The Scottish Secular Society Welcomes the News That The SNP Governing Body Are Moving to Debate the Repeal of Blasphemy Laws

Posted by on 3 March, 2018 | 0 comments

The Scottish Secular Society welcomes the news that the SNP’s governing body are moving to debate the long overdue repeal of Scotland’s blasphemy laws. We fully support any move to more formally entrench freedom of expression as it is laid out in Article 19 of the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights, and hope this action gains cross party support. We would support Scotland joining England, Wales and many other countries across the world in removing blasphemy laws from the books. We also agree that such action would allow Scotland a more firm moral position when criticising human rights abuses in other states. These archaic laws are a detriment to Scottish moral discourse both at home and internationally.

While no prosecution has been made under the blasphemy laws since the 19th century, their existence represents the formal ties between the state and religious organisations that remain in existence in modern Scottish society. The repeal of blasphemy laws would be a positive action in the pursuit of a more secular Scotland but we would like to see such actions built upon. The removal of out of touch laws and unused law to be welcomed but we would push for more concrete social reform including the removal of religious observance in state schools and the removal of unelected religious appointees on council education committees.

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