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Lifting the veil?

In Lifting the Veil? Britain confronts militant Islam, Andrew Stuttaford tackles the veil worn by Muslim women, British politeness, multiculturalism, Britain’s Racial and Religious Hatred Bill, and the absolute necessity of having the freedom of speech to speak frankly about religion. He writes in National Review,

Yes, mankind may be hardwired for religious belief, and, yes, religious identity is often at the core of an individual’s sense of self, but that’s no reason to fence it off from debate. In fact, if anything, that’s the very reason it must be subjected to debate, scrutiny, and criticism. The insanity of hermits aside, no faith operates in a solely spiritual manner. Allegiance to a religion will inevitably bring with it, one way or another, support for a social and political program.

Aside from his unhappiness with hermits, of whom he can know very little, Stuttaford makes a good point that allegiance to a religion, which is inevitably allegiance to certain ideas, will engender support for certain social and political projects.

Our research shows that Brits with Christian beliefs had "a social and political program" that brought about freedom of speech and religion, representative government, the presumption of innocence, the education of children. . .

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For more on who those Brits were and what they did .

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