I was recently berated by a friend for untagging unflattering pictures on Facebook. I fail to understand why you would not impose some sort of quality control on your online photo albums and she fails to understand why I cannot “get with it”. I have other friends who tell me I should use Facebook more often. This is one of those situations where none of us is right or wrong, it just means that although our timelines and walls are generic, the personalities behind the contents are very different.
Of course this should be obvious. If you are not a person who indulges much in small talk and is quite introvert in company, it is likely that you will not feel comfortable broadcasting every small moment or event online. People who are outgoing and sociable, are perhaps likely to be more cheery and open online.
It is not that I have a problem with social media, after all I appear to be blogging and I also have accounts on Twitter and Pinterest, but the way I choose to use these sites may be different to the next person. I enjoy being able to keep in touch with far flung friends and seeing pictures of old friends’ children in their new school uniforms, but I am just not inspired to share the minutiae of my everyday life.
If I feel I have something interesting to say, it is more likely to be here, or at my kitchen table over a cheeky red wine and a pungent lump of cheese. I may even find unflattering photos funny within the circle of my close friends when they’re not displayed publically for all my work colleagues, acquaintances and friends of friends. Maybe I am not ‘with it’ and maybe I lack a sense of humour, but I am never going to be comfortable with producing an ongoing broadcast of my life, either on, or offline.
Archbishop of Canterbury, BA, Christianity, Civil Ceremonies, crucifix, Delia Smith, Discrimination, European Court of Human Rights, Eweida v British Airways plc, Gay Couples, Jesus, NHS, Richard Dawkins, Secularism, Secularists
There is nothing like a good spat between Christians and secularists. The pious and the militants locking horns over the thorny issue of who is right without hope of compromise. You know it will only be a matter of time before Richard Dawkins sweeps in with his wispy grey locks flying around in the face of religious doctrine, while the Archbishop of Canterbury sways around speaking in a voice which conveys wisdom while adding nothing of consequence. If you are really unlucky Delia Smith will add her opinion to the party, but without bringing homemade cakes.
Today sees the return of the story of four British Christians who are due to take their cases for unfair dismissal to the European Court of Human Rights. Two ex-employees of BA and the NHS claim discrimination for wearing crucifixes at work and two others for refusing to provide sexual therapy and civil ceremonies for gay couples.
Surely you cannot complain of being discriminated against, while affectively discriminating against gay people and being unable to perform your job and offer the services expected of you in a non-religious work role. Christians cannot be exempt from treating gay people equally; neither can their beliefs be a trump card over all other beliefs and life styles. In the same vein, although less offensive, Christians cannot wear jewellery in a workplace where it is not acceptable for their colleagues to do the same. This is not discrimination, but a request from their employers to treat everyone equally and abide by the same rules and codes of practice as their colleagues.
If the rulings in these cases are over-turned by the European Court of Human Rights, the implications are far worse than asking someone to remove, or cover a piece of jewellery. The message will be that it is fair to expect special treatment if you are a Christian and worse that it is acceptable to be prejudiced against others.
What would Jesus say?