Cherie Blair thinks god is nice to women

So Cherie Blair is giving a lecture in Rome on Friday titled ‘Religion as a force in protecting women’s human rights’. So…..what’s she going to say then? What can she say? It would be interesting to know.

One wonders if she’s going to just…make stuff up. People do that you know. I’ve noticed it. They like women’s rights, and they like religion, so they want to say the one helps or supports or fosters or protects the other – but there is very little evidence of that, and quite a lot of evidence of its opposite. So what are they to do? Well…just say things, that’s what. Religion allows that, and most other institutions and bystanders allow it too. It’s even expected. Religion is a good thing (the idea seems to be); other good things are good things; religion should be associated with these other good things; therefore when saying things about religion it’s commendable to use a certain kind of verb (helps, supports, etc) between the word ‘religion’ and the good things. No need to look for evidence or consider the plausibility of the use of such verbs; just do the necessary. So Karen Armstrong informs us that ‘at the core of every single one of the world religions is the virtue of compassion’ – which just isn’t true. The seven deadly sins don’t even mention cruelty, which is just as well given how vindictive the OT god is, and Jesus is not much better. It’s the modern piety that religion is all about compassion – that compassion is ‘at the core of’ all religions, whatever ‘at the core’ of means – but compassion has not always been the important virtue that it is now; Armstrong is just blatantly reading her own modern morality back into the old religions. It seems unlikely that Cherie Blair will be attempting anything else.

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