Police Scotland refuses to accept that its “Dear Bigots” posters promote hatred towards Christians

The posters from One Scotland. In October the Barnabas Fund lodged a formal complaint about them, stating that they were likely to stir up anti-Christian prejudice and calling for their withdrawal.
The posters from One Scotland. In October the Barnabas Fund lodged a formal complaint about them, stating that they were likely to stir up anti-Christian prejudice and calling for their withdrawal.

Police Scotland have refused to accept that its recent “Dear Bigots” posters, displayed in all Scottish cities, promote anti-Christian hatred.

Christian aid organization The Barnabas Fund, which supports persecuted Christians around the world, stated on 18 December that they had received a response to their formal complaint about these posters in which Police Scotland exonerated themselves from the claim they had published anti-Christian hate propaganda.

“Dear Bigots, you can’t spread your religious hate here. End of sermon. Yours, Scotland.”

“Dear Bigots” poster published by One Scotland

As is frequently the case whenever asking a corporate body to admit that it is clearly in the wrong, Police Scotland’s response failed to address the substance of the Barnabas Fund’s complaint, it said, which is that the posters are a possible breach of international human rights because they constitute state sponsorship of hostility against a particular religious group.

One of the posters contains the wording, “Dear Bigots, you can’t spread your religious hate here. End of sermon. Yours, Scotland.”

“The use of the word ‘sermon,’ a word associated principally with Christian congregational worship, and the posters’ use of the Baskerville typeface which was commonly used in printed English Bibles, in connexion with the idea of ‘spreading religious hate,’ is bound to reinforce the notion that Christianity = religious hate/religious bigotry. The posters are therefore actually promoting hate crimes against a particular religious group.”

The use of the word ‘sermon,’ a word associated principally with Christian congregational worship, and the posters’ use of the Baskerville typeface which was commonly used in printed English Bibles, in connexion with the idea of “spreading religious hate,” is bound to reinforce the notion that Christianity = religious hate/religious bigotry. The posters are therefore actually promoting hate crimes against a particular religious group.

Christians in the UK are already well accustomed to being accused of bigotry simply for disagreeing with the views of the left-wing intelligentsia.

In May, Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg rightly called out the BBC’s Jo Coburn for implying that a practising Roman Catholic was, on that basis, unfit to hold high office. Last year the Independent Online sneeringly reported the findings of a study suggesting that religious people were more tolerant than atheists. And on 15th June last year, in the wake of Tim Farron’s resignation as leader of the Liberal Democrats, Nick Robinson on Radio 4’s Today programme asked Liberal Democrat MP Sir Simon Hughes whether holding traditional Christian beliefs about sexuality or abortion “is bound to colour your attitude to attitude to public policy, to law, [and] to tolerance[1] (I wrote to the BBC about this remark).

The “Dear Bigots” posters can only serve to reinforce this stereotype and to increase hostility against Christians. It is to be hoped that further action will be taken.

 

 

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[1] Emphasis mine.

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