seen traipsing about in Moslem dress, while this aggressive militant religious sect is attempting to dominate British culture and the world, is tantamount to political provocation. She is a silly, meddlesome airhead who is undermining the monarchy. …

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