Before I look at this from a distance let me say I’m fully against any group of sky fairy worshipers getting in my face. When I go to the cinema to watch STAR WARS if I get the CoE advertising their imaginary friend while I’m sitting there I’m going to be annoyed. I don’t want to have to sit through that sort of crap nor do I want to have to leave the cinema to avoid it. When I’m sitting there waiting for the film the only religion I’m interested in is Sith, oh and maybe Jedi a bit.
To my mind religion is something personal, you can bother whatever imaginary friend you want to in private but don’t wave your sky fairy in my face, Christmas IS NOT a Christian festival and when I’m waiting for STAR WARS to start being forced fed anyone’s religion is going to result in deaths, slow painful deaths.
Anyway, on a less biased and less passionate note.
Is this discrimination, is the Church of England causing a fuss for no real reason but a load of cheap publicity at a time when they are looking at people walking away from them and many other religions as having no place in the 21st century.
The advert was a minute long and as the church pointed out contains no actual reference to God or to the CoE. But and this is a huge BUT, the words are extremely recognizable, the lord’s prayer or at least the modern version of it from the most recent version of the King James bible. It is recognizable to a wide variety of people, both Christian and otherwise as it is perhaps the most common Christian prayer.
It doesn’t need to have a banner saying Christian or Church of England. It is very recognizable. It is distinct and within seconds it can be identified even without the first few seconds showing a rather well known figure.
So the argument that this isn’t blatantly religious doesn’t work.
Next, is this discrimination, does this violate the law against protected speech.
Where to start with this one. The law protects people who follow a religion, it is intended to prevent discrimination against the religious, at no point does it ever say that other people are forced to parrot religious doctrine. The advertising company turned this down because they felt it would upset people. Well duh. To start with you are talking millions of fanatical STAR WARS fans, geeks and nerds who have booked their tickets long since and will be queuing outside their cinema long before the doors open at midnight.
Us nerds and geeks may be quiet but we are not a group you want to piss off and force feeding us your religion while we are geeking out waiting for OUR film to start, really bad plan there people. As far as annoying follows of Islam or Judaism, well if they were going to see STAR WARS they are probably Geeks first and religious second so will be double pissed off because their excitement is being interrupted by religion and because it’s not their religion.
Even if you are CoE who wants the church getting in your face while you are in full on geek mode out waiting for the film to start.
The advertising company is not being forced to show anything, they are allowed to choose what they show and what they don’t, it’s not censorship, it’s wanting to avoid annoying the audience and speaking personally interrupting the flow of my STAR WARS geek with some prayer from the CoE is annoying.
So when they decided not to show the Church of England advert it was good business not an act against the church.
Next, this is an attack on the church. Oh right, another attack on Christianity, poor religion, so many people attacking them these days. Churches closing everywhere, the CoE no longer the power behind the throne or burning heretics in the square for the amusement of the mob.
No it’s not an attack specifically on you, it’s a reflection of society at large, the 21st century and the last generation of people who may have be born into a Christian nation but have long since walked away or who were born into the current generation for whom god is about as real as Santa Claus, probably less real since the sky fairy doesn’t bring presents.
Turning down an advert isn’t discrimination, not wanting to annoy people with the lord’s prayer when they are trapped in a cinema isn’t discrimination, though ramming your faith down people’s throats when they are trapped and can’t easily leave could easily be described as forced Proselytism (forcing people to listen to a religious sermon or speech in an attempt to convert them to your faith). If people want to hear your prayers they can go visit you, everyone else who isn’t interested would rather not have you bringing your prayers to us. Yes the idea that people would convert just because they heard one advert of the lord’s prayer is silly, this whole situation is silly.
The CoE tried to get into everyone’s faces and in the process tried to piss off millions of Geeks in the worst possible way; you do not interrupt the pre STAR WARS Geek like this, ever.
The ad was stopped because the ad company thought it was a bad business idea, which it was.
The CoE have spend a lot of money that could probably have been better spend on the needy and by complaining and kicking up a fuss they have gained a great deal of free publicity for themselves. Well done, your marketing and PR consultant was worth the money after all. You got the headlines.
Now go away and do not, that is DO NOT try to push your religion in my face again, not when I’m waiting for the music to start and STAR WARS to begin and not an any other time.
But mostly not when I’m waiting for STAR WARS.