Thursday, 31 December 2009

Goodbye 2009

Just a quickie. I'm going to follow up on a couple of earlier posts.

But firstly I'd like to thank you, dear reader, for your visits over the last few months. I've had a lot of fun writing, and I hope you'll continue to visit in 2010.

The Supreme Court has dismissed, by a slim five to four majority, an appeal against the ruling that the state-funded Jewish Free School in north London had breached the Race Relations Act with their admissions procedure. A case had been brought by a child who had been deemed admission on the grounds that his convert mother was not considered properly Jewish by the Office of the Chief Rabbi.

I originally covered this in Sins of the Mothers.

The judges were clear that the school has not been “racist in the popular sense of the word” and that the Race Relations Act may require amendment for such cases.

Personally, I’d rather that we didn’t contort the Race Relations Act into any kind of inconsistent ideological pretzel to appease a form of bias which, if it were less established, would leap out as obviously unpalatable. Let’s just get on with educating our young in an inclusive way.

Andrew Copson of the British Humanist Association said:
“It puts beyond doubt the position that, even though there may be a religious motivation for doing so, discrimination against children in admissions on racial grounds is illegal under any circumstances … This is not a matter of restricting ‘religious freedom’ or otherwise: that the admissions criteria of a state-funded faith school have been found to be racially discriminatory should be enough impetus to look carefully at the criteria all faith schools use to discriminate in their admissions.”

And for those of you holding your breath for the reply from the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God, I’m guessing that you have a light touch of rigor-mortis by now. The church proposes that a common sleep disorder is a spiritual problem and offers “services for spiritual cleansing” which will “break any curse”. The original blog is here.

I'm guessing the secretary is off or the typewriter is broken.

A very happy New Year's Eve and 2010 to all.

J x

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