Leave it

There ‘s a cool breeze blowing throughout my house as I sit at my computer near to the front window. Something I know that would be very welcome to a lot of people who are stuck in offices with windows that open less than a cm due to health and safety rules. The irony is that it’s not okay to fall out of the window but practically a given that you should slowly cook confined in the space behind them.

What we desire, want and permissible are not usually things that we think about when we are content in life. To some it is money. To others, it could be the happiness in seeing your children and grandchildren grow up safely in a world of worry and hazards that are all too familiar once you look at the news each day.

I have had a privileged life in the fact that I have been able to get a decent education and afford to live in my own home. Now that both my parents have gone I feel I should be sensible and grown up in making life choices. After some thought and careful consideration, it is time to move on.

This decision I made was twenty years ago and not today or yesterday. I made it through hindsight and experiences I had in the years before. I gave up religion for good. I wasn’t a backslider anymore. Someone that may go back to church after a few weeks of absenteeism. I hadn’t had the spiritual flu or suffered a minor problem with my faith. It wasn’t there at all.

Each day I am reminded that the decision was the right one. Reading the updates about how a bakery in Northern Ireland has appealed a decision handed down by the courts in the fact that they discriminated against someone on the basis of their sexuality makes me realise I am better away from such organisations. I want nothing of them anymore. I have met my closest friends through church youth groups and I have some fantastic friends who would call themselves Christians. But your religion ends where my non-belief begins.

I have no problem with teaching religion. I did it for years in crappy school. But I taught it knowing that I would be talking about someone else’s religion someone else’s belief. If only there was more teaching of decent religious education would we have a more tolerant society? Less gullible in believing that if a handful of crazed idiots were to represent an entire religion then it would seem that everyone in that religion held the same views. I know and have met many Muslims who don’t think that ISIS is right just in the same way that the Christians in Northern Ireland don’t hold the same views as my Christian friends. I can distinguish between the two.

The faith that once I held has died. This means it cannot be revived by any means. I believe that once something is dead it’s dead. No amount of prayer, drugs or electronic stimulation will it allow it to live again. The story of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein to me is a story. Others might choose to believe it as a literal story. Others will see it as work of fiction.

I respect others and their faith. I have no problem in the talking about Islam or Taoism. I don’t see any problem in talking about it. I wouldn’t mind writing about or making a living discussing them it doesn’t break any rules. Even when I did have a faith I know that talking about others beliefs didn’t make a bad person.

Thank goodness I have left it behind. The petty arguments the church is having over two people of the same sex getting married is ridiculous. I do like talking and discussing religious and non-religious belief I have always been fascinated with belief systems. But to me they are stories. We will see more and more of these cases that I am sure. Where once the Church of England was a great moral bastion above reproach we will see more fundamentalist groups appear fighting their cause. The Church of England will become nothing more than a meeting group for the lonely. Something to wheel people into once a week and then wheel out again.

Freedom

In this country we can say what we like about the government. According to some the government monitors emails and certain political parties. This is is true to a certain extent but they are not stifled as they are in other countries. I can complain about the way in which the country is run and those who are in power and this is a basis for democracy.

There are certain loonies and idiots who will say that Britain is a police state. It isn’t. Look on youtube at those cases where people say they have evidence of a police state. Normally it’s a case where someone has done something wrong they have a problem with authority and the police. They then somehow become criminal experts quoting verbatim laws that have been looked up on the internet or passed on through dodgy sites that complain of police brutality.

I have seen cases where the public have constantly harangued police officers usually on there own quoting the law and trying to get a physical response from the officers involved. If you click on the last sentence it is an example of this where the police are asking someone who is sleeping outside the houses of parliament to move. He edits out the bit where he refuses to give the police officer his name..

That isn’t an example of a police state it’s showing you to be an argumentative prick.

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I know there are genuine cases where officers have acted inappropriately and in a criminal manner but the vast majority of people work for the good of the country and want to see law and order across the land. This doesn’t equate to a police state. I would invite the complainers to move to somewhere like Burma, North Korea or Libya. Let’s see how far they get when they complain about how their country is run.

Terrorists want to impose their ridiculous view of life. It is a warped version of Islam. It isn’t what the majority of over one billion Muslims adhere to. The views of right wing parties does no good to harmonise people. It divides and that’s what the terrorist want. I believe in democracy and freedom of speech as I see that this is a priviledge and also our right as human being to condemn violence.

I stand with the people of Brussels and the people of Paris in solidarity. The terrorists will never win. Using their violence to promote their cause this way won’t bring a country or countries to it’s knees. My thoughts are those families to have been caught in these bombings. Not with the people who brought untold misery to thousands.

Round up on politics

I was trying to reflect on the past few months. Trying to think what it will be like in 6 months time. I have a 5 year plan and maybe a 10 year one. Then my life and my brain kept thinking about the news and the appalling dreadful toss pot Donald Trump. I know that we have a few in our political sphere in the UK. I have been blocked by a certain George Galloway on Twitter. I cannot remember trolling him or telling him directly how much I hated him and his politics but he must have got wind of it and decided that he was going to blot out the comments.

That brings me quite horribly back to Trump. His very name is a euphemism for a fart. I hate the idea that he like others is pandering to the lower common denominator and leeching off the fears of Americans who are concerned about their country. Using the old chestnut of saying that foreigners and migrants are to blame for the country’s ills rather than looking to prominent features of economic downturns that have happened globally.

Various far right groups in this country use their racist and misguided beliefs to blame generations of people who have established themselves in this country for the economic disasters of the banking industry which allowed greed and corporate finances to spiral out of control. It’s easier to pick on the weaker people in society and blame them where the actual blame is centred on those who have allowed greed to flourish for years.

I am certainly not a person who advocates that we march against capitalist agenda. Communism and getting rid of the free market does not work. We have seen regimes time and time again turn into dictatorial disasters. The rule of one man over one country might seem in itself to others to provide stability and moral cohesion but they always come undone by corruption and self-preservation.

My thoughts are with those who are the outcasts in society. The ones that are living on the edge where they don’t know if they are able to feed their children let alone themselves. The poor, the homeless and those who have been marginalised and used as a scape goat by the greed of politicians. A government should be allowed to rule as we voted for those in power in a democracy; we voted for those people to take control of the nation’s finances. Individually they like us should be made accountable to those who are less fortunate than ourselves.

So every time I see Trump on the stage promising to get the Mexican’s to build their own wall I am reminded of those who were made to dig their own graves in concentration camps throughout the Second World War. He is no use to America and the rest of the world. We need a stable world to build assurances and growth so all of us can live safely without fear.

Church and LGBTI

The Dean of Newcastle has signed a letter asking the Church of England to repent for discrimination against gay and lesbian Christians.

The letter that that has been written by the two leading archbishops in the Church of England. It asked for repentance and acknowledgement that the church has for too long seen those in the LGBTI community as second-class sinners.

Having been a member of the Church of England for over a decade I didn’t feel right at all that I could be open with the people who surrounded me. It was bad enough growing up in the eighties with the stigma of HIV and AIDS that still exists to this day. I cannot remember in the early days the subject of human sexuality being discussed at all in the church I attended. It wasn’t something that they were ready to discuss.

It is right for both Archbishops to acknowledge where the church has failed people but it is also up to the church to recognise that there are still within it’s walls those people who outrightly condemn same-sex relationships. The Rev’d David Holloway is a good example of someone still preaching that the scriptures specify that homosexuality is a grave sin. He works with the diocese of Newcastle and I am sure would have something to say about the Dean’s signature on such letter.

It is only when such people acknowledge and apologise for the continuing harm he is directly causing the LGBTI community. Parts of the church of England stretch across many continents and especially those in developing countries that have appalling human rights issues regarding the gay communities that are supposed minister too.

My faith died decades ago. It is replaced by rational thought. This means that I treat all human beings with equality. Regardless of their gender, race, and sexuality. The horrible and trite phrase that is often used that the sinner is somehow separated from the sin and therefore we condemn only the action but not the person themselves is utter crap. I am proud of who I am and I am not going curtail this for anyone. It is an intrinsic part of who I am and I believe made me a better person for realising how easy it is to be judgemental on things of which we may not understand.

There are people who have remained within the CofE whilst still in LGBTI relationships. Many in the clergy are gay and lesbian but in fear of being truthful and losing one’s position within the community.

I have good friends who have no issue with my sexuality and regularly attend church. They have been good examples of what the archbishops have called upon to do and is love those who are in any community whether it be gay or straight.

I acknowledge that some do not hold the same caring attitude but until those people have changed/repented (which also means moving away from their sin to which they are repenting) the church will continue to decline and be replaced by a smaller community of believers.

Mark Duggan

There is again a lot of hysteria and vitriol about the verdict of the killing of Mark Duggan. His death was said to have sparked the riots occurred in London and they spreading to various cities in the UK in the summer of 2011.

I don’t understand how someone could possibly know what happened in this incident without hearing evidence from those at the scene. The jury has sat and listened to three months of information. Some of which won’t be published in the press.

I myself have experience of when something has gone wrong in life and all I wanted was the truth to be told. I didn’t ever say that I was right or hold automatic decision of how something was going to conclude. You have to explore all areas and be open to what ever is decided.

Acting and responding to outcomes without decorum and dignity for me shows true natures of someones personality. The riots were a reflection of peoples lack of morality. It wasn’t a protest to what they thought was an injustice it was mindless thuggery and opportunism.

This isn’t to say that serious questions shouldn’t be asked of the police’s roll in gathering vital and sensitive information and using this correctly. Police should have been questioned and not allowed to pass on written statements in such serious cases. I believe now that the law has been changed so the are compelled to give face to face interviews.

The majority verdict was given that the police officer believed his life was in danger and therefore took the decision to shoot. It wasn’t a drive-by-shooting and they randomly picked a target. Mark Duggan wasn’t executed as has been claimed. The information on the case has been presented and the jury has reached it decision. If there is ANY other additional information that could change the case then that should be presented.