St. Nadine

nadineDM0603_228x674Earlier this week, I thought it might be a good idea to remind people about the disturbing Christian fundamentalist friends and organisations linked to Nadine Dorries, the Conservative MP. I need not have worried- true to form, Ms Dorries has yet again provided us with another prime example as to why politics and religion do not, and should not ever mix.

In her latest blog post she manages to berate the Bishop of Liverpool for being ‘slightly too political’. Then in the same breath accuses him of not speaking up on Christian matters that also have an impact on the political world.

Of course, this all comes down to the abortion issue yet again. Ms Dorries is ‘amazed’ that Church of England Bishops do not speak our more with regards to the ‘big questions’. This is obviously in comparison with the more evangelical forms of Christianity that Ms Dorries prefers. For example, as I’ve mentioned previously we know that Ms Dorries has worked closely with groups such as Christian Concern for our Nation; and that through Ms Dorries these fundamentalist groups have received unprecedented access to Parliament – access that most other hard line religious groups could only dream of.

To clarify: I really don’t care about an individuals personal religious views – you should be free to worship or believe in anything you want. What I do find disturbing is when a publicly elected member of parliament allows her own religious views to colour her public duties. Worse still is the fact that Ms Dorries allows herself to be publicly associated with fundamentalist groups.

As Alastair Campbell once famously said – “We don’t do God”. Guess what? He was right as well  – David Cameron would do well to remember that.

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The Danger of Dorries

Another week goes by, and as sure as night follows day, Nadine Dorries continues to fail to engage brain before mouth. Last week, via her blog, (essential reading as always), and now on Twitter, she continued to maintain her unchallenged claim of being the Walter Mitty of politics.

We all watched last week as Nadine basically lied about the TUC’s call to ban high heels in the workplace.We all watched as she attempted to whip up a media storm for her own publicity seeking self.

All of which brings us to Nadine’s latest blog post regarding Iran, and Ahmadinejad’s holocaust denials. What starts out as a fairly balanced piece, calling for greater support of the opposition movement, ends with Nadine calling for pre-emptive strikes against key installations.

No one wants to see an ancient Persia with its people and history in danger. However, no sensible person wants to see the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty broken after 40 years, or a bomb in Ahmadinejad’s hands.

It may be that sanctions are necessary, it may also be that these will be coupled with air strikes of critical installations.

We are nearer and nearer to such a reality each day.

It is a terrifying unedifying thought and one that could be avoided if those within Iran who wish to topple the regime were given more support from outside.

So, more sound and fury signifying nothing? Or, should we once again look more closely at the people and organisations behind Nadine Dorries?

In May 2008, Dorries was featured in a Channel 4 edition of Dispatches. The episode, “In Gods Name”, investigated various aspects of the fundamentalist Christian movement in this country – much of which was centred around the group Christian Concern for our Nation. This group was effectively using Dorries as a mouthpiece in the build up to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill. In a blog post at the time, I questioned the viability of an elected member of parliament allowing a fundamentalist group access to parliament. A group that not only opposes gay rights and homosexuality in general, but also declares Islam to be a ‘false religion’.

Yet again, I fear that Dorries is actively pursuing an anti-Islamic agenda – pushed forward by not only CCFON, but also by their sister organisation, the Christian Legal Centre . As before, the link is Andrea Minichiello Williams , a key advisor to Dorries, and a woman who quite openly describes herself as a fundamentalist.

Here they are together last year. This clip is so disturbing it’s almost laughable.

I could be clutching at straws here, after all, it is very easy to mock Dorries and her often ridiculous comments. However, it is important to consider what could happen should the Tories gain power next year – politicians such as Dorries will not be sidelined by Cameron, and as such we should be very, very fearful of a swing to the right by the Tories.

A move that could not only lead to  greater religious and sexual intolerance, but could also put thousands of women at risk following a potential change in this countries abortion laws.

We must not let that happen.