During the BBC’s local election coverage David Dimbleby described Nigel Farage as ‘the man whose hour has come’. Despite UKIP winning control of no Councils (and their share of the vote actually falling compared with 2013) the media and the party seemed determined to portray a small tremor in the political landscape as a UKIP ‘earthquake’. But I would suggest that if any cracks are about to appear, they will be in UKIP itself, not the political Establishment it claims to reject.
On the eve of the European elections, patriotism – or at least politicians' appropriation of that condition – is much in the air. I shall refrain from any temptation to refer to scoundrelly tendencies and consider instead, the gentler, and what I believe to be the more fruitful concept of a 'sense of place.'
Hosted by the Iona Community and Fellowship of Reconciliation Scotland, Chris Cole, coordinator of the advocacy and information organisation, Drone Wars UK, is currently on a short Scottish tour, coinciding with Christian Aid Week and the start of the Church of Scotland General Assembly.
When the banks wrecked the economy, people were angry: angry with politicians, bankers, and super-rich tax dodgers. Movements like Occupy questioned the very foundations of our global capitalist economy. Voters needed a party or a leader who would understand their anger, who would reject business as usual politics and teach the establishment a lesson. So what did that establishment need?
Minorities, dissidents and the poor in India are at risk as extreme-right politician Narendra Modi takes control as prime minister. He represents the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), part of the Hindutva movement, which misuses religion in the quest for power.
Ministers in the Baptist Union of Great Britain who bless same-sex partnerships will no longer be disciplined for doing so if they have the support of their local church. I think this is brilliant news.
Yesterday saw the formal launch of the White Feather Diaires, a social media project exploring the lives of British pacifists during the first world war. The project's run by Quakers in Britain, who hired me as a writer and an editor for the project. I'm really pleased to be working on this project. Yesterday we announced the names of the five individuals whose writings will form the basis of the project, when it goes online in the summer.
New Zealand’s Anglican church has agree to explore ways of blessing same-sex relationships, while protecting the freedom of those who disagree. Meanwhile senior Church of England clergy have warned that opposing inclusion is undermining Christian witness.
“They showed themselves weak in trying to frighten us.” My grandfather's words about the Blackshirts, born out of his experience of the conflict of Cable Street, have stayed in my mind. As a young child, I sensed their import, even though I had little understanding of the context or the meaning. I revisited his words with an adult understanding in the light of two occasions of weak and ugly behaviours from UKIP supporters over the last few days.