Another one bites the metaphorical dust

November 27, 2008

And this time, it’s a police officer.

A Christian policeman who objected to being ‘bombarded’ at work by emails and posters promoting gay rights and events has been sacked for misconduct.

PC Graham Cogman, 50, responded to the ‘politically correct’ campaign by sending emails to colleagues which quoted religious texts and suggested homosexual sex was sinful.

Of course, being a good upstanding Christian citizen, he feels he has been discriminated against.

He confirmed he was considering an appeal against the dismissal and was continuing with plans to have his case heard by an employment tribunal on the grounds that he had been harassed over his Christian beliefs.

Apparently the police force don’t offer remedial courses in basic English.  He was not sacked because of what he believed – he was sacked because of what he did.  He is a police officer, and his duty is to uphold the law, not his personal beliefs.  If he cannot separate his personal beliefs from his actions, then he has no business being a police officer.

Good riddance to bad rubbish. One less bigot in the police can’t be a bad thing.


Legalised bigotry

July 10, 2008

This is ridiculous, infuriating, and just damned outrageous.  I previously wrote about a civil registrar who refused to do her job, because she was a homophobic bigot, and didn’t want to do her job.  She took Islington Council to an employment tribunal, claiming unfair discrimination.

Infuriatingly, she actually won.

A marriage registrar was harassed for refusing to conduct same-sex ceremonies, a tribunal has ruled.

Okay, she was harassed for attempting to break the law, which seems fine to me.  She’d be harassed if she was a racist or sexist, especially if her ignorance prevented from doing her job.  But in this case:

The tribunal ruled that Miss Ladele was discriminated against on grounds of religious beliefs and was harassed.

Or, in layman’s speak, “but it was okay, because she’s religious”.

This is bullshit.  This is utterly incredulous bullshit.

It is illegal in the UK to refuse to provide services to a person based on their sexual orientation.  Catholic adoption agencies fought hard and dirty to secure a religious opt-out.  Catholic politicians fought hard to secure a religious opt-out.  They failed.  The law of the land is quite clear: it is not acceptable – no: it is illegal – to refuse to provide a public service to a person based upon their sexual orientation.  Yet apparently, this employment tribunal thinks that there can be an exception to this law, because – erm – a person is religious.

Miss Ladele said she was being effectively forced to choose between her religion and her £31,000-a-year job as a result.

Of course she bloody was!  Like it or lump it, she provides a public service. As such, it is freaking illegal for her not to provide that service irrespective of the person’s sexual orientation.  If she didn’t like it she could simply find another f*cking job. This ruling makes a complete mockery of parliament (which doesn’t normally need a hand to be made a mockery of), and a complete mockery of the law.

But this pig-ignorant little bigot knows no bounds:

“It is a victory for religious liberty, not just for myself but for others in a similar position to mine.

Bullshit.  This – like every other debate going on within the churches at the moment – has f*ck-all to do with “religious liberty”, and everything to do with personal bigotry.

The next time some pissant little theist tries to claim religious discrimination, and state intimidation against religion, or some ridiculous form of martyrdom because they’re being oppressed by the state machinary, I’m not going to bother to point to the bishops in the house of Lords. Nor will I bother to point to the huge number of state schools run by religious institutions, or the ridiculous amount of money the Anglican church owns, or the unprecedented restrictions on the right to protest in Australia over the pope’s – hideously mis-named – “World Youth Day”.  I will simply point to this decision, which shows just how much power the religious really do have.

It’s sickening.

Here we go again.

May 21, 2008

Another day, another story about a religious bigot who refuses to do the job they’re paid for.

A civil registrar who refuses to officiate at partnerships between same-sex couples, claiming that it is “sinful” and against her religion, has brought a legal case that could have implications for ceremonies conducted throughout the country.

Note that this is a civil registrar, employed by the town hall to perform a public duty.  She is not paid to discriminate.  Once again, there is a simple solution to her dilemma: get another job.  If you have a particular conviction then you should be the one to suffer for it, not the general public.  I don’t care what that conviction is. For example: when I started work as a programmer, I wrote real-time motion control applications (monitoring and robotics, prinicpally), as such I could probably demand a high wage in the arms industry writing missile guidance systems.  But I have a private conviction that I won’t write applications for the military, so I don’t.  I forgo the money I could make writing military applications, and opt to do the best job I can in civil industries.  What I don’t do is what this woman is doing: I don’t go screaming to the arms industry claiming discrimination.

The simple fact is that this woman – like many religious people, including some of our own polititians – is a bigot.  She may also be religious, but this is simply an attempt to make her bigotry “acceptable”, and it is telling indeed that many in the media – and in government – appear to be buying this hook, line and sinker.

But it gets worse.  This homophobic bigot is claiming persecution too because:

Ms Ladele, who has worked for the council for 16 years, alleged that she was accused of being homophobic by gay colleagues at Islington town hall and was shunned by staff after refusing to carry out civil partnerships.

You read that right.  She’s actively attempting to discriminate against gays, and is shocked – shocked! – to find that she’s being described as homophobic.  But isn’t that precisely what she is?  Or is she claiming that the word “homophobic” cannot be applied to someone who is religious?

She claimed that she was “ridiculed” by her boss, the superintendent registrar Helen Mendez-Childs, when she raised her concerns about the new ceremonies in August 2004.

Ridicule?  Personally, I couldn’t heap enough ridicule on this woman, and I think she’s doing a pretty damned good at ridiculing herself.  But what was this alleged ridicule?

Ms Ladele said that her superior had told her that her stance was akin to a registrar refusing to marry a black person.

And her superior had it bang on the money.  It is akin to a registrar refusing to marry a black person.  It is akin to refusing to marry an inter-racial couple. It is unwarranted discrimination, and it is wrong.

“There was no respect whatsoever for my religious beliefs,” she said.

And neither should there be.  Respect is earned.  Just because a belief is religious does not suddenly mean it has earned respect.  If superstitious clap-trap is making you believe stupid things, then you believe stupid things, and those views don’t suddenly become worth of respect: they’re still worthy of horror and ridicule.

It’s about time the religious started feeling uncomfortable discriminating against gays.  It’s about time that politicians ignored any organisation that promotes this kind of bigotry, instead of pandering to them. And it’s about time that those religious people who feel that their “personal convictions” stop them performing the duties they are paid to perform either found other jobs, or stopped having such stupid “personal convictions”.