Thursday 22 May 2008

A letter to Mrs. Dorries

I decided to send an email to Nadine Dorries, as I have time to waste this morning and she says she reads every email she receives. Since she claims that she received so much support recently, I thought the email below would put a bit of variety in her life:

Dear Mrs Dorries,
I hesitated a lot before writing you this email, as since the airing of Dispatches: In God's Name you probably received your share of (well deserved) criticism for hanging around the crowd of Christian Fundamentalists, for being so close to them actually that you even got your policy on abortion dictated by them. That said, since you say in your "blog" (which by the way, if it was a real blog, should allow comments on it) that you read and answer personally all the emails you receive, I will take a chance and tel you directly what I think of what you are doing, which is, in effect, surrendering the authority you have as a member of Parliament to a bunch of loudmouth fanatics, which do not represent the people of this country. Mrs Dorries, watching the aforementioned documentary, I got very angry. Not because hardcore Christians were trying to force their view on the abortion issue. That was sad, but to be expected from them. And to be honest, I don't care much about the abortion debate. I think women should have the right to choose, but as any choice, it is a terrible burden. What got me angry was how easy it was for these hardcore Christians to get into Westminster and talk to you. What got me angry was not even to see that Andrea Williams was on such good terms with you that your relationship with her could be called a friendship. It was that she was dicatiting your views on abortion, and that when you spoke in the Parliament on abortion, you were in fact parroting her. You might tell me I'm wrong. Maybe it's just that you share the same faith as her (including her contempt for muslims? including her views on Creationism?), and you were just basing your policies to be dictated on your faith, which happen to be the same as one of your friends. In effect, the result was the same: you let your faith, your particular view of Christian faith, which is not shared by the majority of the people of this country, which is unverifiable in itself (as it is faith), dictate your behavior as an elected body. Then, on your "blog", you sheepishly defended yourself, using the faith argument again, saying that you were persecuted, unjustly accused of being a fundamentalist because you believe in God, because you pray, and since almost everybody you know (as if it is a proof of anything) believe in something, there is nothing wrong with that. You also said that your opposition to abortion came from your experience as a nurse. Is it because you are a nurse that Mrs. Williams gets your attention so much? Doesn't she collaborate so closely with you (or you with her) because of your profession? Of course not. It is because your position on abortion is in accordance with your (and her) faith. What we saw in Dispatches was an assault on abortion triggered by a radical Christian faith. The nurse argument is a cheap excuse. And trying to banalise the crowd you hang out with, trying to dismiss the repressive nature of their faith (which you seem to share) was nothing less than cowardly. You see, here lies the problem, here is the reason of my anger: Mrs. Williams has not been elected MP for Mid Bedfordshire. God has not been elected MP for Mid Bedfordshire. You have, Mrs. Dorries. The policies you defend will not influence Heaven (if it exists), it will not influence God (if he exists), it will influence this country. It will touch real people. What you believe in is unverifiable, the morals that your faith dictates is unverifiable. You cannot base your policies on your faith, Mrs. Dorries. You believe in God? Fine. Leave it at the door of the Parliament. Because as faith, any faith, is unverifiable, as faith cannot be proven, it is your duty as an elected member of the Parliament to keep your faith away from your judgment. You didn't do this. And when you got criticised for it, for hanging out with a bunch of fundamentalists (because that's what they are, Mrs Dorries), you hid in God's skirt, using your faith as a defence. A lot of people believe in something, Mrs Dorries, but have very different views of what this belief implies. In any case, you also have to defend also the freedom and well-being of those who do not believe, or believe differently than you. And trust me, there are many who believe differently than you, or than Mrs. Williams. They might not be among the people you know, but then you have yourself to blame for that. If you were attacked recently, it was because you were tacitly giving a political legitimacy to an unelected lobby. Because of the religious nature of this lobby, you were letting a particular faith dictate policies. That was irresponsible. You can defend your views, but you should do it with courage and intellectual honesty. In the recent controversy regarding your Christian friends, you show neither. Sincerely,

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