Humanist group throws thousands at research into rooting out “special laws, practises or exemptions for religions or religious organisations” north of the border
Alex Salmond and his merry band of Scottish nationalists may have suffered something of a setback in their bid for independence from wicked Westminster and evil England — but some of their countrymen are setting their sights even higher.
The latest group of plucky Scots is aiming to gain independence from God.
Earlier this week, the Humanist Society Scotland announced it was chucking £40,000 at a research project to assess “the effect to which Scots law provides a place of privilege for religion”.
The lucky recipient of that large slice of what is still pound sterling north of the border is the University of Glasgow, which will audit Scots law “to provide an authoritative guide to the extent to which it makes special provision for religion and religious organisations”.
The work will include a detailed study of contemporary and historical legal sources leading to the publication of a report next summer.
Explaining the rationale behind the research, HSS chief executive Douglas Mclellan said his organisation “believes that for Scotland to progress as a fair and equal nation, it needs to be a nation with no special laws, practises or exemptions for religions or religious organisations.
“We are supporting this project to demonstrate where religion currently has privileges, which will then allow us to work with the Scottish government and MSPs … to take opportunities to amend legislation and reduce religious privilege.”
Two professors — Jane Mair from the law faculty and history and humanities specialist Callum Brown — will oversee the rooting out of unwanted God particles in Scots law.
Commented Brown said:
“No complete guide to religion in Scots law has been compiled since the Victorian period, and there have been so many changes in church, religion and the law since then that there is a need to provide a one-stop resource for lawyers, humanists, church people, journalists and academics.”