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The Editorial

God plus one...

‘Truly marvellous!’ ‘I stopped where I was and thanked God.’ ‘We could hardly believe it!’ These were the kind of reactions described by many Christians as they heard the news of the Government’s defeat in the Commons over the Religious Hatred Bill at the very end of January.

John Benton

There still is a Religious Hatred Bill, but much curtailed in its scope, as the Government was forced to accept changes it did not want. The recent conviction of the radical Islamic cleric Abu Hamza shows that there were laws in place already able to deal with real incitement to religious hatred... but with those historic words, ‘The ayes to the right 282 the noes to the left 283’, surely God himself is saying something to us. The old adage, ‘God plus one is a majority’, is still true (even if in a sense, with the Prime Minister being absent from the crucial vote, the ‘one’ is ironically Tony Blair himself).