A Candle in the Dark

A look on science, politics, religion and events

May the force not be with you

with one comment

From the Racial and Religious Hatred Bill, passed by the House of Commons in the UK

‘17B Meaning of “religious belief”

For the purposes of section 17A a religious belief is confined to—
(a) Christianity;
(b) Islam;
(c) Hinduism;
(d) Judaism;
(e) Buddhism;
(f) Sikhism;
(g) Rastafarianism;
(h) Baha’ism;
(i) Zoroastrianism;
(j) Jainism.’.

’17B Groups not protected by Part 3

For the purposes of section 17A any group of persons holding the following religious beliefs or lack of religious belief shall not enjoy the protection of this part of the Act—

(a) Satanists;
(b) believers in human sacrifice to propitiate a deity;
(c) believers in animal sacrifice to propitiate a deity;
(d) believers in female genital mutilation to live in accordance with the rules of a religion;
(e) believers in violence as a means of proselytising a belief;
(f) believers in the supremacy or superiority of one race over another;
(g) believers in the supremacy or superiority of one gender over another;
(h) Scientologists;
(i) Jedi Knights.’.


In fact, it gets better. From the transcript of the MP’s discussing the bill,

Mr. Grieve: In amendment No. 25, I listed Scientologists before Jedi Knights. There has been debate about whether Scientology is a religion, and there is a court authority to suggest that it is a set of philosophical beliefs but not a belief in a deity. I leave that to one side. With Jedi Knights, it is difficult to know. They seem to believe in a force, because the force has to be with you, and they appear to be able to master the force by the processes of their own spirituality.

Chris Bryant: It is fictional.

Mr. Grieve: I have no idea whether being a Jedi Knight is fictional. The text from which it is derived was written by an author who was not pretending that it was revealed truth, but there seem to be a number of people who, for their own reasons, put in their census return that it is their religious view. I cannot comment any further on that.

Chris Bryant: I hate to say this, but it is also true that several hon. Members have placed light sabres in the Cloakroom in the place where they could be hanging their swords. I do not think that that means that anyone believes genuinely in the power of the force in the sense of a religion.


Written by parseval

December 25, 2008 at 7:29 am

Posted in fun

One Response

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  1. “I have a bad feeling about this.”


    January 14, 2009 at 9:11 pm

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