Should Thought for the Day be scrapped?
While the BHA gets excited at the prospect of the BBC including Humanist thoughts in Radio 4 Today’s god-bothering slot, I’m not keen on the idea. Yes, I know I did T4TDs on local radio for years (necessitating early risings that totally messed up my metabolic clock – I don’t do mornings), but I’ve gone off them since then. How many people take them seriously? I get the impression that most people use them as an opportunity to go to the loo or put the kettle on, without missing anything worth listening to. Some of the ones I’ve done make me cringe, now I’ve re-read them. Maybe it’s because I’m more cynical in my old age, but T4TD has been used as a platform for pontification and as an opportunity to spout a load of twaddle. By associating itself with the slot, the BHA could be seen to be condoning the provision of twaddle – it might even provide some twaddle of its own.
I agree with Ron Ferguson, who wrote in yesterday’s Herald, “It’s rather odd, within a news programme in which assumptions are regularly challenged, to suddenly have a space in which a representative of a particular faith tradition makes a commentary on a current issue for two or three minutes, without any hard questions being asked.” However, the possibility of any hard questions being asked of the T4TD contributors is even less likely than the inclusion of atheist voices ever was. Let them all just shut up.