Tagged: radio

BBC poll gives misleading results

I was invited by BBC Radio Essex to comment on an opinion poll commissioned by the BBC on “the Monarchy’s role in faith today” (pdf), that appears to show that the Queen should retain “a faith role”. The other contributor to this item was the Bishop of Chelmsford, Stephen Cottrell.

The BBC’s press release says,

Almost three quarters of people in England think that the Queen and future monarchs should keep the title of Supreme Governor of the Church of England and ‘Defender of the Faith’.

Additionally four-fifths (79%) of those who took part in a survey by ComRes for BBC local radio agree the Queen still has an important faith role.

73 per cent also think she should still be Defender of the Faith – a title which was originally given to Henry VIII – and remain as the Supreme Governor of the Church of England.

Only a quarter (25%) agree that the Queen and future monarchs should not have any faith role or title at all.

The survey also found opinion divided on the suggestion by Prince Charles that he might change the religious role of the monarchy.

He has called for greater understanding between people of different faiths and says he would personally rather see his role as ‘Defender of Faith’ not ‘The Faith’.

Half of those surveyed (50%) say that they agree that if Prince Charles becomes king his title should be changed to Defender of Faith compared with 35 per cent who said they disagree with the proposed change to the title.

The survey found some regional variations in attitudes to the faith role of the monarch.

 A third of Londoners (32%) agree that the Queen and future monarchs should have no faith role or title at all compared with 19% in the South West.

The item was brief, so there was only time to point out that the poll focussed people’s attention on the current monarch, who is very popular, but what if one of her heirs is not religious? And what about disestablishment?

I think that the poll results are misleading because most people won’t know what “defender of the faith” means, and will not have considered the possibilities for the future of the monarchy.

For the Bank Holiday, if you’ve nothing better to do

Sorry I’ve neglected posting anything for a while, but you could have written something yourself, you know. I’ve been in a codeine-induced stupor, due to severe back pain. No advice thanks; just send chocolate.

So, anyhow, here’s some stuff for the bank holiday.

The hoo-ha over MPs’ expenses has, it seems, led many to become so disillusioned with British politicians that they say they won’t vote. Does that mean they’re happy to delegate any decision-making to those of us who do? Were they among the 38.72% who didn’t vote last time? Maybe, if you don’t vote, you’ve no right to express an opinion about how we’re governed. What do you think?

Nigel FarageOf those who will vote, it’s been forecast that many will vote for one of the smaller parties – maybe UKIP, the BNP or the Greens. Nigel Farage, the MEP who spends all his time telling us why we shouldn’t be in the EU, has been vocal in his criticism of MPs’ expenses, but admits he’s claimed £2 million as an MEP.

The BNP has upset the church with its poster campaign, asking “What would Jesus do?” This seems a little odd, as they wouldn’t want Jesus in the UK if he had a second coming and decided to apply for British citizenship. The Archbishops of Canterbury and York are miffed about this, and have advised people not to vote BNP; they don’t think Jesus would vote BNP.

Christian PartyThe Christian Party & Christian People’s Alliance think he’d vote for them. Their manifesto is “based on biblical principles”. They’re been in trouble too; their election broadcast was censored to remove a reference to a mosque that could offend Muslims. It’s going to be hard to choose, isn’t it?