24 May 2007

Blair's Faith

Readers may wish to comment on the following letter from today's Independent:

Sir: Of all the reviews of Tony Blair's legacy the ones I find most surprising are those which refer to his Christian faith as though that had been pivotal in his policy making. True, he has been supportive in campaigning for trade justice but over a wide area of domestic policy he has largely ignored the pleadings from faith communities.

Recently there has been the case of the Sexual Orientation Regulations where the "gay rights" agenda has taken priority over the rights of those with an orthodox Christian conscience. In schools, the distribution of condoms and morning-after pills has taken precedence over moral education, even though such a policy has led to an increase in sexually transmitted diseases and in contributing to Britain having the highest abortion rate in Europe.

Economically it has been more advantageous for couples to live together rather than marry, and mothers have been pressured into dumping young children in nurseries rather than being helped to be good home-makers.

Commenting on an adulterous minister Tony Blair said "he'd done nothing wrong", quite apart from trying to conceal the sleaze of cash for peerages.

On top of all this we've had the liberalising of drugs and drink laws, the promotion of big-time gambling, and new media laws which have made it more difficult to get a clean-up of TV.



Rudi said...

Mr. Wainwright appears to have forgotten the war in Iraq which fails the test of "Just War" and was opposed by all the major churches.

buster said...

I agree with Rudi.
Blair has the death of soldiers and Dr Kelly on his conscience. It is a pity that he wasn't a Christian while PM.
Perhaps he hopes for absolution as a latter day Catholic.

MikeC said...

I see Tony Blair's true legacy as even more dangerous / destructive than this. The notion that our PM is a Christian, pervades many conversations I have when discussing politics and faith, and because of things he has said and done (as underlined in this letter and comments), the right connection between faith and politics is thoroughly undermined.

The questions posed is: "If a 'Christian' PM can do the things he has done, then what difference does faith have?"

Rudi said...

MikeC points to a real danger with appeals to “Christian politics”. It can too easily be used as a pseudo-guarantee that “all policies are good, upright and just”. Such a use of the Gospel as a mark of respectability or a hook for a certain section of the electorate will bring much damage to the work of the Gospel when the ensuing policies fail to bring greater justice. Christian politics is a task to be undertaken with much fear and trembling as it places us under the norm of service to God and neighbour in the outworking of justice for all.

Ruth said...

Maybe someone should explain to the poor chap what he's claiming. If he understood what it meant to deny himself and take up his cross, for example, or to serve 'God and neighbour in the outworking of justice for all' he might either drop the label or, even better, live up to it.

MikeC said...

Another issue that vexes me is a right regard to so-called 'private life' events that are brought into the public eye. Surely if a politician, claiming to represent his constituency and hence relying on a contract of trust between himself and his electors, can betray his or another man's wife, thus breaking arguably the most important relationship (and importantly both social and legal contract) in his life, surely, that politician must acknowledge the importance that this evidence on non-trustworthiness has in a debate over his position of power.

Or am I too old-fashioned to think that a person's actions should match his words, and vice-versa, and that integrity shouldn't only be measured by what particular political creed is flavour of the day?