A C Grayling: The rise of Miliband brings at last the prospect of an atheist prime minister
When Labour cabinet members were asked about their religious allegiances last December, following Tony Blair’s official conversion to Roman Catholicism, it turned out that more than half of them are not believers. The least equivocal about their atheism were the health secretary, Alan Johnson, and foreign secretary David Miliband.
The fact that Miliband is an atheist is a matter of special interest given the likelihood that he may one day, and perhaps soon, occupy No 10. In our present uncomfortable climate of quarrels between pushy religionists and resisting secularists – or attack-dog secularists and defensive religionists: which side you are on determines how you see it – there are many reasons why it would be a great advantage to everyone to have an atheist prime minister.