Billy

It’s another real-life joke! This is the story. This is part of the Billy Connolly routine. And this is a recent screenshot from Asda’s online store:


Discussion (71)¬

  1. MattR says:

    If Asda really does sell the BC DVD then 3 gold stars for you Author: drawing attention to the stupid decision, highlighting the gross (but hilarious) hypocrisy and also telling us how to get hold of a copy 🙂

  2. M27Holts says:

    I suppose that an employer. Finding out that we post on here. Can sack us for gross misconduct? I am very careful what I post on facebook now. I have had several friends get bans for supposedly islamaphobic posts….

  3. MarkyWarky says:

    An Asda spokesman said “we do not tolerate any form of discrimination”, but didn’t go on to say “unless of course it’s against someone who posts the views of someone else who finds the worst excesses of religion deeply offensive – they’re fair game because we’re not scared of them”.

    We HAVE to stop regarding the fact that someone has a “deeply held belief” in bollocks as any reason to protect them from criticism. We don’t do it for people who have a deeply held belief that black people are all criminals, so why do we do it for those that believe in sky fairies?

  4. MarkyWarky says:

    By the way, we foster a Muslim child. Neither of the Asda stores near us sells Halal meat in their restaurant, or their pre-packed meat section, or in their butchery section. Surely the fact that 4/5 of our family can shop or eat there while 1/5 can’t is the very essence of discrimination?

  5. HaggisForBrains says:

    That’s another fucking irony meter ruined!

  6. MarkyWarky says:

    OK, so email sent to roger.burnley@asda.co.uk, CEO of Asda. I don’t imagine I’ll get any reply, but it’s worth a shot:

    “Dear Mr Burnley.

    I understand that your company has recently dismissed an employee because he shared a clip of a Billy Connolly routine on his Facebook page. The clip showed Mr Connelly airing his views on religion (all religions), but was objected to by a colleague resulting in the dismissal despite an apology being issued by your employee.

    Can you please explain to me why your company has chosen to discriminate against those who have a deeply held belief that religion has no factual basis, and in some cases no moral standing in today’s world? Your spokesman claimed that Asda “do not tolerate any form of discrimination”, and yet have taken away someone’s livelihood as a result of them posting a sketch by someone who’s deeply held beliefs do not agree with those of the religious. Is that not discrimination in itself?

    How does your action in dismissing this employee square with the fact that you do or did sell the Billy Connelly DVD that the clip was taken from? Was your employee not simply promoting an item that you profit from?

    Further, while my family does not hold religious beliefs, we do foster a Muslim child and support that child in their faith. Can you please reconcile your claim not to tolerate any form of discrimination with the fact that neither of the Asda stores close to us, at least one of which has a “catchment area” that includes a significant Muslim community, sells Halal meat? Is the fact that 4/5 of my family can eat and shop at your store while 1/5 cannot the very essence of discrimination? Does the fact that you sell or sold the DVD you’ve decided is offensive and choose not to stock Halal meats, while penalising an employee for sharing views that are not even his own an example of extreme hypocrisy?

    I look forward to your reply in due course.

    Regards,”

  7. Forse says:

    @markyWarky why are obliged to feed 1/5 of your family Halal food? Because they are Muslim? But surely that’s not fixed in stone? Just a belief system. Why not bring up that foster child in your own beliefs — or those of broader society — rather than Islam?

  8. Forse says:

    By the way this story is depressing. ASDA ought to suffer for its pusillanimity

  9. Mr Yan says:

    @Forse

    Can you imagine the headlines – non-muslim family feeds haram meat to foster child? Be a fatwa on them before you can say “????? ????? ?? ????”.

  10. MarkyWarky says:

    @Forse, because foster carers are required to support the wishes and beliefs of the young people in their care, within reasonable limits. So we would not be required to support attempts to radicalise him or her, but are required to support him or her in his or her chosen faith.

    We could talk about whether or not children really do choose a faith, but society does not yet take the view that children cannot have a freely chosen faith, and foster carers work for society. We are foster carers, not adoptive parents.

    So far the child has expressed a desire to follow the Muslim faith, and it would be discriminatory of us to deliberately try to change that, though of course that does not mean we have to shield him or her from alternative viewpoints.

    Bringing him or her up in our atheistic beliefs would be as bad as a Christian refusing to issue a marriage licence to a gay couple. We are public servants and are not allowed to let our own views or beliefs interfere with our work.

  11. MarkyWarky says:

    Also @Force, because the moral messages he or she will receive at the moderate (I’d suggest mainstream) mosque that we’ve identified for him or her provide a good counter to the messages and attitudes that his or her family have given him or her, those being the very reason he or she is in care in the first place. We could give those messages secularly, but he or she is much more likely to accept them from a familiar source. Needs must @Force, needs must.

  12. Michael says:

    MarkyWarky, if you get a response please post it so we can see Asda’s attempt to justify firing the guy and not carrying halal meat.

  13. MarkyWarky says:

    And finally @Forse, because we don’t know how long he or she will be with us (again, we foster, we’re not adopters). Do you have any idea at all how much damage a lack of consistency can do to a looked after child, who’s every change is a loss potentially of bereavement proportions? Islam is the only constant this poor child has in their lives at the moment, and we’re not prepared to take that away no matter how much we might disagree with the beliefs.

  14. M27Holts says:

    No such thing as a Muslim child…obviously…

  15. MarkyWarky says:

    So you’d take away even that bit of his or her identity then, would you @M27Holts? I get where you’re coming from, but in the real world we have to look to his or her needs, and those include clinging on to something from his or her past life. Perhaps I should have said “child who currently self identifies as part of the Muslim community”, or “child who has to date been brought up to follow Islam”? Like it or lump it, he or she is both of those things, and our job is to limit and then if possible repair the emotional damage he or she has suffered (not through Islam; through appalling parenting regardless of faith or none).

  16. MattR says:

    That’s a tricky one MarkyWarky, but appreciate you are doing a mega-important job and trying your best to navigate the legal and ethical boundaries. I seriously don’t know what else you should do. Hats off! Good luck with the letter to Asda. Tempted to send one myself, but worried that MY employer could hold such engagement against me. Liberal values are to be lauded… until they’re applied to religion, at which point they become a sackable offence.

  17. Jesus F. Iscariot, Esq. says:

    I don’t have a phobia about Islam or Islamists or Christism. Maybe Islamdislikia. Possibly Christdistastia.

    Is there an effective, catchy label for the superstitious believers in magical sky fairies who discriminate against rational thinking? Rationalphobia? Empiricophobia? Maybe xenophobia, but it is insufficiently specific.

    Unfortunate that the gentleman was robbed of his employment by bigots—especially after his very conciliatory apology. I pray (figure of speech) that he is reinstated.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Well now @M27Holts. In a pedantic world you’d be right (though even then are you sure that’s true of a 17 year old – still a child but old enough to decide for themselves, maybe?), but in the real world it depends on how you define “being Muslim”. In this case:

    – From a family that identifies itself as Muslim? Yes
    – Growing up with predominantly Muslim influences such as festivals and practices? Yes.
    – Coming from a predominantly Muslim community? Yes.
    – From a family who originate from a predominantly Muslim country? Yes.
    – Regardless of why, or whether it’s to be desired, self identifying as Muslim? Yes.
    – More comfortable in a Muslim place of worship than any other? Yes.
    – Has chosen the Muslim faith having considered and researched all others and none? No (but then how many believers have, even adult ones?).

    So on balance, I think describing him as a Muslim child, for the purposes of his foster care, is valid 🙂

  19. MarkyWarky says:

    @M27Holts, while I agree with you on a moral level, for the practical purposes of this child’s foster care, “Muslim child” is a useful description – he or she is culturally Muslim, his or her family originates from a predominately Muslim country and lives in a Muslim community here, his or her experiences of festivals etc are largely Muslim, and for whatever reason he or she describes him/herself as that.

    No, he or she hasn’t researched all other faiths and none to come to an informed decision about what is true (how many believers have, even adult ones?), but we are where we are and “Muslim child” does help inform us about his needs – including the need for identity and consistency.

  20. MarkyWarky says:

    Hmm, anonymous and the other MarkyWarky above are me, when I forgot to put my email address in and it looked like I’d lost the posts! Oh well, you now have all three of my attempts to reply to M27Holts!!!!

    Sorry for hogging the thread 🙁

  21. HelenaHandbasket says:

    MarkyWarky: What an interesting situation. Please do keep us all appraised of what ASDA say. I confidently predict that it will a spew of cliche-ridden corporate gobshite, but you never know.

  22. Snowball says:

    No doubt it isn’t offensive to openly portray a being who would subject you and your loved ones to the most hideous torture imaginable for all of eternity as loving and omni-benevolent. Because I would imagine that would sting a bit and become quite tedious after a while.

  23. Steve Sherman says:

    MarkyWarky, I would nomally find it difficult to take someone with your handle seriously, but your engagement for your foster child and your commitment to the requirements of the role are commendable. Please don’t be swayed by bigots, whether religious or non-religious.

  24. Coel says:

    @MarkyWarky”

    “Is the fact that 4/5 of my family can eat and shop at your store while 1/5 cannot the very essence of discrimination?”

    No, since it’s your family (or part of it) choosing not to eat the produce at that store, not that store refusing to serve your family. A butcher is not required to cater for vegans; if a vegan wants something else they can go elsewhere.

  25. HaggisForBrains says:

    MarkyWarky – Respect.

  26. MarkyWarky says:

    @Coel, if not selling Halal was the only issue, it’d be a non-issue and you’d be right (neither do Tesco’s or Morrison’s). It’s when combined with feigned concern for Muslims and added to the hypocrisy of selling the very DVD the clip they objected to comes from, that it becomes a problem.

  27. M27Holts says:

    Regarding the premise that “a child cannot be muslim”…I stand by that. And it again shows that religious cultural power has precedence over all….since the child fostered in this case could also be labeled a man utd child if the parents had influenced them in a very similar way….until religion is consigned to the bin where it belongs human beings will not progress and become extinct as the religious nuts want…

  28. Someone says:

    I agree that no child is born religious. They are made so by years of systematic indoctrination. This ultimately is what causes such toxicity and dissension when discussing tolerance, as the heavily religious want to win the argument both ways; they are right and you are wrong, and you are especially wrong for expressing any form of opposition.
    But we all already know this. The only reason it needs repeating is because the pious insist on repeating themselves, ad nauseam, for eternity it seems.

  29. MarkyWarky says:

    @M27Holts, I agree with you wholeheartedly when it comes to the future of humanity, BUT humanity also demands that we look after each other’s individual welfare’s, especially that of the vulnerable, and right now I have to concern myself with the future of this kid, not humanity. We are talking about a child who has already been severely damaged, possibly for life, and I’m not prepared to sacrifice him on the alter of forced secularism.

    If you want me to claim some kind of contribution to creating a world free of conflict (I don’t, but will to help you sleep better despite knowing that there are children NOT being encouraged away from their faiths by atheists), perhaps I’m showing the world that atheists and Muslims CAN live in perfect harmony (“side by side on my piano keyboard, oh Lord, why don’t we?”; sorry, couldn’t resist poking fun at the sanctimonious claim I’m being forced to make), even within the same family and alongside a gay teenager, while giving him or her access to alternative ideas that he or she would be shielded from otherwise.

    Yep, I’d gladly take faith away from any kid not suffering from severe attachment disorder and trauma, but that’s not this kid.

    And by the way, he or she is not a Man Utd fan. That would be completely intolerable 🙂

  30. MarkyWarky says:

    @Someone, no-one mentioned children being born religious anywhere in this thread! The child I have in my home has indeed been made so by years of systematic indoctrination, but that’s already happened and we have to deal with what we’re presented with.

    I’d love to know at what age people think a person CAN be said to be a Muslim? Is it on their 18th birthday when they become adult? Is it at puberty when they’d be expected to start obligatory prayer? Is at 10, the age of criminal responsibility so presumably when they’re able to make their own decisions? Or maybe it’s as soon as they are able to say they are one, unprompted and with conviction regardless of age?

    It all seems a bit arbitrary to me. I’d be more comfortable with the idea that NO-ONE is a true believer, because they’ve ALL been indoctrinated. Adult believers are even more child like than most kids are in my experience. At least kids have an excuse!!

  31. MarkyWarky says:

    At risk of completely taking over this thread – sorry – there’s a scene in the film The Ledge where the atheist main character prays with an employee to comfort her when she loses her daughter (I think). Good film or bad, that illustrates how kind atheists should act I believe; there are times when a person’s faith IS a comfort to them, and it’d be cruel to challenge it when they need it most. Our foster child needs his or hers right now.

    Put simply, there is a right time and a wrong time to challenge anything that someone holds dear, and atheists, with their pragmatic world view, aught to be better at recognising that than most.

  32. JimShatt says:

    @MarkWarky Is the foster child a pure carnivore too, because otherwise you can just not give him meat. I don’t believe the Koran obliges one to eat meat at all.

  33. Son of Glenner says:

    MarkyWarky’s last post reminded me of an incident in my own life. I was at a busy outdoor event when I met up with a couple of friends who believe in spiritualism. One of them also believed he had healing powers by the laying on of hands, although he was also showing early signs of dementia. At the time I was having problems which were later found to be due to a cancerous growth in my larynx. My ‘healer” friend offered to lay on hands for me. I humoured him by agreeing. He laid his hands on me for what seemed like a very long time and eventually stopped, promising to send me distant healing afterwards. We then went our separate ways. After we were well clear, another friend, who had been in my company throughout this, and is no more a believer in spirits and “healing” than I am, congratulated me on doing a very humanist thing by going along with the “healer”! After this, my condition continued to get slowly worse, until I was diagnosed with cancer. The cancer was duly excised, I was given radiotherapy, and I have now gone almost two years with periodic checkups and (so far!) no recurrence of the cancer. Meanwhile, my “healer” friend’s dementia has become much worse, which gives me no pleasure or satisfaction whatsoever.

    Unrelatedly, my friend who congratulated me is now giving devoted care to his wife who has cancer, a far worse cancer than I had on that occasion.

    As my friend said to me about a much more trivial situation, I congratulate MarkyWarky on doing a very humanist thing with his “muslim” foster child. I wonder how many muslim fosterers would show such tolerance to a “christian” or “atheist” child?

  34. MarkyWarky says:

    Thank you @Son of Glenner. Not many moral issues are as clear cut as some suggest, so all we can do is aim to do our best for others.

  35. M27Holts says:

    If tbe child is open to discussion. Explain to them that the abrahamic religions were all fabricated nonsense made up a long long time ago and have no place in determining whether you can eat meat which hasnt been ritually butchered or whether you have to pray all the time to a non existant sky fairy.. The child will end up a far balanced human being i,m sure…He is also missing out on bacon sarnies and beer when he is eighteen…life is too short to kowtow to organised religion..any sane person can grasp that fact…and the promise of eternal life is the biggest lie ever told by mankind…even more heinous than….I won’t come in your mouth…

  36. HelenaHandbasket says:

    I watched two family members convert to Islam and on each occasion I had th eopportunity to sit down and talk to them about the Qu’ran, why they believed what they did, what convinced them and so on (while other family members ran around in despair).I think the best cure for religion is actually reading the damn books, especilly alongisde someone who is critically sympathetic. They are full of such contradictory nonsense that bright kids start to smell a rat. thats where the priests/imams ect come in of course–as authority figures who tell folk that they needednt bother their heads with such things, that someone in authority understands the details. A bit of going “no, no-one understands this bit” said without rancour can go a very long way.

  37. MarkyWarky says:

    @M27Holts, if you’re that incapable of understanding that with these kids, you have to pick your battles and above all, NOT add to the trauma, please don’t ever consider fostering. Not that they’d allow you to do it.

    Your saving grace is that you said “If the child is open to discussion”. They’re not, not because they refuse to discuss, but because what they’ve been through and lost in a very very short space of time makes that kind of discussion cruel and heartless at this stage.

    Or maybe we should take the kid’s teddy away too? I mean, it’s not real as any sane person can grasp, and belief in its benign nature could put him or her in danger if they ever do come across a real bear, don’t you think? 🙂

  38. M27Holts says:

    Kids. Grow out of childish notions as they grow older. I have no problem with my grandson believing in all sorts of nonsense until he is old enough to question what grandad tells him…when he does I will then tell him the truth….Religion isnt like fairy tales…it claims it IS THE TRUTH….

  39. M27Holts says:

    And as I worked for 14 years as an IT programme manager for social services – I know far more about child services than you think I do…..

  40. MarkyWarky says:

    @M27Holts, you keep avoiding the central question – would you or would you not take away the one bit of consistency this child has in their life at the moment, which is his or her religious identity, regardless of how it came to be?

    If you would, how would you avoid adding to their trauma, and how would you gain their trust rapidly in order to deliver some therapeutic parenting that might, just might, give them the life chances they deserve?

    Let’s look at another example, again from The Ledge. You’re visiting a child in hospital, who’s about to die and who lost his Mum and Dad in the same car accident. With a pleading look on his face, he asks you whether he’ll see Mummy and Daddy in heaven. How do you answer?

    Oh and come on, working in IT for social services does not suggest the remotest knowledge of attachment theory, trauma, therapeutic parenting, P.A.C.E., identity issues, or any of the other subjects that go hand in hand with modern fostering, just as your replies here don’t. A large proportion of social workers are not up to speed yet, so their IT departments certainly aren’t!

    My brother works in IT for a bank, but couldn’t run an investment fund to save his life!

  41. WalterWalcarpit says:

    I too commend the essential humanism in MarkyWarky’s position.
    And his humanity, given how much Parson’s Green weighs on the minds of foster carers.
    One might hope that the youngster is in that family for long enough to grow also into a humanist, as I understand also M27Holts’ perspective that saving people from religion is a mission in and of itself.

    My contribution then is one of linguistic brevity: Many years ago when writing a studio manual determined not to waste with multiple tiresome repetitions of ‘he or she’, ‘him or her’ ‘his or hers’ I came up with the gender neutral ‘se’ ‘hem’ and ‘hes’ respectively.

    I have used them in this comments section over the years.

    You are all welcome …

  42. MarkyWarky says:

    Thanks @WalterWalcarpit.

    I like that idea, but have you never had anyone ask what the bloody hell it means?!!!

  43. two cents' worth says:

    MarkyWarky, your Muslim foster child is lucky to have you as their foster parent. Hats off to you, and best wishes to you and your family!

    M27Holts, children learn by example. Actions speak louder than words. While MarkyWarky’s foster child may be a Muslim now, it could well be that they become an atheist in the future, because they’ll know from their own experience that it is possible to be a kind, fair, and responsible person without believing in any gods.

  44. two cents' worth says:

    HaggisForBrains, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that Asda sells irony meters, or has stock in the companies that make them. Forget “planned obsolescence”–it would make business sense for Asda to take their own steps to overload irony meters in the hope of selling more of them 😉

  45. M27Holts says:

    Marky. You use the same old cliche…battered into your brain from birth and backed up by millions of years of evolution..The lie of a very improbable afterlife is really no solace to a dying child in pain and fearful of the unknown. It makes YOU feel better telling the lie…that is all…After all the suicide bomber is telling himself the same lies as he maims and kills the unbelievers….its dangerous to allow such stupid ideas to propagate beyond the age of seven…end of…

  46. Anonymous says:

    Kudos to Markymark for your inspiring humanity. And patience.

  47. MarkyWarky says:

    Thanks to everyone for your support and comments.

    @M27Holts, you’ve made it obvious, to me at least, that you are just as dogma driven as the religious, and almost as far away from reality. That is not pleasant to see, but is forgivable. Your lack of compassion for a damaged young child isn’t, and I dont think your inability to be pragmatic (“end of”? Seriously?), when pressumably you’d claim to base your life on reason, is either.

  48. Donn says:

    I’m with “two cents” – you’ll rarely if ever talk someone out of their faith in the fallacious, but you can be a good example. Many if not most religious upbringings leave a person with the idea that an atheist is bound to lack any moral compass and is apt to eat babies and torture cats for fun, and the faith is part of a structure that keeps the believer out of that moral vacuum.

    Reality as I perceive it is very different – the atheist may ironically be more likely to exhibit “Christian” virtues. It would be interesting in particular to get a breakdown, if there’s some way to test people for “abusive power and control” issues and other such disorders that lead to bad behavior. But again, we’ll rarely get anywhere selling atheism that way.

    The point is, the faithful themselves understand that it’s a lie. That’s what makes it so powerful: faith in something everyone understands to be preposterous, is an internal commitment that hooks you into the rest. They can never escape from the doubt, and any time they’re ready to let go of the faith, deep inside they know the truth as well as anyone else. Arguing with them is pointless, but when they’re ready to make the jump, it’s important that they know people who are out there living good lives without any such faith, who don’t eat babies or torture cats and in fact are kind, funny, happy people just as much as anyone else.

  49. M27Holts says:

    I do not lack compassion nor do I lack empathy. But I do understand that a lot of what people do for others is basically doing it for themselves….it is unfortunate that children are not nurtured by their parents in a regrettably large number of cases…but I will bet that the religious are far more likely to abuse than an atheist….And I once had the stats to back that up…

  50. MarkyWarky says:

    Hmm, I’m not so sure @M27Holts. You claim compassion, yet you refuse to concede that allowing a young child to hold onto ONE piece of familiarity, just one, is a good idea, when in the space of just a few weeks they’ve lost their home, their friends, their Dad (who is the child’s hero even though he’s the reason they’re in care), their Mum, their siblings who now live elsewhere, their school, their familiar home town surroundings, and even their toys and most of their clothes? And that in an environment where the religious influences can be assessed and monitored for moderation, and where the child can be exposed to alternative views for the first time ever. You think we should rip that final piece of their identity away from them immediately, not even slowly or by example? You have so little heart that you’d place your dogmatic desire to ban religion (which has never been shown to work anyway), ahead of the comfort of a young child?

    Yep, it does make me feel good to help this kid, which I agree is a fact resulting from evolution. But why do you think that the good feelings of the carer are mutually exclusive to the wellbeing of the recipient of the care? I do it because it’s good for the children AND because it makes me feel good.

    Actually, while I do get a good feeling from helping this kid, it would be far easier to ignore their need. I’ve had to seek out a Mosque that is a 32 mile round trip from home, give up evenings to take them there, learn about a religion I don’t buy into, find Halal meat (again a 32 mile round trip, and expensive), and identify a school that will meet his needs in an area that used to be a major seat of the National Front. I dare say I’m also about to experience racism vicariously, for the first time in my life as a person who’s benefitted from white male privilege so far

    In the case of the dying child in hospital, you couldn’t be more wrong. It would hurt me to repeat the lie of an afterlife, but I would do it to comfort a child who was desperately frightened and pleading for the comfort of knowing he’d see his Mum and Dad very soon. If you really can’t see how that lie could be a comfort to him, then I rest my case regarding your lack of compassion. I’ve seen the effects of this reassuring lie on the death bed with my own Mum, and it is massively real no matter what the person telling it believes or how it makes them feel.

    And as if any more proof of your dogmatism was needed; “beyond the age of seven…end of…”. Where in all of evolutionary creation do you get that arbitrary age from, with such religious certainty that you can claim it ends all debate?

  51. Moomin says:

    Well Asda do seem to have responded to the sound of irony meters exploding across the nation by removing all Billy Connolly items from sale. What else can you find offensive in their listings? I think we could severely limit their stock range of they’re going to remove from sale anything anyone finds offensive!

  52. M27Holts says:

    Moomin…Any TV programme from the sixties, seventies or eighties should have sufficient blasphemous, sexist, racist and homophobic material to make them unsellable to the snowflake people of 2019…

  53. HelenaHandbasket says:

    M27Holts “People who help others are basicallydoing it for themselves”. Are you telling us this to benefit others, or to benefit yourself?
    The trouble with all these supposedly rational reductive accounts of altruism is that they fail to distinguish ultimate and proximate causation, or in simpler terms the “why” and “how” of any trait.
    Its interesting to learn that we have evolved traits (like compassion) because they maximised inclusive fitness. But this no more makes the compassion fake than the fact that we evolved pain to protect ourselves would make pain fake.
    I think that, instead of asserting that one has empathy and compassion one might just act as though one has it.
    As MarkyWarky is clearly doing. If anyone is using someone else as a vehicle for their own needs M27, it’s you mate. (I would say “end of” at this point, but I’m not a cruel person)

  54. M27Holts says:

    HHB. Do you know me? No. So how do you know that I do not have empathy? Do you think I am a sociopath? Just asking……

  55. MarkyWarky says:

    M27Holts, I believe HHB has concluded that, as I have, from your posts in this thread, not one of which suggests otherwise. You’ve shown no empathy when given the opportunity, so it’s reasonable to conclude that you find it difficult.

  56. M27Holts says:

    Hmmm. Judge and Jury eh….i haven’t got a closed mind just because I am not trained as a councillor and Your assertion that religion is good for those about to die and that stark realism is in fact child cruelty in such a case as is absence of empathy…only the religious mind would make that leap of faith…no afterlife = child cruelty….and only a sociopath would tell a dying child the truth in such a position….ok. if you say so..

  57. M27Holts says:

    And marky warky you fail to explain tbat you get considerable monies for looking after children….so its a job…would you do it for free?

  58. MarkyWarky says:

    Oh that’s brilliant M27Holts, how long did it take you to think of that? “Judge and jury”, from the guy who finished a post with “end of”!!! Love it 🙂

    I’m not going to go over the basics of compassion again; I think everyone but you has got it by now, and must be getting pretty bored. Please though, stick with I.T. for all our sakes; I suspect you’re pretty good at that.

    So, do you think you’re the first to try raising “well paid foster carers” as a diversion? Do you have any idea how many stroppy teenagers have told me I don’t really care about them, I only do it for the money? You’re not the first to try it by a long way, and you’re not even the best.

    Maybe you’d care to explain to the ladies and gentlemen how pay is relevant? Is it because you’re jealous of the kind comments I’ve had and feel the need to dilute them? Feel free; anyone with any level of awareness knows that foster carers get very little compared to the hours and commitment they put in (about £1.45 an hour for the whole family, who are all involved), desperate even if we were paid loads, which might cure the desparate shortage, how would that change any of the arguments above?

    Yes it’s a job, one you don’t get to go home from, or take holidays from. Yes I’d do it for free if I could afford to; I’ve already told you I get a good feeling from it, and these kids need someone on their side.

    Try again…….

  59. Laripu says:

    Here’s a diversion, off-topic, but interesting:

    https://www.theguardian.com/books/2019/jun/29/a-history-of-the-bible-by-john-barton-review

    MarkyWarky, you’re doing good for the child. He has a long life in which to discard religion. He now also has kind and caring models of what atheists are. He will eventually learn about religious excesses like terrorism. He will compare and contrast. I expect that by age 13 or 14 he will make a more reasoned choice.

  60. two cents' worth says:

    Laripu, thanks for the link! It’s an interesting article, and even made me laugh a couple of times. First, the orthodox corruption of scripture tickled me. Then I misread loose canon of holy books as loose cannon of holy books. Anyway, I admire John Barton’s scholarship.

  61. Donn says:

    It’s sure an indulgent view. Oh yes, the documents that form the basis of Christianity are a hodge-podge of fabrications, contradictory reminiscences and assertions that don’t add up, but it’s all good! It’s a … celebration of variety, yeah, that’s the ticket.

  62. Son of Glenner says:

    Donn: “… the documents that form the basis of Christianity are a hodge-podge …”

    Well said! So what else is new?

  63. HelenaHandbasket says:

    M27 Holts. Dont dish it out if you can’t take it, is sound advice. Before you tell everyone else that their compassion and empathy are fake, maybe consider the implications? Just a thought.

  64. M27Holts says:

    Me! I’m big enough and ugly enough. And quite possibly a psychopath…but I am a non practicing psychopath…

  65. jb says:

    MarkyWarky — How old is your Muslim foster child? I’d be very interested in hearing what he knows of your beliefs, and what he thinks about them and his position as a foster child in a non-Muslim household. (I was raised Catholic, and I definitely had opinions regarding religion from a very young age. Originally the opinions I was brought up with, then more and more opinions of my own, but always opinions).

    I do think you are correct in not trying to impose your own beliefs on the child. And I respect the work you are doing. It is not a job I would take!

  66. M27Holts says:

    Is it me or is religion beginning to turn the tide and begin to take us back into the dark ages……After all…science is dogma too according to some people…we’re DOOMED!

  67. Son of Glenner says:

    jb: You should not be asking MarkyWarky for that information, which is probably confidential. MarkyWarky has taken great care in his posts not to reveal either the age or gender of the child, and has only obliquely hinted at the reasons why the child has been fostered in the first place.

    If, like me, you respect the work MarkyWarky is doing, don’t ask those questions.

  68. MatkyWarky says:

    @jb, SoG is right, but rest assured there is plenty of oportunity for the child to gain a much broader perspective, not just of religion, but also of all kinds of life choices and behaviours they’ve not seen alternatives to so far.

  69. silentralph says:

    Great markywarky, you’re a saint. Doing allah’s work you are. Not trying to be glib but I keep expecting to read that the unfortunate child’s (and I feel for the child, I do. There are millions in similar situations) dire situation has “nothing to do with Islam”.

    You said “within reason”… where is the line? Who decides?

    Of course I am speaking in generalities here which is what we should be doing to keep this specific child out of it. Using any specific child’s situation as an unbeatable ace in the whole would be a very religious tactic and I’m sure not the intent.

    Given the state of the world today, the lack of specifics, rightly, and a bit of math one would have to consider at least that a child’s similar circumstance was in some way the result of some sort of explosion? In that case it seems to me that honesty would be the best for a child long term.

    I wonder what it would be like were the situation reversed? An atheist child being fostered in a Muslim household or theocracy?

  70. Uncle Roger says:

    I’m late to the party, but I’d like to commend MarkyWarky on doing what’s best for the child, regardless of his views on it.

    for M27Holts and anyone else who thinks MarkyWarky ought to talk the kid out of their beliefs, let me ask you this: Suppose you heard of a Jehovah’s Witness couple who were fostering an atheist kid. Suppose they started to try and convince that kid that they should be a JW? What if the kid was Christian and a Muslim family took them in, doing the same thing?

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